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Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Woodford Reserve® Unites with Fashion & Mixology's Top Talent to Create 2016 Kentucky Derby® $1,000 Mint Julep Cup

imageLOUISVILLE, Ky., April 26, 2016  Woodford Reserve today unveils its $1,000 Mint Julep Cup available at the Kentucky Derby® and benefiting the Permanently Disabled Jockeys Fund. Now in its 11th year, the 2016 iteration offers an elevated Derby experience curated by Master Distiller Chris Morris, in partnership with acclaimed menswear designer Hamilton Shirts and New York mixologist Julie Renee Williams.

This year's special Mint Julep recipe pays tribute to the traditional southern dessert of pecan pie, featuring a trifecta of fresh, original ingredients and garnishes.

Woodford Reserve® 2016 Kentucky Derby® Mint Julep

  • 2oz Woodford Reserve Distiller's Select
  • .75oz Toasted Pecan Orgeat Syrup
  • Fresh Mint
  • Caramelized pecan crumbles for garnish
  • Edible copper flakes
    Rub fresh mint around julep cup. Combine ingredients with crushed ice and swizzle in glass. Add more crushed ice, garnish with mint bunch, caramelized pecan crumbles and edible copper flakes.
    To make toasted pecan orgeat, toast pecans, mix or muddle into small pieces and simmer on low heat to create a nut milk. Fine strain or use a nut milk bag to remove nut pieces, and add equal parts sugar to liquid.

"Woodford Reserve prides itself on producing bourbon with a flavor that blends our historic past with our current innovative style, and this year's special Mint Julep recipe does just that," says Woodford Reserve Master Distiller Chris Morris.

The signature $1,000 Mint Julep Cups were designed by Houston-based men's shirt designer Hamilton Shirts and handcrafted at Louisville-based jeweler From the Vault.

"The $1,000 Mint Julep Cup is representative of our approach to design, with an engraved classic plaid graphic and stitch beading," said David Hamilton, a fourth-generation co-owner of Hamilton Shirts. "As a family-owned company rooted in heritage and tradition, we're honored to be a part of an event as iconic as the Kentucky Derby, and thrilled to work alongside Woodford Reserve."

In addition to the cups themselves, Hamilton also developed an exclusive, limited edition fabric that will accompany each cup in its box's lining.

"Partnering with two talented artists represents our commitment to create an unparalleled experience for Kentucky Derby fans," said Morris. "Woodford Reserve has donated more than $425,000 to equine and humanitarian-related causes through this program, and we are proud to continue to positively impact these communities through this year's $1,000 Mint Julep Cup."

Each year, Woodford Reserve selects a charitable organization to receive the net proceeds from the $1,000 Mint Julep Cup sales. This year's receiving charity is the Permanently Disabled Jockeys Fund, which works to provide financial assistance to former jockeys who have suffered catastrophic on-track injuries.

"The Permanently Disabled Jockeys Fund greatly appreciates being chosen once again by Woodford Reserve to receive the funds raised by their $1,000 Mint Julep Cup program," said Nancy LaSala, the organization's president. "We are grateful for their contribution and help in continuing to aid injured jockeys."

How to Purchase a Cup
Beginning April 26, 2016 at 3:00 p.m. E.T., consumers ages 21 years and older can log on to to purchase one of the Crafter's Cups or Master's Cups. Each cup is presented in an oak box designed by Nashville woodworkerChristian Fecht, and lined with a custom silk fabric designed by the Houston-based menswear brand Hamilton Shirts®. Online sale closes on May 6, 2016 at 12:00 p.m. E.T.

Any unsold cups will be available for purchase at Churchill Downs® on Kentucky Derby Day.  Purchase of cup does not include admission to Churchill Downs. Purchased cups must be claimed by buyer or his or her proxy at Churchill Downs on Derby Day.  For complete terms and conditions, please visit .

Crafter's Cups
90 Crafter's Cups are available for purchase online for $1,000 on a first come, first buy basis from April 26-May 6. These individually numbered cups feature Hamilton's classic plaid pattern, along with the 2016 Kentucky Derby date and Woodford Reserve logo, and is accompanied by a gold-plated sipping straw.

Master's Cups
In addition to the 90 $1,000 Crafter's Cups, there are 15 gold-plated Master's Cups available for purchase online for $2,500 on a first come, first buy basis. These individually numbered cups feature Hamilton's classic plaid pattern accented with diamonds, along with the 2016 Kentucky Derby date and Woodford Reserve logo and is accompanied by a silver sipping straw.

Tuesday, April 26, 2016

Michter's Releases Its 2016 Limited Production US*1 Barrel Strength Rye

Michter's Limited Release US*1 Barrel Strength Rye

LOUISVILLE, Ky., April 26, 2016  -- This Spring will mark the second time that Michter's Distillery, based in Louisville, Kentucky, is releasing its US*1 Barrel Strength Rye.  The release will be on a limited basis.

A Kentucky Straight Rye, Michter's Barrel Strength Rye is bottled at barrel strength rather than the 84.8 proof alcohol level of Michter's US*1 Single Barrel Rye.  The barrel entry proof for the product was 103 proof, a strength that Michter's believes yields a richer, smoother product than a higher entry proof would.  After aging, the barrel proof for the majority of barrels of this second release bottled so far have fallen between 110.2 proof and 114.8 proof

Michter's Limited Release US*1 Barrel Strength Rye

"To enter the distillate for our US*1 Rye and our US*1 Bourbon into the barrel at 103 proof instead of a higher, more industry standard proof is very expensive, but our goal at Michter's is to produce the greatest whiskey possible, regardless of the cost," said Michter's President, Joseph J. Magliocco.

Michter's has a rich legacy of offering traditional American whiskeys of uncompromising quality with each type of whiskey aged to its peak maturity.  Michter's highly acclaimed portfolio includes single barrel rye, small batch American whiskey, sour mash whiskey, single barrel bourbon, and small batch bourbon.

Michter's US*1 Barrel Strength Rye is offered in the U.S. at a suggested retail price of $75 per 750ml bottle.

Thursday, April 21, 2016

Beach Whiskey™ Brings the Beach to WSWA

LOS ANGELES, April 20, 2016  -- The ultimate beach party has begun and Beach Whiskey™, a new meticulously crafted flavored American whiskey, is live at the Wine & Spirits Wholesalers of America WSWA in Vegas

Launching in June 2016, Beach Whiskey (SRP $23.99, 750ml) celebrates the beach lifestyle and all that comes with it… parties, sports, relaxing, good music, and having fun.  Even the packaging—an etched label on custom sea glass bottles—is designed to evoke the spirit of the beach life and bring whiskey to day time.

the great new brands that drive it," said J. Smoke Wallin, co-founder & CEO of Beach Whiskey and former Chairman and President of WSWA.  "What better place to bring a bit of the beach than to the Vegas desert?"

During WSWA, Beach Whiskey will be transforming the Caesar's Palace Lower Level / ROMAN III Suite into a beach party – Vegas style. Highlights include:

  • A premiere of country music star and Beach Whiskey co-founder Jake Owen's first ever 360 video for his new hit "American Country Love Song."
  • A meet and great and live performance by Jake Owen.
  • A meet and greet with TV and radio personality and Beach Whiskey co-founder Billy Bush.
  • Highlights from the Beach Whiskey Music Wave – Beach Whiskey's national campaign to bring great music from multiple genres to beach and whiskey lovers across the countryThe initial list of the performers includes:

Initially available in Florida, California and New York, the Beach Whiskey portfolio includes Bonfire Cinnamon™ (35% ABV / 70 proof) and Island Coconut™ (26% ABV / 52 proof).

Wednesday, April 20, 2016

Beach Whiskey™ Announces Veteran Spirits Team

LOS ANGELES, April 20, 2016-- Beach Whiskey™, a new meticulously crafted flavored American whiskey, announced new additions to their core team of industry veterans.

Bill Henderson joins as Chief Marketing Officer, leading all brand marketing and strategic communication for Beach Whiskey. Henderson previously served as Executive Vice President for Sidney Frank Importing Company, Inc., where, during an 18-year career, he played a key role in the creation, promotion and expansion of brands such as Grey Goose, J├Ągermeister, Casamigos and American Harvest. Henderson began his career in the wine & spirits industry with M. Shanken Communications.

Denise Raab has been named Regional Vice President of Sales, responsible for sales leadership for Beach Whiskey. Prior to joining Beach Whiskey, Raab served as State Manager New York at Sidney Frank Importing Company, Inc. with previous roles as State Manager for Massachusetts and Kentucky. During her 10 year-career she was integral to the launch and sales success of brands such as Casamigos, Monkey 47 and American Harvest.

