Bourbon Hits New £166,000 Record

Bourbon Hits New £166,000 Record

Bourbon hit a new record high over the summer with the sale of a barrel of 10 Year Kentucky Straight from Michter’s Distillery in Louisville for £166,000.The sale took place at a charity auction in London held for the benefit of hospitality professionals affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.

“This is the highest price ever paid at an auction for a single barrel of Bourbon anywhere in the world, far exceeding previous records,” according to Justin Sloan, cofounder of Justins’ House of Bourbon.

According to Forbes, the average 10-year old cask holds around 150 bottles of whiskey allowing for the “Angel’s Share”, the proportion of the liquid that is lost to evaporation. This translates to a per-bottle rate of around £1,045.

Also featuring in the auction were 20 Year and 25 Year Straight Bourbons, a 25 Year Straight Rye, and the coveted Celebration Sour Mash expression. Together these four bottles went under the hammer for an impressive £16,000. In total the auction raised £203,000 for charity.

The auction is proof that the fast-growing market for super premium Bourbon now stretches far beyond America’s shores. According to theDistilled Spirits Council of the US, American spirits exports are up 26.7% by value over the past decade, with American whiskey making up the bulk of these exports.

Sales also remain strong at home, with data from the Distilled Spirits Council of the US showing a 7% growth by volume of American whiskey sales in 2020 and 8.2% revenue growth. Notably, sales volume of super-premium bottles soared 17.4% during 2020, no doubt due to large numbers of consumers stuck at home using additional disposable income to trade up.

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