For the first time ever, an American distillery has taken home the highest honor in whisky.
Michter's, a Louisville-based bourbon and rye producer, eclipsed the biggest names from Scotland, Japan, Ireland, and beyond to rank first overall in the newly-released 2023 World's Most Admired Whiskies top 50 list published by Drinks International. With this stunning recognition, Michter's joins a winner's circle of iconic brands including Yamazaki and Springbank.
"I could not be prouder of what this means not only for Michter's, but for the American whiskey community as a whole," said Andrea Wilson, Michter's Master of Maturation, former Chair of the Kentucky Distillers' Association and Kentucky Bourbon Hall of Fame member. "It is the ultimate recognition of the attention to detail, discipline, rigor and focus on excellence that has characterized high-end American whiskey production for many years now.
"At home, we've always had tremendous belief in our approach, but then you would travel abroad and see bourbon placed on the bottom shelf almost automatically in many parts of the world so it is really exciting to see it reach such high regard. This means so much to our team and we couldn't be more humbled to celebrate this moment in American whiskey with our friends throughout the industry," Wilson continued.
For Michter's President and fellow Kentucky Bourbon Hall of Fame member Joseph J. Magliocco, Michter's being named the World's Most Admired Whiskey caps a remarkable run that began in the 1990s with him and his two brothers acquiring for $245 the Michter's trademark, which had been abandoned, thereby obtaining the rights to the brand he had once sold as a summer job during the late 1970s.
"This is a great day for American whiskey and a great day for Michter's," remarked Magliocco. "We are so grateful to the Academy and to all the people who have done so much over the years to make this possible. I can't put into words how thrilled and how honored all of us at Michter's are. From my first days of learning about the heritage of Michter's in Pennsylvania through the subsequent time our team has spent resurrecting the brand in Kentucky, we have always hoped that people would appreciate the brand's legacy and dedication to quality. But if you told me that one day Michter's would be named the World's Most Admired Whiskey, well, I would've thought you'd had one too many."
Beyond its main distillery in the Shively section of Louisville, Michter's operations extend to two other sites in Kentucky. In Springfield, Michter's is farming estate grown grain on its 205-acre property, while in downtown Louisville, Michter's has its second distillery in the historic Fort Nelson Building. Situated in a prime location on West Main Street opposite Louisville Slugger and on the same block as the Frazier Museum, Michter's Fort Nelson Distillery features the legendary pot still system from Michter's Pennsylvania. It also has educational tours with whiskey tastings and The Bar at Fort Nelson, which features classic cocktails curated by spirits and cocktail historian David Wondrich.