Thursday, March 7, 2013

New Barrel Proof Elijah Craig 12-Year-Old

Heaven Hill announced yesterday a special bottling of Elijah Craig 12-Year-Old Barrel Proof Small Batch Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey. This limited edition bourbon will be allocated to all markets that currently offer Elijah Craig.

According to the company, this release takes advantage of both the surging popularity of high end bourbon and American whiskey, and the trend toward high proof or barrel strength bottlings. It also leverages the critical acclaim for Elijah Craig Bourbon and the high regard with which critics and aficionados hold the brand.

The new Elijah Craig Barrel Proof Small Batch release will begin shipping next week. Quantities are limited. The suggested retail price is $39.99. Proof of the initial release will be 134.2° ( 67.1% alcohol/volume). The 12-year-old age statement has moved to the back label to make room for 'Barrel Proof' on the front.

In addition, the release will forgo traditional chill-filtering, meaning all the natural esters and taste components from the barrel are preserved, giving the bourbon a particularly rich flavor and mouthfeel.

The new release will be offered in the traditional, distinctive Elijah Craig flask-style 750ml bottle, with the familiar oversize cork stopper and Elijah Craig signature blown into the front of the glass.  It will carry a dark brown version of the cartouche-style Elijah Craig label, with 'Barrel Proof' highlighted in red and hand written proof/alcohol by volume information, which will vary from one dump to the next.

“With the current unprecedented popularity of American whiskeys in general, and high end bourbon releases in particular, we feel that this release of Elijah Craig Barrel Proof is poised for great critical acclaim and sales success,” noted Heaven Hill Senior Brand Manager Susan Wahl. “It hits all the right sweet spots for today’s ultra-premium Bourbon consumer—barrel proof, 12 years of aging in open rick warehouses, non-chill filtered, and very small dumps of barrels. This barrel proof bottling, and the recent 20 year old Single Barrel bottling, have taken the Elijah Craig range to unprecedented levels of demand and stature.”

12 comments:

Anonymous said...

Richnimrod said;
OOOOOOOOOHHH! THis sounds so tasty! I hope I can get my hands on it here in regressive, liquor control hell: Michigan. Wish me luck...

BMc said...

12 years old and cask strength for $40?!?! Helllooooo Heaven Hill!

That's an extremely high proof for a 12 year. Not unprecedented, but wow. Do you know what proof they barrel at?

Lazer said...

Yes!!!!!

Chuck Cowdery said...

HH barrels at the maximum 125 proof and tends to draw special editions like this from the highest floors in the warehouses, hence the high barrel proof at dumping.

Mark Fleetwood said...

What's "open rick warehouses"?

Chuck Cowdery said...

I'm not exactly sure what they mean, since that wording suggests there are closed rick warehouses, and I don't know what those would be. I do know that all of the warehouses HH uses for bourbon are wooden ricks, a steel shell, and no artificial heating or air circulation.

sku said...

It's good to see a brand going against the younger, weaker trend that it seems we've been seeing. In fact, between this and the 20 yo, Elijah Craig is going older and stronger. Good for them!

Anonymous said...

Gary says:
Can't wait to try this at the Sampler in April! Sounds like an awesome value!

Ethan Smith said...

Well this has really turned into a good-news, bad-news day. This is good news to see this offering. I had the privilege to help a liquor retailer select a single barrel EC12 about 2 years ago. The samples were barrel proof and unfiltered. If this release is anything like those samples, we're in for a treat!
As for the bad news, I don't want to derail this, but it sort of blends with this story. Chuck, you mention that there is a trend towards higher proofs in this article. I guess Beam just does not get the message. Apparently they silently made the Old Grand Dad 86 drop to 80 proof. I know it's not as big a deal as the Maker's Mark debacle, but nonetheless, why is this honestly necessary? Why is Beam running against the grain of the higher proofs?

Chuck Cowdery said...

Beam perceives OGD as a mature brand that isn't attracting new drinkers, so they're mostly concerned with keeping old drinkers. They calculate that they'll lose more with a price increase than they will with a proof cut.

Mark Fleetwood said...

"Open" rick warehouse is, as per Larry Kass what you described Chuck: rick structure clad on outside with non-load bearing or integrally constructed outer walls. As opposed to a regular warehouse built with separate floors.
All this over "open." Was it Mark Twain who snipped something like "If you see an adjective, kill it."? (More important, did I punctuate that sentence correctly?)

Chasitey H said...

Had the pleasure of trying this bourbon last weekend at Heaven Hills tour and am happy to report it is great. My husband bought a bottle at their Bourbon Heritage Center for $75.00. It was more than it is reported to cost when in spirit shops, but worth it until we can buy it locally.