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Friday, April 17, 2020

Buffalo Trace Distillery Announces Kosher Whiskies

Just in time for the end of Passover, Buffalo Trace has announced what it believes to be the first authentic Kosher Whiskies. The new whiskey is available in three styles, Kosher Rye Recipe Bourbon; Kosher Wheat Recipe Bourbon; and Kosher Straight Rye Whiskey.

To create these whiskies, Buffalo Trace began working with the guidance of the Chicago Rabbinical Council (cRc-Kosher) starting as far back as 2010. From Buffalo Trace, in order to be certified kosher, the following steps were taken:
Kosher law mandates that whiskey should not be owned or consumed by Jews
during Passover. In 2012 the cRc oversaw the sale of new American Oak Kosher barrels
in a contract of sale to a non-Jewish executive, Buffalo Trace Distillery President Mark
Brown, where they were filled with whiskey and put away in specially marked “Kosher
whiskey” barrels to age. 
Once the whiskey reached its desired age earlier this year, the bottling lines at the
Distillery were flushed completely beforehand to ensure the whiskey was not exposed to
any non-Kosher spirits.
Mark Brown, owner of the Kosher barrels at Buffalo Trace states:
“This is a milestone in the spirits industry to produce a truly Kosher whiskey. We know Kosher products are very important to the Jewish community as well as a broader audience, we are fully committed to ensuring that the entire chain of custody remains Kosher so the purchaser has 100% confidence this is a Kosher whiskey.”
Rabbi Sholem Fishbane, kashrus administrator Chicago Rabbinical Council adds:
“We’re excited that our partnership which we began ten years ago has come to
fruition. Our members have shown great interest in the prospect of being able to enjoy a
Kosher whiskey. We are very happy Buffalo Trace has taken the steps to make sure this
This new release is available for sale starting on April 16, 2020 (the first day after Passover) until when Passover begins again in 2021. The release has a limited supply, but there are plans for this to be an annual release each year at the end of Passover. The whiskey is aged 7 years and comes bottled at 94 proof (47% alcohol. The bottle labels depict both Buffalo Trace Distillery logo and the cRc-Kosher logo. All varieties carry an MSRP of $39.99

The tasting notes are:

Rye Recipe - The balanced taste of this Rye Recipe Bourbon is smooth, yet complex.
Straight Rye - This Straight Rye Whiskey celebrates the spice of rye, with hints of citrus and clove.
Wheat - The subtle sweetness of this Wheat Recipe Bourbon is complemented by hints of fruit and vanilla.

My Take

What's not to like about this? It's making bourbon and whiskey more accessible. I love that Buffalo Trace put forth the effort and brought this to fruition. Additionally, a 7-year bourbon at $39.99 is a heck of a deal. No word on if or when this will make it to Ohio, but given our sizable Jewish population, I hope they do soon.

Source: Buffalo Trace

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