“Private Select enables customers to create the perfect expression of what Maker’s Mark can be,” says Samuels, who has enjoyed the company of architect Keith Summerour and billionaire Jerry James, among others on this project. You can test drive the product with a bottle from the Whisky Shop, which created its own private batch recently.
Along with private barrel opportunities at other distilleries, there’s also concerted effort in the US to release collectable bottles, and investors can expect to have access to more American luxury whiskey very soon thanks to the removal of punitive trade restrictions over here. Whiskey sales between America and Europe were stymied by EU restrictions imposed three years ago, but their elimination last month should see the return of high-quality imports into Europe; the hope among aficionados is that the UK will follow suit.
The team at Michter’s is certainly looking forward to bringing more luxury expressions to market; the Kentucky distillery’s resurgent reputation means the recent release of 10YO rye and bourbon are already quite hard to track down.
“We have long felt the finest American whiskeys can stand proudly alongside the greatest Scotch, Japanese whisky, and Cognac,” says Michter’s executive vice president Matt Magliocco. “In fact, our conviction in the quality of our aged stocks led us to introduce Michter’s Celebration Sour Mash in October 2013.
“That release, which numbered 273 bottles, was a blend of our most remarkable bourbon and rye barrels, some over 30 years old. We recommended a retail price of US$4,000 per bottle because it was impossible to deny the superb quality of the liquid, and it proved to be a massive hit.”