U.S. District Court Dismisses Florida Case, Ending Lawsuit 


Loretto, Kentucky, May 5, 2015 – The U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Florida on Monday ruled in favor of Maker’s Mark and parent company Beam Suntory in a class action lawsuit alleging misleading marketing in the labeling of Maker’s Mark as “handmade.”  The ruling by U.S. District Judge Robert L. Hinkle dismissed the complaint of two Florida consumers “with prejudice,” ending the case.  “In all events, the plaintiffs have not stated a claim on which relief can be granted,” the ruling concludes.

“We have asserted all along that the complaints in this case were frivolous and without merit, and we are very pleased the court agreed with our position so emphatically,” said Rob Samuels, chief operating officer of Maker’s Mark. “This ruling is very good news, and it should send a strong message to those who would seek to gain from similar baseless and irresponsible litigation,” added Kent Rose, senior vice president and general counsel of Beam Suntory. 

The case dismissed by the court is Dimitric Salters and A.G. Waseem, etc. v. Beam Suntory Inc. and Maker’s Mark Distillery, Inc., etc.

Ky. Senators McConnell, Paul introduce bourbon bill to Congress

AGED Spirits Act is a pro-growth measure that will help provide a boost to our economy and help create jobs in Kentucky

WASHINGTON, D.C. – On the 51st anniversary of Congress designating Bourbon as a distinctive product of America, U.S. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and Senator Rand Paul are introducing legislation which corrects a provision in the tax code to ensure that Kentucky’s Bourbon producers are no longer at a disadvantage with their global competitors.

Earlier today, Senators McConnell and Paul introduced “The Advancing Growth in the Economy through Distilled (AGED) Spirits Act,” which would level the playing field for Bourbon producers by allowing deduction of interest expense related to Bourbon inventories in the year it is paid, thereby improving their competitive position.

“Kentucky produces 95 percent of the world’s Bourbon supply,” Senator McConnell said. “Over 15,000 jobs in Kentucky are attributed to the Bourbon industry and it brings in billions of dollars to our state’s economy. This legislation will not only put Kentucky’s Bourbon industry on a level playing field with its competitors, but it is a pro-growth measure that will also help provide a boost to our economy and help create jobs in Kentucky.”

“The Advancing Growth and Exports through Distilled Spirits Act will preserve Kentucky’s signature Bourbon industry by boosting job creation and establishing a level playing field between Bourbon and whiskey producers at home and their competitors abroad,” Senator Paul said.

Under current law, unlike most other spirits, Bourbon and whiskey producers in America must capitalize the interest expense incurred to finance inventories, and it is not deductible until the product is sold, which could be as long as 23 years after a lengthy aging process. However, in the United Kingdom all spirit producers are permitted to deduct interest expense the year it is capitalized. This discrepancy is harmful to American makers of distilled spirits as it contributes to increased costs that directly create a competitive disadvantage for American products in the global marketplace.

“Our bill would fix this discrepancy by permitting American Bourbon and whiskey producers to deduct interest expense associated with production in the year it is paid by exempting the natural aging process in the determination of the production period for distilled spirits,” Senator McConnell said. “Making this change in law is a matter of common sense. The situation under current law, where American Bourbon and whiskey producers are not allowed to deduct the expenses related to storing and aging their product until it is bottled and sold, is akin to a homeowner not being able to deduct the interest on a home mortgage until the sale of the house.”

Over the last several years, high-end premium American Bourbons and whiskeys have enjoyed significant growth in volume both here in the U.S. and in international markets. Bourbon production has increased more than 150 percent since 1999. Given equitable tax treatment, American Bourbon and whiskey products, as well as related jobs, could grow even more. This problem reveals just one of the many flaws in the nation’s broken tax code, which ultimately needs to be comprehensively reformed to promote even greater job creation and economic growth in our country.

“Fifty-one years after its official recognition, Bourbon is responsibly enjoyed by adults all over the world, and not just on Derby Day. The industry has grown and thrived, and I am sure it will continue to do so. I want to thank and congratulate all the hard-working Kentuckians who have contributed to building our state’s vibrant Bourbon industry,” Senator McConnell said.

