A set of one-of-a-kind whiskeys are headed to auction next week.
The lot contains five bottles from now-shuttered distilleries, all believed to be precursors to some of America’s most renowned collector brands. Bidding for the Rare American Whiskey Selection live auction begins on April 14, according to Sotheby’s website.
“This extraordinary and unique set of five prototype bottles created in the mid 1990s represents the rarest American whiskey ever seen at auction,” the Sotheby’s listing states. “These bottles were originally produced as the prototypes for the world’s first collectable ultra-premium US whiskey series to exclusively feature closed distilleries in America.”
The Classic Kentucky Bourbon Company created the Rare American Whiskey Selection in 1997 to highlight a diverse collection of well-aged whiskeys and bourbons with varying barrel-proofs. Only two sets of this selection were created as prototypes — filled with the whiskey and tentative labels — as the project was later scrapped. One set was kept at the Stitzel-Weller distillery in Louisville, Ky., while the other resided at the United Distillers base in the United Kingdom. It’s assumed that a fire at Stitzel-Weller destroyed one set, making this the sole Rare American Whiskey Selection prototype in existence.
The expressions range in distilling date from 1976 to1982:
Old Quaker Indiana Corn Whiskey 21 Year Old Limited Edition Barrel Proof (65 percent ABV, 1976)
Stitzel-Weller Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey Limited Edition 17 Year Old Barrel Proof (53.5 percent ABV, 1980)
Taylor-Williams Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey Limited Edition 17 Year Old Barrel Proof 56 percent ABV, 1980)
George T Stagg Kentucky Straight Rye Whiskey Limited Edition 16 Year Old Barrel Proof (57 percent ABV, 1981)
Buffalo Springs Kentucky Rye Mash Whiskey Limited Edition 15 Year Old Barrel Proof (62.5 percent ABV, 1982)
The set of five whiskeys is expected to fetch up to 100,000 GBP ($124,206 USD) during the online bidding event at 9 a.m. EDT on Thursday. The opening bid for the set is currently 13,000 GBP ($16,140.54 USD).
Dust off those auction paddles — and your checkbook.
The article Upcoming Sotheby’s Auction Offers Collection of 5 Rare, Limited-Release Whiskeys appeared first on VinePair.