New Old Rip Van Winkle 25 Year Old Bourbon Enters The Fray

By Nino Kilgore-Marchetti / February 21, 2017

There’s a new Van Winkle bourbon coming to market that’s the oldest ever to be released. It will be super limited edition and, as for the cost, well…

Let this sink in for a moment – there’s a new Van Winkle bourbon about to hit store shelves. It is, of course, a super rare enough of a bourbon to get a hold of under its normal, limited bottle releases each year. The new Old Rip Van Winkle 25 Year Old Bourbon steps this up even more, and even more yet again, with only 710 bottles being made available.

Old Rip Van Winkle 25 Year Old Bourbon

Here’s the story on the bourbon and the special packaging it will drop in, directly from Buffalo Trace:

The barrels were distilled in the spring and fall of 1989 and stored on the lower levels of a metal clad warehouse built in 1935 at the Van Winkle family distillery in Shively, Ky.

In 2002 the barrels were moved to Buffalo Trace Distillery, where they continued to age for another 12 years on the lower floors in Buffalo Trace’s brick warehouses. The lower floor placement helped preserve the sweet, mellow notes of the world-famous wheated bourbon recipe. In 2014 the Buffalo Trace team moved the barrels into stainless steel tanks to halt the aging process and preserve the rich flavor profile fans have come to expect from the Van Winkle line.

These extra special bottles deserve an extra special vessel, so each bottle is a handmade glass decanter from Glencarin Crystal Studio. The bottle information is engraved on each decanter, individually numbered, and hand finished with a silver stopper. A glass top for the decanter is also included.

Each decanter is packaged in a handmade wooden box crafted in North Carolina by James Broyhill II of Heritage Handcrafted. The lid is constructed using the oak staves from the 11 barrels that held this bourbon. The outside of the box bears a metal plaque with the Old Rip Van Winkle logo and states “asleep 25 years in the wood.”   Inside each box, along with the decanter and glass top, is a bourbon certificate of authenticity, numbered and signed by Julian Van Winkle, grandson of original founder Julian P. “Pappy” Van Winkle, Sr.

Old Rip Van Winkle 25 Year Old Bourbon is bottled at 100 proof and will be made available in April. Price wise, it is pegged at $1,800 for a 750 ml bottle. My guess would be though this will jump way, way beyond that though at both primary retail and secondary markets.

“We are excited to be able to offer something so unique and rare for our most devoted fans,” said Julian Van Winkle, president, Old Rip Van Winkle Distillery, in a prepared statement. “This is a once in a lifetime offering and the beautiful decanter and wooden box just take it to the next level and make it something in which I’m very proud to be associated.”