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Whiskey Meets Tequila: Sagamore Spirit Releases Tequila Finish Rye

Sagamore Spirit Straight Rye Whiskey in Extra Añejo barrelsBALTIMORE, Maryland — Struggling with that age-old question, “whiskey or tequila”? Sagamore Spirit says why not both? With the calendar counting down to Cinco de Mayo, the award-winning distiller today announced the release of its newest limited-edition rye whiskey that brings the best of both worlds: Sagamore Spirit Distiller’s Select Tequila Finish.

The new offering, available nationwide, finishes Sagamore Spirit Straight Rye Whiskey in Extra Añejo barrels. The result is a full-bodied yet approachable rye that telegraphs tequila in all the right ways, with hints of agave, citrus, spice, warm oak and vanilla on the nose, and even more agave, peppercorn, fig and orange to taste. Marked at a substantial 98-proof, it is a spirit meant to be sipped and savored.

“Melding a full-bodied rye whiskey with tequila may sound like a risky move, but our distilling team welcomes risks that can bring big rewards,” said Brian Treacy, Sagamore Spirit’s president. “Like Maryland-style rye, tequila has a history that’s deeply rooted in a sense of place, so to us, this union made perfect sense. The end result perfectly captures what’s special about each spirit to give fans of both spirits something unexpected, seasonal and full of flavor – just in time for warmer weather.”

Despite tequila’s more than 350-year history, Extra Añejo is a newer sub-category that requires tequila to be aged for at least three years in oak barrels. Akin to rye whiskey’s aging process, Extra Añejo tequila interacts with the barrel staves longer, resulting in some of the most complex and elegant tequilas in the world. When it came time to select barrels for Tequila Finish, Sagamore Spirit’s team of distillers sought out casks that had nurtured tequila in such a way and had aged both Añejo and Extra Añejo tequila for at least seven years.

Tequila Finish is part of the Sagamore Spirit Reserve Series, a collection of limited-edition Maryland-style rye whiskies aged in barrels that formerly aged other spirits, wines, or beers. Past releases include Manhattan Finish, Rye Ale Finish (aged in Sierra Nevada beer barrels) and Calvados Finish.

While Tequila Finish will only be available for a limited time, fans can enjoy Sagamore Spirit year-round with its Signature, Double Oak, and Cask Strength rye whiskies, the distillery’s core offerings that are leading the Maryland-style rye revival across the country.

Sagamore Spirit Distiller’s Select Tequila Finish will be available nationwide beginning March in 750ml bottles at a suggested retail price of $69. To find a bottle near you visit sagamorespirit.com/find-rye.

About Sagamore Spirit
Sagamore Spirit is committed to inspiring a global passion for Maryland Rye Whiskey. Its award-winning five-acre waterfront distillery in Baltimore is reclaiming the city’s rightful place in America’s whiskey history, where storied distillers perfected rye whiskey for more than 150 years before Kentucky was founded.

Maryland Rye Whiskey was known to be full bodied yet notably more approachable than other regional rye styles, and Sagamore Spirit has picked up the torch. Its straight rye whiskies have earned more than 100 awards internationally, including “World’s Best Rye Whiskey” in 2019 at the San Francisco World Spirits Competition. Sagamore Spirit’s distillation team blends two different rye mash bills – a high rye and a low rye – and then adds pure Maryland limestone-filtered spring water, transported 22 miles from Sagamore Farm, to craft the brand’s Signature 83-proof Maryland-Style Rye Whiskey. To learn more about Sagamore Spirit’s signature expressions, including Cask Strength and Double Oak, as well as limited-time releases, visit www.SagamoreSpirit.com.

International Whiskey Day – March 27th

International Whiskey Day - March 27thInternational Whisk(e)y Day was first announced in 2008 and falls on March 27th each year. The name is used with the parenthesis to indicate support of Scottish, Canadian, and Japanese whiskies (no e) as well as Irish and American whiskeys (with an e). The day publicly supports Parkinson’s disease research in addition to enjoying Whiskey.

International Whiskey Day was launched in 2009 at the Whiskey Day Festival in the northern Netherlands in the presence of several whiskey writers. The event was created in honor of British Whiskey and Beer writer Michael Jackson and is celebrated on Jackson’s birthday.

Participants are encouraged to raise one up on the day and drink whiskey for the love of the drink as well as to celebrate Michael’s life. Others participate via social media using the #whiskyday hashtag. Various bars may have specials on March 27th to celebrate the day.

Taken from the International Whisk(e)y day’s website, “International Whisk(e)y Day is a non-profit celebration of whiskey which receives no funding and is run entirely by the passion of whiskey fans from around the world. So if you love whisk(e)y and want to help spread the word, then go ahead and tell someone about it.”

Winners of the U.S. Open Whiskey & Spirits Championship

Old Forester Celebrates 150-Year-History with Limited-Edition Bourbon Release

LOUISVILLE, Kentucky – In 1870, George Garvin Brown changed the spirits industry forever when he sealed and sold his whisky – Old Forester – exclusively in a glass bottle. Each bottle was adorned with his signature, a personal guarantee of the brand’s quality and consistency. Today, 150 years later, Old Forester announces the upcoming release of Old Forester 150th Anniversary Bourbon to commemorate his act of ingenuity, honor his legacy and celebrate the history of the First Bottled Bourbon.