Michael Tolley joins as Vice President, On-Premise Sales & Training. Tolley will drive sales and training as Beach Whiskey expands through the on-premise channel. During a career of more than two decades, Tolley has gained invaluable experience building successful on-premise businesses, advising brands and training some of the world's leading operators. He is an award-winning Bartender, Beverage Manager, ShowTender, National Marketing Director, Restaurant and Bar Owner Operator.

"I am thrilled to not only showcase our exceptional new brand – Beach Whiskey – to the attendees at WSWA, but also demonstrate the depth of the experienced talent of our executive team," said J. Smoke Wallin, Co-Founder and CEO of Beach Whiskey and former Chairman & President of WSWA. "This cadre of seasoned beverage veterans have demonstrated an extraordinary ability to drive new brands from inception to distribution to retail to the consumer, and Beach Whiskey is in great hands."

"When I left Sidney Frank, I took my time to select my next move. Beach Whiskey captured my imagination," said Bill Henderson, Chief Marketing Officer, Beach Whiskey. "The brand, the liquid, the founding partners and the leadership all scream success – right time, right place, right brand."

Launching in June 2016, Beach Whiskey (SRP $23.99, 750ml) celebrates the beach life and all that comes with it…parties, sports, relaxing, good music, and having fun. Even the packaging—an etched label on custom sea glass bottles—is designed to evoke the spirit of the beach life and bring whiskey to day time.

Friday, April 15, 2016

The Bardstown Bourbon Company Installs 50-Foot Stainless Steel Vendome Still at New Distillery Site

imageBARDSTOWN, KY -The Bardstown Bourbon Company achieved a major milestone today with the installation of its 50-foot tall, custom made, 36-inch stainless steel Vendome Copper & Brass Works still. Delivered in one piece, and hoisted above the 55-foot still tower by crane, the Vendome apparatus was lowered into the center of the building. This helped Bardstown Bourbon Company inch one step closer to opening its state-of-the-art whiskey distillery, which is scheduled to begin operations by September 2016, in “The Bourbon Capitol of the World.”

The Bardstown Bourbon Company’s still features a unique design, incorporating large, rectangular glass manways – a shape never before used by Vendome in still manufacturing – that enables visitors to watch the whiskey moving through the distilling process. The use of glass also reflects the transparent nature of the Company’s approach to whiskey making. No secrets, mythical stories, or fabricated legends, the Bardstown Bourbon Company celebrates the craft of making great whiskey and the Bardstown community that brings bourbon to the world.

“The Bardstown Bourbon Company is just a few short months away from becoming a significant addition to the American whiskey landscape,” said David Mandell, President & CEO. “With the development of our own brands, new Collaborative Distilling Program, and unique visitors experience, we will continue to fuel interest, innovation, and growth across the entire whiskey category.”

“We can’t wait to start the whiskey flowing at the largest new distillery in the country,” said Steve Nally, Master Distiller. “It’s an exciting time for bourbon and we’re proud to be at the forefront of innovation.”

The Bardstown Bourbon Company in its current configuration has a 1.5 million proof gallon annual capacity, which can be expanded to six million proof gallons within the current design of the distillery.

Thursday, April 14, 2016

Spirit Consulting Group Acquires Midnight Solutions

imageNew York – Spirits Consulting Group (“SCG”), a leading firm that specializes in brand

development for the liquor industry, announced today the acquisition of Midnight

Solutions Management, a spirits sales strategy and marketing agency.

Midnight Solutions owner Shu de Jong will remain an integral part of the team and will

serve as Managing Director of SCG. De Jong will head up national sales and major

account management for SCG while SCG Founder Susan Mooney will remain CEO and

director of branding, product development and the strategic planning service modules.

“Shu’s long-standing relationships and ability to meaningfully expand our brand

representation and sales services nationally is a major asset to increase the breadth of

services for new and existing clients,” said Mooney.

“After much discussion, Susan and I determined that our companies’ skill sets are aligned

to provide the counsel necessary to successfully launch and incubate new brands in this

competitive industry,” said de Jong.

De Jong has had notable successes in the spirits business for over 20 years. In 2002, he

co-founded Panache Imports, which became the importer on record and partner of 42

Below Vodka in North America. He was responsible for building the brand’s image,

identity and sales nationally while guiding it to a very lucrative acquisition in 2007 by

Bacardi USA.

Shu then created and launched his second company called Panache Beverages, which

owned, sold and marketed Wodka Vodka, Alchemia Vodka and Alibi American

Whiskey. Following his time with Panache Beverages, de Jong redirected his skills and

experience to counsel spirit entrepreneurs to build their brands through Midnight

Solutions Management.

