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FRANKFORT, FRANKLIN COUNTY, KY (June 13, 2017) – Many years ago the “old timers” at Buffalo Trace Distillery gathered together and discussed the process for making Old Fashioned Sour Mash whiskey, which differs from the traditional bourbon production method as the mash sours naturally before fermenting.
In April 2002, Buffalo Trace decided to recreate this process, and bottled the bourbon nine years later as part of the inaugural release of the E. H. Taylor, Jr. collection. Named for the former distillery owner and bourbon aristocrat who used this Old Fashioned Sour Mash technique for his bourbons years ago, it was only fitting Buffalo Trace Distillery would close the loop by applying for a patent on this sour mash process. