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Winter 2020 Master’s Collection reveal

Glass bottle of Woodford Reserve whiskey

Woodford Reserve has unveiled its Very Fine Rare Bourbon. The expression forms part of the Winter 2020 Master’s Collection.

The Very Fine Rare Bourbon is the oldest release from Woodford Reserve to date. In an exciting new turn for the brand, it debuts a new bottle design.

The release from the iconic distillery is a limited selection and one-time-only product. The distillery is tucked away in the middle of thoroughbred country in Versailles, Kentucky. In its modern-day form, it represents craftmanship that balances heritage and modern practices.

To create the expression, master distiller Chris Morris and assistant master distiller Elizabeth McCall used very rare barrels of Woodford Reserve.

The Very Fine Rare Bourbon includes liquid from 17-year-old barrels, distilled in 2003. That happened to be the year Chris Morris was named master distiller. Morris and McCall have been holding back the barrels to batch with other barrels for a special release.

“The name Very Fine Rare Bourbon is a nod to the descriptors used by our ancestors to auction highly-aged Bourbon barrel lots,” Morris says. “While Woodford Reserve will always honor the past, this Master’s Collection is about the present and future.”

This year’s expression marks the 15th release of the Master’s Collection. It was created to honor the innovations that occurred at the 1812 distillery site where Woodford Reserve is now located.  Starting with the 2020 edition, all future master’s collections will focus on modern innovation by Morris and McCall.

The original Master’s Collection bottle design was shaped like a pot-still, providing a nod to the pot stills used for distillation at Woodford Reserve Distillery. The new design references the classic and iconic flask-shaped Woodford bottle.

McCall says this Master’s Collection has special meaning for her and for Woodford Reserve. It is the first time her name will appear on the bottle hang tag since being named Assistant Master Distillery in 2018.

“What a fitting tribute to use these oldest barrels of Woodford Reserve to celebrate Chris Morris’ legacy while also looking to the future, “ McCall adds.

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