Old Forester 150th Anniversary Bourbon references George’s original process, composed of three batches, unfiltered* and each presented at individual batch strength. The limited release is presented in an amber glass bottle, reminiscent of the hand-blown glass of George’s day, and will come in a commemorative canister. It’s planned for release in October 2020.

“This special bourbon has been in the works for some time now, and while it is exciting for our family and colleagues, I hope the larger Old Forester family – the bourbon lovers and fans – will appreciate it just as much,” said Campbell Brown, Old Forester President and Fifth-Generation Brown Family Member. “My great-great grandfather had quite the vision for his whisky. He was bringing something to the market that had previously not existed and today, we instill his legacy of ingenuity in everything we do – especially in the halls at Old Forester Distilling Co., in the same building George ran the business in the early days of the company.”

In the 150 years since George’s started the company, the brand has endured 13 years of Prohibition, World Wars, changing consumer palates and industry consolidations. Today, Old Forester remains the only brand with an uninterrupted 150-year history, sold by the same family company before, during and after Prohibition.

George’s act of selling whisky exclusively in a sealed bottle was innovative at a time when most whisky was sold by the barrel and subject to adulteration prior to reaching the consumer. Predating any modern food safety acts, he helped lead an industry on the path to rigorous self-regulation that is still upheld today. In addition to being the first to exclusively sell whisky in sealed glass bottles, George was the first to commercially batch whisky to ensure a consistent flavor profile. At the time, he batched from three distilleries – Mellwood, Mattingly and Atherton – before eventually acquiring the Mattingly Distillery and distilling his own whisky.

For the Old Forester 150th Anniversary Bourbon, 150 barrels were chosen by Master Distiller Chris Morris and set aside for this limited-release product. At maturity, several barrels lost their full contents to the Angel’s Share. The resulting aged liquid was personally and individually tasted by Master Taster Jackie Zykan and separated by-hand into three distinct batches, differing in proof and flavor profile.

“We designed the expression to share our unique story,” said Jackie Zykan, Old Forester Master Taster. “George Garvin Brown was an entrepreneur and an innovator. I have composed three unique blends to honor his process of batching from the three original distilleries. Each captures a distinct facet of the beloved Old Forester flavor profile, each upholding his highest standards of quality.”

Old Forester 150th Anniversary Bourbon Batch Details and Notes from the Master Taster:

Batch 01/03 – 125.6 proof/62.8% ABV, comprised of 46 barrels; fruit bomb
Nose: maple syrup and perfectly ripe orchard fruits, apricot and plum
Mid: açaí and black current
Finish: graham cracker, subtle peppermint, long well-rounded spice, moderately dry
Batch 02/03 – 126.4 proof/63.2% ABV, comprised of 48 barrels; sweet and spry
Nose: cherry cordial and raspberry preserves
Mid: French toast and chocolate malt
Finish: brilliant and perky spice at the front of the palate, touch of cedar, mildly dry
Batch 03/03 – 126.8 proof/63.4% ABV, comprised of 53 barrels; green and spice
Nose: dill and bright orange peel, hint of light brown sugar
Mid: sweetens in the middle to melon and pine
Finish: medium dry, tingling green peppercorns, rosemary, grapefruit peel, and lingering anise

A limited number of cases will be available nationally in October 2020 for a suggested retail price of $150. To learn where you can purchase Old Forester 150th Anniversary Bourbon, check out OldForester.com for a retailer near you.

About Brown-Forman:
For 150 years, Brown-Forman Corporation has enriched the experience of life by responsibly building fine quality beverage alcohol brands, including Jack Daniel’s Tennessee Whiskey, Jack Daniel’s & Cola, Jack Daniel’s Tennessee Honey, Jack Daniel’s Tennessee Fire, Gentleman Jack, Jack Daniel’s Single Barrel, Finlandia, Korbel, el Jimador, Woodford Reserve, Old Forester, Canadian Mist, Herradura, New Mix, Sonoma-Cutrer, Early Times, Chambord, BenRiach, GlenDronach and Slane. Brown-Forman’s brands are supported by over 4,800 employees and sold in more than 170 countries worldwide. For more information about the company, please visit brown-forman.com.

About Old Forester Bourbon:
Old Forester is Brown-Forman’s founding brand, founded in 1870 by George Garvin Brown. Brown believed Old Forester was so pure and consistent that he sealed it, signed it, and pledged, “There is nothing better in the market.”

Please sip responsibly.
Old Forester 150th Anniversary Bourbon, 62.8%, 63.2% and 63.4% Alc. by Vol., Old Forester Distilling Company at Louisville in Kentucky. OLD FORESTER is a registered trademark. ©2020 Brown-Forman. All rights reserved. Please do not share or forward this content with anyone under the legal drinking age.

*All natural barrel char sediment has been removed via dump room screening. In extremes of temperature this bourbon may naturally haze or cloud. This is normal for an unfiltered bourbon whisky.