Eric Gregory, President, Kentucky Distillers’ Association, said, “Kentucky Bourbon can’t be made overnight like most spirits. It takes years of age and tender craftsmanship to produce the world’s finest Bourbon, but that’s actually a deterrent when it comes to the discriminatory tax policies that are restricting growth and investment. The AGED Spirits Act will relieve that burden, create new jobs and level the playing field for our signature industry as it competes in the global marketplace. We thank and applaud Senator McConnell’s leadership in this critical effort and look forward to working with him and our Kentucky Congressional delegation to protect our iconic spirit.”

Mark Brown, President and CEO of Buffalo Trace Distillery, added, “on behalf of the more than 1,300 employees at Sazerac’s three Kentucky distilleries – Buffalo Trace, Barton 1792 and Glenmore, I want to thank Senator McConnell for his filing of the AGED Spirits Act which will lift a burden that impacts manufacturers of Bourbon. Tearing down these discriminatory barriers will allow all Bourbon distillers to reinvest in their facilities and their employees.  Already, we are investing more than $100 million in updating our three distilleries in Kentucky, and have more than $100 million in development projects around the country. Passing of the AGED Spirits Act will allow these numbers to grow even further, in turn leading to additional job growth and the increase in production of Kentucky’s native spirit, which is in strong demand both here and abroad.  We commend Senator McConnell for his consistent support of the Bourbon industry and look forward to working with him to pass this important measure.”

Bourbon & Oak Official App

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Our official app has come to the iPad and iPhone. With an up-to-the-minute view of our website and social media feeds, it’s not only useful, but the beautifully designed pages, tailored specifically for the iPad and iPhone, make browsing a pleasure. With all the content you’ve come to love from Bourbon & Oak, the app covers everything published daily on in a whole new way. Browse Bourbon & Oak wherever you want, in a convenient, easy to use app. * Sections:- Bourbon & Oak Feed: An up-to-the-minute feed of our latest posts formatted to fit your device.- Instagram: An Instagram feed, displaying pictures from our site, adventures, and user submissions. – Twitter: A simplified view our our tweets and postings from twitter. – Bookmarks: Bookmark pages to view at a later date. -Sharing: Share pages via twitter, sms, or email to your friends or followers – Site pages: A tailored version of our website, specifically designed to fit on your device. * App Only Features: – Coming soon!

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Greenpoint Cocktail Recipe


2 oz Rye whiskey
.5 oz Yellow Chartreuse
.5 oz Sweet vermouth
1 dash Angostura Bitters
1 dash Orange bitters

Add all the ingredients to a mixing glass and fill with ice. Stir gently for 30 seconds. Strain into a cocktail glass Garnish with a lemon twist. Enjoy!

Knob Creek Rye Whiskey Review


Name: Knob Creek Rye Whiskey

ABV: 50%

Proof: 100

Nose: Vanilla, Wood, Fresh Herbs, Spice

Palate: Oak, Rich Caramel, Distinctive Rye Spice

Finish: Long, warm, with a peppery spicy flavor that lingers.

Overall: When I think of rye whiskey my mind immediately goes to the thought of a good, stiff Manhattan in a good jazz or blues lounge. There’s nothing like a good Manhattan crafted the right way. In my opinion you need a rye that can stand tall in this cocktail. A whiskey that can bring a unique flavor and is able to standout from the other flavors of the drink and Knob Creek Rye does a great job at this. On the nose Knob Creek Rye has an aroma of vanilla, aged woods, spice, and fresh herbs. The palate is filled with good flavors; aged oak, rich caramel, and a fair amount of spicy rye flavors. These flavors seem to separate themselves from one another enough to give you the chance to taste each one individually. The finish is long and warm, there is a good amount of crisp, zesty pepper flavor that lingers for a while. I tried this rye neat and I really enjoyed it. It was definitely a spicy sipper but I really enjoyed the flavors throughout. In a Manhattan this whiskey shines and without a doubt makes the drink. Overall, this is a great rye if you like them spicy. It is priced right in my opinion and widely available. If you haven’t tried this one yet, I recommend giving it a go. If Manhattans are your drink, you’re going to be pleased with cocktail you craft with this.