“I kept hearing that SCG was the place to go to incubate your brand. When I met Susan,

we discovered we had similar relationships, our approach to the business was aligned we

have complementary skills, so it was pretty much a no-brainer for me”. Says de Jong.

SCG was founded by Mooney in 2010 after identifying a hole in the market for a one-stop-shop that provides solutions for successfully launching new spirits brands. She

found that brands were introduced either by behemoths who lacked the structure, culture

or team necessary for innovative new brands or brands that were started by independent

entrepreneurs with little experience growing companies effectively or managing teams in

the federally mandated 3-tier system for alcohol companies.

Furthermore, smaller brands wasted time and resources working with multiple agencies

that often produced disjointed results at just the moment a brand needed to be laser

focused and consistent. Tight, integrated teams and sales and marketing efforts are a

hallmark of SCG’s approach.

“We are passionate about innovative brands - either in their approach or their product- we

roll up our sleeves to get their sales going, their marketing sharp and to place the brands

on the map in an cluttered and competitive industry. This acquisition gives SCG a

significant advantage and provides a stronghold on advisory and consultancy both on a

national and international level. SCG will to continue to seek relevant brands, find

interesting new brands and to continue to expand,” said Mooney.

Wednesday, April 13, 2016

Old Forester Releases Renderings of New Whiskey Row Distillery

imageLOUISVILLE, KY Old Forester released eleven renderings of the new Old Forester Distillery at a media event in New York City. The renderings feature the progression of the distillery, capturing the architectural design, barrel to bottling process, and overall tour experience.

Located at 117 and 119 Main Street along Louisville’s historic “Whiskey Row,” the distillery and bourbon experience will be a world-class distilling operation and visitor’s destination showcasing the supreme craftsmanship of Old Forester, America’s First Bottled Bourbon™. In detail, the renderings highlight key locations within the distillery such as the welcome area, fermentation room, cooperage, tasting room, and bottling line.

“Upon Completion, the Old Forester Distillery will provide tourists and bourbon enthusiasts with an up close look at our bourbon making process and share with them a captivating story of entrepreneurship and achievement that characterizes Old Forester’s 146 year history,” said Old Forester President and fifth generation family member, Campbell Brown.

The distillery will celebrate founder George Garvin Brown’s innovative spirit and his commitment to making the highest quality bourbon. Old Forester is the longest, continuously distilled bourbon produced before, during and after prohibition by the same family. Including fermentation, distilling, barrel making, aging and bottling, the distillery will produce 100,000 cases of Old Forester annually.

“The Old Forester Distillery is a state-of-the-art project that will add an additional layer of history and authenticity to Louisville’s Whiskey Row,” said Project Manager, Mike Beach. “We are both proud and excited about the distillery’s capabilities to showcase the bourbon making process for visitors from around the world.”

Construction of the 60,000 square foot distillery is set to be complete by late 2017.

Tuesday, April 5, 2016

Branded Spirits USA Launches Ol' Major Bacon Bourbon

imageSAN FRANCISCO, April 5, 2016  -- Nick Chen, Master of all things "spirits", and his brother visited a restaurant that was featuring a bacon bourbon cocktail.  Bacon and bourbon are two of the most popular obsessions, and Nick's brother exclaimed, "Nick, you need to create a Bacon Bourbon!"

Nick and his brother created a website, The website had 20K+ hits in the first few days.

Nick's latest edition to this award winning portfolio of craft spirits is Ol' Major Bacon Bourbon, a Jimmy Fallon approved "category" of cocktails.  Jimmy hosted a feature on "Late Night with Jimmy Fallon" about the popularity of bourbon cocktails.

Jimmy Fallon stated about the category, "Oh, it's fantastic! It just has a subtle hint of it ... And everything's better with bacon," says Fallon, April 5, 2013.

Ol' Major is beginning to go viral with bartenders and master mixologists around the country, creating magical unique types of cocktails. Some of the best Bloody Marys, Old Fashions and Manhattans - the mix ability and opportunities for cocktail recipes are boundless. Consumers of Ol' Major are pleasantly surprised, and in fact consumers find it to be delectable.

"This product has no chance of failing." – Eva Meszaros, Editor, Specialty Food Magazine

"Mmm. We approve of anything with bacon in it."

Ol' Major gently infuses the bacon, the award winning bourbon with its proprietary process of pressure infusion, melding the two together. There is a lot of love in the bottles


Nick Chen stated, "We knew people would love our product." Chen says, "What we didn't know is that it would grow so darn fast!"