Buffalo Trace Distillery released Eagle Rare 25, an ultra-aged bourbon that exemplifies the Distillery's relentless commitment to innovation and honoring tradition but embracing change. At 25 years old, Eagle Rare 25 marks the oldest expression released from the Eagle Rare portfolio.
Buffalo Trace Distillery has conducted thousands of experiments over the years to test a variety of factors impacting the aging and maturation of whiskey, including barrel char levels, temperature, airflow, light, barrel placement, and more. Eagle Rare 25 is the first release from Warehouse P, one of Buffalo Trace Distillery's two experimental warehouses. A purpose-built, state-of-the-art warehouse, Warehouse P was constructed to test if it was possible to extend favorably both the aging and maturation processes typical for American whiskey and bourbon.
"Eagle Rare 25 defies the conventional limits of typical bourbon aging," remarked Buffalo Trace Distillery Master Distiller Harlen Wheatley. "When crafting whiskey in conditions like those we experience in Kentucky, two reactions happen over time: more liquid is lost due to evaporation – also known as angel's share - and extraction of flavors from the barrel becomes more intense, often leading older whiskeys to taste over-oaked, astringent, and dry. The unique set of aging conditions in Warehouse P has allowed us to create a 25-year-old bourbon that smooths out the extractions and highlights the desirable flavors found in ultra-aged American whiskey products."
While time in the barrel contributes to creating an ultra-aged bourbon, it is the marriage of age and maturity, or how factors including oak type, barrel char, temperature, humidity, and barrel placement alter the whiskey over time, that creates a truly outstanding taste experience.
"We closely monitored Eagle Rare 25 throughout the aging process and discovered that the impact over time due to controlled, extended aging was optimally mature whiskey – by that, I mean whiskey that is uniquely smooth and complex with deep, mature flavors around every corner," Wheatley added. "Eagle Rare 25 is unlike any other extra-aged bourbon on the market today. We are quite proud of this bourbon."
Eagle Rare 25 boasts notes of intense cherry, oak, dark chocolate, and an icing drizzle beginning on the nose; the palate is a balance of vanilla, dark fruit, and butterscotch, followed by an extremely long finish with lingering notes of rickhouse floor, baking spice, and black pepper.
Eagle Rare 25 was bottled upon reaching its silver anniversary in the barrel, symbolized by the custom sterling silver wing hand-hammered to encase each hand-blown crystal decanter perfectly. Opening the custom display box reveals an eagle's outstretched wings framing the 101-proof bourbon, which also contains an elegant glass eagle inside the bottle. This dramatic presentation is befitting the exceptional nature of this rare, first-of-its-kind bottling.
"Around the globe, an eagle's wings symbolize freedom and the opportunity to reach higher. It's also a reminder for us at Buffalo Trace Distillery to never settle in our pursuit of crafting the perfect bourbon," noted Andrew Duncan, global brand director. "In service of that relentless pursuit, Eagle Rare 25 is the pinnacle of American whiskey to date from our Distillery, and our Eagle Rare brand is the perfect portfolio to showcase this barrier-breaking expression."
Approximately 200 750ml bottles of Eagle Rare 25 will be released to select retailers, bars, and restaurants globally beginning November 2023 at a suggested retail price of $10,000 per bottle. The expression joins the Eagle Rare lineup of Eagle Rare, Double Eagle Very Rare, and Eagle Rare 17-Year-Old, released each fall as part of the Buffalo Trace Antique Collection.