Evan Williams Bourbon Experience Offers Special, Limited Edition Kentucky Derby Festival Bourbon Bottle


LOUISVILLE, Ky. – As an official sponsor of the Kentucky Derby Festival, the Evan Williams Bourbon Experience will release a special edition bottle of 2006 Evan Williams Single Barrel Vintage Bourbon to commemorate the 60th celebration of the Kentucky Derby Festival.

The Bourbon bottle has been dipped in a unique teal wax, features a special face label with the Kentucky Derby Festival logo, and a hangtag that details the history of the festival and the exclusive nature of the release.

This product will only be sold at the Evan Williams Bourbon Experience for $49.99 starting Friday, April 24, while supplies last.

The commemorative 2006 vintage bottle came from two barrels of Bourbon and is bottled at the traditional 86.6 proof. Like a fine wine, each bottle of Evan Williams Single Barrel Vintage Bourbon contains the exact day it was put in an oak barrel to age. Every year, a new bottling of Evan Williams Single Barrel Vintage is released to critical acclaim.

The Bourbon is matured in natural, open-rick warehouses under the careful supervision of Heaven Hill’s Master Distillers, who monitor the progress of each year’s vintage to ensure it maintains its intended flavor profile and superb quality.

Evan Williams Single Barrel Vintage has won five “Whiskey of the Year” awards and is one of the most critically-acclaimed specialty Bourbons produced by Heaven Hill Brands, the world’s second largest holder of aging Bourbon.

“We’re extremely proud to be an official partner of the Kentucky Derby Festival, which has brought fun, excitement and international recognition to our Kentuckiana community for 60 years now,” said Kelly Hubbuch, marketing coordinator of the Evan Williams Bourbon Experience. “It’s the perfect partnership, as we both offer a spirit that is unmatched anywhere.”

Bringing the community together since 1956, the Kentucky Derby Festival has grown to become a whirlwind of more than 70 special events leading up to the big race in May. The Kentucky Derby Festival runs this year from April 17- May 1. Pegasus Pins, which allow entry to Derby Festival events, may be purchased at the Evan Williams Bourbon Experience as well.

“We’re honored to have Evan Williams help celebrate this milestone with us,” said Mike Berry, Kentucky Derby Festival President and CEO.  “Like the Kentucky Derby Festival, Bourbon is part of Kentucky’s history and tradition. We hope Festival Fans everywhere will join us in toasting to the next 60 years of fun.” Full article here.

Frazier History Museum Expansion Plans Grow to Include Extended Bourbon History Exhibit

Joint Effort with Kentucky Distillers’ Association will Develop Concept Designed to include History of Bourbon and Interactive Visitor Experience


(Louisville, KY, April 23, 2015) As the Frazier History Museum moves forward with its Future Fund Phase II renovation project, Interim Director Paula Hale has announced the museum’s plans to develop an expanded Bourbon history exhibit and experience at its location on West Main Street.

The $1.4 million Future Fund Phase II includes increasing classroom space, creating a more visible entrance and an expanded museum store. This project allows the museum to serve a projected 41,500 students, teachers and families annually, increasing the current number served by 13,000 and attracting approximately 10,000 new visitors to the museum annually. Phase I of the Future Fund project, included increasing exhibit space by nearly 5,000 square feet and creating a first floor theatre for historic interpretations and cultural programming.

Working with the Kentucky Distillers’ Association (KDA), the Frazier will explore and develop the concept of a new Bourbon-oriented visitor experience that will be located at the Frazier and will serve as an official starting point to the Kentucky Bourbon Trail® adventure and the Kentucky Bourbon Trail Craft Tour®, both of which are owned and trademarked by the KDA. Initial plans call for Bourbon-related exhibits and visitor experiences that impart the history and cultural development of one of Kentucky’s signature industries.  Interactive learning programs and events will be developed to introduce and support the growing number of Bourbon distilleries throughout the Commonwealth.

Consideration of an expanded Bourbon presence at the museum began nearly a year ago when the Frazier and the KDA partnered on a Bourbon history exhibit that included the actual Congressional resolution declaring Bourbon to be “America’s native spirit.” The exhibit marked the first time the document left the National Archives since it was signed in 1964. The exhibit, which is still on display, also includes artifacts from the KDA and Kentucky Bourbon Trail® distilleries.

