Buffalo Trace, renowned for its production of highly sought-after whiskeys such as Pappy Van Winkle and the Antique Collection, is set to add another gem to its collection with the introduction of the Prohibition Collection. This new annual whiskey series pays homage to the spirits legally produced and distributed by Buffalo Trace’s predecessor, the George T. Stagg Distillery, during the Prohibition era from 1920 to 1933.
During Prohibition, although alcohol was banned for most, exceptions were made for medicinal purposes, provided one had a doctor’s prescription. Buffalo Trace’s Prohibition Collection doesn’t make any claims about the health benefits of alcohol but rather acknowledges this fascinating chapter in history.
The collection features five whiskey brands, each an homage to the originals rather than an exact replica. “Old Stagg” is a barrel-proof bourbon with robust notes of oak, vanilla, leather, and dark cherries. “Golden Wedding” is a rye whiskey boasting a grainy, herbal palate with pickle and spice undertones. “Three Feathers” is a bottled-in-bond bourbon with light tropical fruit notes, a hint of smoke, caramel, and a cocoa finish. “Walnut Hill” is a high-rye bourbon with flavors of corn, oak, molasses, stone fruit, and vanilla. Finally, “George T. Stagg Distillery Spiritus Frumenti” is a wheated bourbon with cherry and oak notes, finishing with hints of vanilla, wheat, and citrus.
These brands, integral to Buffalo Trace’s history, disappeared over time but played a crucial role in the survival and development of iconic whiskeys like Buffalo Trace, Eagle Rare, and Weller bourbons. The Prohibition Collection is a tribute to this legacy.
However, acquiring this collection won’t be easy. It will be sold as a set of five 375-ml bottles in a wooden display case, priced at $1,000. Given the rarity and prestige associated with Buffalo Trace’s offerings, it’s expected that these bottles will command a significantly higher price on the secondary market when they’re released in October. As for the days when doctors prescribed a shot of bourbon for a cold, modern medicine has certainly come a long way.