Old Forester has unveiled its 18th Birthday Bourbon, the annual limited release created to celebrate founder George Garvin Brown’s birthday on Sept. 2.
Each Birthday Bourbon is selected from a single day of production. A total of 120 barrels, distilled on June 9, 2006, were marked for this year’s release. They were drawn from two locations: 93 barrels matured together on the 3rd floor on the northwest side of Warehouse J; the remaining 27 barrels matured together on the 3rd floor, northwest side of Warehouse I.
The angels opted for a hefty share of 2018 Birthday Bourbon, the company reports. The total yield was just 39%, and five barrels were found to be totally empty.
The 2018 Old Forester Birthday Bourbon is offered at a suggested retail price of $99.99 per 750-ml. bottle. Roughly 2,400 six-bottle cases will be available for purchase nationwide. It is 101 proof, the highest to date for this annually released bourbon.
The nose on 2018 Birthday Bourbon is a dark cherry cobbler note that opens into caramel and dark chocolate-covered smoked almond with hints of charred oak, the company reports. A touch of herbal lemon tea, sweetened with a touch of honey, round out the aromas. The taste has subtle sweetness that blossoms into warm and green-spice, brightened by lemon honey and followed by cherry cobbler. The finish is long and dry, with an herbal lemon honey sweetness, the company says.
The 2018 Birthday Bourbon is the first iteration to be bottled at the new Old Forester Distilling Co., located in Louisville’s Whiskey Row — in the space that Old Forester called home before Prohibition.