“Telling the rich history of Bourbon in support of this growing industry is truly a concept whose time has come,” said Eric Gregory, President of the KDA.  “Not only is Bourbon an important part of Kentucky’s heritage but the heritage of our country.  The Frazier allows us to tell this story right in the heart of Louisville’s burgeoning downtown Bourbon boom, including the revitalization of Whisky Row, the success of The Evan Williams Experience and the continuing addition of craft distilleries.  The Frazier is a natural launch point and we look forward to capitalizing on the museum’s experience and resources to make this dream a reality.”

“We are excited about the role the Frazier will play in the growing Bourbon boom,” said Greg Fischer, Mayor of Louisville.  “Kentucky is the birthplace of Bourbon, producing 95 percent of the world’s supply, generating $3 billion in gross state product, providing 15,400 jobs with an annual payroll of $707 million and creating $165 million in local and state tax revenue every year.  As Louisville joins the rest of the state in building on this exciting “Bourbon boom”, Kentucky will become a global Bourbon destination that cannot be duplicated anywhere in the world.”

The Frazier History Museum will provide space and management services for the Bourbon exhibit as an extension of its mission to showcase national and international issues and events from local and regional perspectives. It is expected that the exhibit and its related services will require the Frazier to expand to the three buildings adjacent to the museum on West Main Street.  The buildings were a gift to the museum from Laura Frazier and Catherine Frazier Joy, when their father, Frazier Museum founder Owsley Frazier, passed away two and a half years ago.

Through artifacts and objects, the Frazier History Museum tells the stories of a broad spectrum of world, national and regional history. Its renowned historic interpretations of colorful characters and specialized interactive programs have become hallmarks of the institution. To further develop and integrate the expanded Bourbon presence with the Frazier’s current permanent collections, temporary exhibits, and learning programs, the Frazier has hired Imagination, a world-renowned international creative agency.

Imagination created the Guinness Storehouse experience in Dublin, an off-site installation for the Whitney Museum of American Art in New York, and has worked with both Christie’s auction house and the Natural History Museum in London on a range of projects, as well as creating Innovation Centers for corporate clients, including GE and 3M. Based on the strategy and design plan that Imagination is developing, a capital campaign will be initiated to fund the Bourbon experience at the Frazier Museum.

“The Frazier Board of Directors sees this as an exceptional opportunity to support our mission and extend our programming as we continue to tell the wonderful stories of our region and the world,” said Hale. “Bourbon occupies a significant place in our national and community culture and we look forward to working with the KDA to share its many aspects with our residents and visitors alike.”

Contributions from regional foundations and corporations provided the necessary funds for the Future Fund Project and include the James Graham Brown Foundation, The Marshall Charitable Foundation, Brown-Forman Corporation, The Ogle Foundation, Gheens Foundation, and an anonymous foundation. Additional gifts were received from the Irvin F. and Alice S. Etscorn Charitable Foundation, Louisville Metro Council Neighborhood Development Fund, the Cralle Foundation, and the Barth Foundation.

As part of its ongoing 10th Anniversary Exhibition Schedule, the Frazier recently opened the Lewis & Clark Experience.  The family-friendly exhibit is designed to take visitors of all ages on an immersive and educational adventure that faces some of the many challenges encountered by the Corps of Discovery, which began on the Ohio River in 1803. The Lewis & Clark Experience is scheduled through March 2016.

For more information about Frazier programming, including summer camps, as well as group discounts or to purchase tickets, call 502-753-5663 or go to Full article here at Kentucky Distillers’ Association.

Diageo Relaunches I.W. Harper Bourbon Brand in the U.S.

Iconic Whiskey Brand Adds New Chapters to its 142-Year-Old Story with National Release of Two New Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskeys


LOUISVILLE, Ky., April 23, 2015 /PRNewswire/ — The I.W. Harper brand is coming home to the United States after nearly 20 years abroad with the release of two new Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskeys inspired by the brand’s historic past. This spring, a new generation of whiskey adorers will experience the exemplary I.W. Harper approach –Anywhere, Anytime, It’s Always A Pleasure™.

