King of Kentucky, a super-premium straight bourbon, is returning this year with the release of its sixth edition. Hitting shelves now, the limited-edition expression will mark the sixth anniversary for the brand.
The 2023 expression is a 16-year-old Kentucky Straight Bourbon, featuring a premium embossed label with a stamp border and details. Approximately 3,800 bottles will be produced with a suggested retail of $299.99. While the majority of this year’s volume will remain in Kentucky, the expression will also be available in limited quantities in Alabama, California, Florida, Illinois, Nevada, North Carolina, Metro New York, Ohio, and Tennessee.
King of Kentucky was established in 1881 as a Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey. Brown-Forman acquired the brand in 1936 from Selected Kentucky Distillers and, by 1940, converted it to a blended whiskey until it was discontinued in 1968. In 2018, Brown-Forman revived the label paying homage to the brand’s past.
“We are excited to celebrate the sixth year of the King of Kentucky brand with an extremely robust selection of 16-year-old barrels,” said Brown-Forman Master Distiller Chris Morris in a prepared statement. “This brand demonstrates Brown-Forman’s commitment to and expertise in the growing American Whiskey category.”
King of Kentucky is an annual release of a single barrel inventory featuring a barrel-strength, minimally-filtered proof presentation, with each release and every barrel said to be unique. For this year’s iteration, Morris chose a single lot of barrels to set aside for the limited-release product from 2007.
“This year’s release of 51 barrels came from one production date, July 19, 2007. All the barrels were aged in Warehouse G at the Brown-Forman Distillery,” said Morris. “This showcases what a difference each individual barrel has at this extreme age on the color, flavor, and aroma of this wonderful whiskey.”
Every bottle comes enclosed in a decorative canister, and tells the story of its origin through the details on the front and back of its package. All are filled, bottled, wax-dipped, and numbered by hand with details including proof, age, warehouse location, lot number, serial number, and barrel number.
Official tasting notes for “Representative Barrel” are as follows.
- Proof: 125.8
- Age: 16 years
- Aroma: Dark graham cracker, vanilla and charred oak notes sweetened with hints of port, cognac and milk chocolate coated coconut.
- Flavor: Dark chocolate mocha with traces of black tea and leathery tannins.