The latest bourbon from Kentucky’s Old Forester distillery isn’t just old, or even extra old, it’s extra extra old. Translation—this whiskey got a long two-year finish in a secondary barrel to soak up more flavor from the wood.
The new Old Forester Extra Extra Old is part of the distillery’s 117 Series, which has included previous releases like High Angels’ Share, Whiskey Row Fire and Warehouse K. All of these were created while master taster Jackie Zykan worked for the brand, but she has since departed to start her own Hidden Barn whiskey. The brand-new master taster is named Melissa Rift, and she’s excited about this new release (which was created before she joined the company). “This expression was born from a creative and innovative experiment while staying true to the classic taste which sets Old Forester apart,” she said in a statement. “Although I only joined Old Forester last month, this was one of the first new limited expressions I was honored to taste–and the extra long double barreling leads to an explosion of flavors.”
Extra Extra Old is actually the distillery’s 1910 Old Fine Whisky, a double-barreled bourbon named after the year in which there was a fire on the bottling line that halted production and meant whiskey had to be stored in a secondary barrel while things got up and running again (or so the story goes). Extra Extra Old was put into a second set of new heavily charred oak barrels for two whole years, much longer than 1910 and an amount of time that has had a significant effect on the whiskey’s flavor. Official tasting notes describe roasted coffee, maple syrup and dark chocolate with a smoky undertone on the palate, along with brandy and dark cherry notes. The whiskey is bottled at 93 proof.
Extra Extra Old is available now at the distillery and its online store for $120 (although it looks like it already sold out), and will also be sold at select Kentucky retailers in the coming weeks. You might have to try extra extra hard to find a bottle, though.