In 1867, German immigrant Isaac Wolfe (I.W.) Bernheim arrived in America with little more than four dollars in his pocket. Within 12 short years he co-founded Bernheim Brothers, where he began producing a whiskey known as I.W. Harper. The whiskey won its first gold medal in 1885 and continued to gain adorers across the country and around the world throughout the twentieth century.

As the popularity of brown spirits and the demand for high-quality whiskeys in Asia surged during the 1990’s, I.W. Harper’s focus transitioned overseas and the brand ceased distribution in the United States.

After nearly 20 years abroad, the brand will release two new whiskeys nationwide.  I.W. Harper Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey and Limited Edition I.W. Harper 15-Year-Old Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey were both inspired by the original I.W. Harper variants.  I.W. Harper 15-Year-Old Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey was distilled at the Bernheim Distillery, historically located at 17th andBreckinridge in Louisville, KY, while owned and operated by United Distillers. I.W. Harper Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey mingles whiskey also distilled at the Bernheim Distillery during this time with other fine whiskeys. Both bourbons have been aged, most recently, at the legendary Stitzel-Weller Distillery and are hand bottled in Tullahoma, Tenn.

I.W. Harper Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey (82 proof, 41% ABV) delights discerning whiskey lovers with initial hints of creamy vanilla flavor coupled with bursts of oak and spice.  These flavor notes are followed by a subtle fruitiness and end with a sweet, pleasant finish. The whiskey will be available for a suggested retail price of $34.99 (750 mL).

Limited Edition I.W. Harper 15-Year-Old Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey (86 proof, 43% ABV) is sweeter on the front palate with hints of oak, dried fruit and caramel.  A distinct spice appears on the back palate for a long and lasting finish. The limited time offering will carry a suggested retail price of $74.99 (750 mL).

The I.W. Harper brand will still be available to whiskey enthusiasts overseas. While the taste profiles are similar, the liquid makeup of the new releases vary from the offerings currently available in Japan, as well as the whiskeys that were previously sold in the U.S.

I.W. Bernheim was an innovator and true captain of the bourbon industry,” said DIAGEO North American Whiskey Ambassador Doug Kragel.  “It’s a real pleasure to pay homage to his classic, beloved whiskeys with two new versions for today’s bourbon aficionados.”

Consumers are encouraged to enjoy I.W. Harper neat, on the rocks or as the key ingredient in a classic bourbon cocktail, such as aManhattan or Old Fashioned.

Inspired by the brand’s rich history, the packaging for both variants features the iconic “Bowing Man” and diamond label, which has been redesigned with a modern twist.
The release of the new whiskeys will be supported by an integrated marketing program and will utilize DIAGEO’s Masters of Whiskey specialists to participate in whiskey festivals across the country.

After waiting nearly  20 years for the I.W. Harper brand’s return to the U.S., consumers are encouraged to celebrate the brand’s homecoming responsibly.

About I.W. Harper
Originally introduced to the public in the late 1870’s, the I.W. Harper brand is returning to the United States after a twenty year hiatus to satisfy the growing interest of a new generation of whiskey lovers in America. The iconic brand’s return evokes a sense of timeless gentility to provide premium whiskey to a new generation. As a testament to the authentic quality, the Bowing Man remains as the iconic symbol of I.W. Harper. The Bowing Man stands to remind us— Anywhere, Anytime, It’s Always A Pleasure™. I.W. Harper Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey and Limited Edition I.W. Harper 15-Year-Old Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey are part of the next chapter in I.W. Harper’s expansive story. Welcome home, Mr. Harper.

About Diageo
Diageo is a global leader in beverage alcohol with an outstanding collection of brands across spirits, beer and wine categories.  These brands include Johnnie Walker, Crown Royal, J&B, Buchanan’s, and Windsor whiskies, Smirnoff, Ciroc and Ketel One vodkas, Captain Morgan, Baileys, Don Julio, Tanqueray and Guinness.

Diageo is a global company, and our products are sold in more than 180 countries around the world.  The company is listed on both the London Stock Exchange (DGE) and the New York Stock Exchange (DEO).  For more information about Diageo, our people, our brands, and performance, visit us at  Visit Diageo’s global responsible drinking resource,, for information, initiatives, and ways to share best practice.