I’ve reviewed the yearly release of Yellowstone Limited Edition for the last couple years now. I’ve always liked them enough to recommend them at retail purchase prices. But this year, we took the bold step of paying above retail prices for it.
No, we didn’t start playing the secondary market. At least, not really. Instead we picked this up at the yearly Master Distiller’s Auction to benefit the Oscar Getz Museum of Whiskey History in Bardstown, KY. The auction is held during the Kentucky Bourbon Festival each September and we’ve been attending every year since a friend of mine suggested I check it out. We have a good system. My frugal wife holds the number and does the bidding while I, the competitive one, tell her (before the auction) what I’d be willing to pay for the things I’m interested in.
The auction is the main source of revenue for the Oscar Getz museum and since we enjoy visiting (especially now that they have started to update the exhibits) we like to try to buy something in order to support them. While I will probably never have the budget to go after some of the high ticket items like a bottle of Willett Family Estate Single Barrel whiskey ($700), an antique bourbon from 1941 ($1,100), Pappy 15 year old ($2,000), a private tour and tasting at Willett with Drew Kulsveen ($2,000) or a bottle of Pappy 23 year old ($3,600), I do try to save at least a little of my Kentucky budget for the auction.
This year the auction raised $29,930 for the museum. Of which I, and my bottle of Yellowstone, contributed $150. Was it worth it? The way I see it, I gave a $150 to a museum I enjoy and got a bottle of nice whiskey tossed in. So, yeah. It was worth it. But how does it stand up for people who are happening upon it at retail?
Yellowstone Limited Edition 2018
Purchase Info: $150 for a signed 750 mL bottle at the Kentucky Bourbon Festival Master Distiller’s Auction to benefit the Oscar Getz Museum of Whiskey History.
Details: 50.5% ABV. The press release states this is a blend of bourbons that range from 4 to 12 years old, including some Limestone Branch distilled bourbon. Regarding the barrels used for finishing, the release quotes Steve Beam: “In 2016, we finished our Limited Edition bourbon in specially selected new wine barrels, which lent their special flavor to that year’s celebrated bourbon, but their journey had barely begun. Later that year, after the bourbon was dumped and bottled, the same 28 barrels were lightly charred and we filled them with our 2017 Limited Edition bourbon. This year, we took the very same barrels – now rich with complexity – and deeply charred them before filling them with our 2018 Limited Edition.”
Nose: Brown sugar, tobacco, tart cherry.
Mouth: Baking spices, brown sugar, salty leather (think about chewing on the laces of your baseball glove when you were a kid).
Finish: Warm, long and very flavorful. Cinnamon, nutmeg, clove and tart cherries linger.
Thoughts: Yum. This is delicious. I would certainly buy this again and since this is their last barrel finishing experiment in this line, I’m looking forward to what they try next.
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