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Buffalo Trace Weller Kentucky bourbon on Yellowstone TV show

Fans on the hit show “Yellowstone” starring Kevin Costner noticed something when the season premiered Nov. 13: There’s a new bourbon in town.

Characters including John and Beth Dutton previously had been Bulleit Bourbon drinkers. Now they’ve switched to Buffalo Trace and Weller, which is made by the Buffalo Trace Distillery in Frankfort.

And just to drive the point home: Buffalo Trace debuted its very first television ad.

Sazerac, which owns Buffalo Trace, confirmed that the national TV commercial was the first of an on-going advertising campaign that will air throughout the fifth season on the Paramount Network.

It looks like they picked a good show to advertise on. The fifth season opening night of Costner’s “Yellowstone” reached 12.1 million viewers, making it the most popular scripted series episode so far in the new television season, the Nielsen company said.

Buffalo Trace bourbon ‘Yellowstone’ shirts, hats

The partnership also includes limited edition Buffalo Trace X “Yellowstone” merchandise, including T-shirts and hats. The merchandise is available online at buffalotracedistillery.com and at the Buffalo Trade Distillery gift store in Frankfort.

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Buffalo Trace is selling merchandise tied to “Yellowstone” on its online gift shop. Provided

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Buffalo Trace X Yellowstone T-shirts saying “You’re either born a willow or you’re born an oak” are for sale at the distillery. Provided

“At Buffalo Trace Distillery we are investing heavily to make more of our award-winning whiskey and want to not only celebrate the fans who have helped to make our brand an icon, but also welcome even more whiskey lovers into our family. Fans love our whiskeys because we don’t waver on quality and craftsmanship – we absolutely don’t bottle our whiskey until it’s ready, and we refuse to cut corners,” said Andrew Duncan, global brand director at Buffalo Trace Distillery, in a statement. “’Yellowstone’ as a property shares very similar values, making the partnership one we couldn’t pass up as a way to introduce our brand to a new and like-minded audience.”

‘Yellowstone’ bourbon next?

And since “Yellowstone” is currently the No. 1 show on television, lots of bourbon drinkers noticed the “cameo” when Beth Dutton pulled out a bottle of Weller 12 Year out of her purse and started pouring drinks.

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Weller 12 Year is one of the labels in Buffalo Trace’s Weller family. This award-winning bourbon appeared as product placement on “Yellowstone,” the most popular TV show right now. Provided

One thing you won’t see: A “Yellowstone” bourbon from Buffalo Trace. That’s because Limestone Branch Distillery, in partnership with Luxco, already makes a bourbon named “Yellowstone” but it has nothing to do with the hit TV show.

But might Sazerac come up with a Dutton barrel pick of Buffalo Trace or another its bourbons? They aren’t saying no: “At this time we’re focused exclusively on the success of our current partnership with ‘Yellowstone.’”

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Buffalo Trace Distillery in Frankfort launched its first national TV commercial tied to a marketing campaign with hit TV show “Yellowstone.” Tom Eblen teblen@herald-leader.com

Related stories from Lexington Herald Leader

Janet Patton covers restaurants, bars, food and bourbon for the Herald-Leader. She is an award-winning business reporter who also has covered agriculture, gambling, horses and hemp.
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