Release of Woodford’s 2016 Kentucky Derby Bottle

We are just a month and a half away from the most exciting 2 minutes in sports. Have you started planning your Kentucky Derby gathering? Whether it’s you and your best friends in the den, or a backyard full of people, what bourbon will you serve on Derby Day? As an avid horse racing fan, this is my favorite time of year. Its spring, horse racing’s Triple Crown is around the corner, and it’s time to enjoy a little bourbon on the patio.

I will cover a lot of related subjects the next 2 months and today I am excited to share the special edition 2016 Kentucky Derby Bottle that Woodford Reserve released just a few days ago.

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I believe this is the 6th one of these they have done since becoming the “official bourbon” of the Kentucky Derby. The bottle always has new art, is colorful, and brings the race right to your bar. What better way to jazz up the big day! This is a perfect bourbon for a Mint Julep during the Kentucky Derby.  This year’s bottle does not disappoint. You can read more about the bottle’s artwork in the press release Woodford sent out.

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Woodford’s press release says the bottle will be out in March. It’s usually available at your better liquor stores, BevMo and Total Wine.  The best part of the Woodford bottle is what is inside the bottle. Woodford reserve is a fantastic Bourbon and, as I said in my post about Bourbon Country, a great tour.

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I was actually asked yesterday what bourbon I serve on Derby Day. There are a lot of good choices and I just think you have to start with Woodford. I love to have bottles on the bar with a horse racing theme. The next that comes to mind for me is Blanton’s. It’s another great Bourbon in an equally impressive package. Blanton’s was the first to market and sell single barrel bourbon. The unique bottle that looks like cut glass is topped by a cork with a brass horse and rider on it. Even more unique, there are 8 different positions of the horse and rider from standing to a full gallop. At the base of each horse’s back foot is a letter that corresponds to the gait you see. The 8 letters spell out Blanton’s.

Lexington is another horse racing themed Bourbon and named after the famous horse Lexington. Not quite the quality of Blanton’s or Woodford but a very reasonable price point. Other horse-themed bourbons are Chestnut Farms and Calumet. Calumet is named for the famous farm which bred several Triple Crown winners, including Citation and Whirlaway.

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Whatever you pour, remember that bourbon is the essential ingredient in a Mint Julep. Make sure your guests enjoy the best.

Bourbon Review: Lexington Finest Kentucky Bourbon Whiskey

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For horse racing enthusiasts like myself, spring when a man’s thoughts (fancy?) turns to horse racing and Bourbon. Kentucky has a lot of horses and even more barrels of bourbon. According to the article in the Men’s Journal about the “Pappy Heist” some 5.7 million barrels currently reside in the state, and, yes, they pay taxes every year for sleeping in those warehouses. But that is off the subject. Spring is when the 3-year-olds who are eligible to run in the Kentucky Derby begin their campaign for the Triple Crown. It is also the time of year that part of the country talks bourbon, Mint Juleps and thoroughbred racing.

Lexington Bourbon was inspired by one of horse racing’s most successful thoroughbred sires. It was first launched by Western Spirits (Wyoming) in 2012. So we have a Wyoming bourbon with a Kentucky Thoroughbred on the label. Makes you think it’s made in Kentucky. Thus, the issue with many of these new bourbons you see on the market. You don’t know where they are made or anything about their age or heritage. They have tried to give it heritage with the “Lexington” name and the bottle has a very Woodford Reserve look to its contour.

The bourbon runs about $25.99 at Total Wine. Being my first review of the Racing Season I want to be positive. But unlike some of my other reviews, it’s not a new favorite. It is a lighter, less complex bourbon. It’s a good bourbon for your Whiskey Sours, and other cocktails. It is rather short on finish but has a vanilla, spicy, sweet, and some say woody taste to it.

They have done a wonderful job of packaging this bourbon to have that old Kentucky look. It would look good on your bar on Derby Day. But I would stick to Woodford Reserve, Blanton’s, or some of the other Thoroughbred inspired Bourbon’s for those dressed-up mint Juleps you want to make to impress your friends this Spring.

Age: Unknown
Proof: 86
Color: Golden Brown
Aroma: Vanilla, Woody, Spicy
Taste: Woody, Vanilla, Sweet
Price: $25.99 at Total Wine