Pappy Van Winkle's Family Reserve

In 1893, when he was 18 years old, Julian "Pappy" Van Winkle, Sr. began working as a salesman for the liquor wholesaler, W.L. Weller & Sons. Fifteen years later, he and another Weller salesman bought the firm. In 1910 they acquired the A. Ph. Stitzel Distillery in Louisville, Kentucky, which had started as a sour mash whiskey distillery in 1872.[7]

The Stitzel Distillery supplied much of the whiskey sold by the Weller wholesale firm. The consolidation coincided with prohibition during which time the Stitzel-Weller firm was licensed by the government to produce whiskey for medicinal purposes. One of their labels that was introduced on the market just before prohibition was Old Rip Van Winkle.[1] After prohibition, the brand was not reintroduced until after 1972 when the Stitzel-Weller distillery and its current brand names (including W.L. Weller, Old Fitzgerald, Rebel Yell, and Cabin Still) were sold to other companies.[1] The only brand name to which the Van Winkle family kept the rights was the pre-prohibition brand Old Rip Van Winkle.[1]

The Stitzel-Weller plant was opened on the day of the Kentucky Derby in 1935, just outside Louisville in Shively, Kentucky. At the time of his death in 1965 at the age of 89, Pappy Van Winkle was the oldest active distiller in the nation. A photo of him graces the bottle's label.[3][8][9]

Sometime after the Stitzel-Weller distillery was sold in 1972, Julian Van Winkle, Jr. resurrected the pre-prohibition Old Rip Van Winkle brand and initially used old whiskey stocks from the distillery for its bottlings.[1] Julian Jr. died in 1981 and Julian Van Winkle, III (Pappy's grandson)[10] took over the Old Rip Van Winkle Distillery company.

After the initial sale in 1972, the Stitzel-Weller distillery was eventually closed completely in 1991] In 1984, Buffalo Trace distillery commercially marketed the first modern (post-1950s) brand of single-barrel bourbon, Blanton's.

Since 2002, the Van Winkle brands have been distilled and bottled by the Sazerac Company at the Buffalo Trace Distillery as a joint venture with the Old Rip Van Winkle Distillery company.

In 2013, Julian Preston Van Winkle III, said the 2013 bottlings of the 23-year brand expression "may be the last of its kind", since at that point there was very little left of the aging stock from the Stitzel-Weller distillery (although he said the brand would not be discontinued)] The makers say that they do not want to boost production, as there is considerable long term risk, and they do not want to be left holding copious quantities of unsaleable bourbon should tastes, fashions or circumstances change.

Production is being increased somewhat, with a projected increase of the annual production from the current 6–8 thousand bottles to 15 thousand by 2025, but the production will remain well below mass-market levels

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Pappy Van Winkle 12yr 90.4prf Special Reserve
Paul Paclt's Spirit Journal Reated 98 The 12 Year Old Special Reserve was recognized with the "Trophy for Worldwide Whisky" and a Best-In-Class Gold Medallion in the International Wine and Spirit Competition for 2008. "Well crafted,... elegant, stately... balanced beautifully," Beverage Tasting
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Pappy Van Winkle 15yr 107prf 15 year Family Reserve Bourbon
Pappy Van Winkle: Family Reserve: 15 Year (American Bourbon: 15 Years: 53.5% ABV)  Visual: A very dark rich amber.  Viscosity: Quite a loose mix of streaks.  Nose: Wheat and rye crackers. Quite a tingle at this point. Dry granite. Orange rind, possible liqueur like in style. Slight sourness

Pappy Van Winkles 23yr 95.6prf 23 year Family Reserve Bourbon
100  Robert Parker 
Robert Parker 100 "This is the legendary Kentucky bourbon that is the Château Latour of bourbons. Pure perfection, it is nearly impossible to find and retailers hate to have even a couple of bottles because it creates problems for them given the demand. Truth be told, it is everything one would

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Pappy Van Winkle 13yr 95.6prf 13year Family Reserve Rye
Puul Paciult's Beverage Tasting Institute 95 " Van Winkle Family Reserve Rye 13 years old - 47.8% abv (95.6 proof) Until now, most rye whiskeys were only 5 years old or younger. This 13-year rye breaks the mold. It's the original aged rye whiskey. The maturity it has received while aging is quite

Van Winkle 'Old Rip' 90prf 10yr 750ml
" This fine whiskey has as pleasant a taste as any around. The 10 full years of aging combine nicely with its 90 proof. A hint of caramel flavor is enjoyed when one tastes this fine hand-crafted bourbon. This bourbon has a “rich, plush texture” " ~ Distillery notes

Pappy Van Winkle 'Old Rip' 10year 107proof
" This fine whiskey has as pleasant a taste as any around. The 10 full years of aging combine nicely with its 107 proof. A hint of caramel flavor is enjoyed when one tastes this fine hand-crafted bourbon. This bourbon has a “rich, plush texture” " ~ Distillery notes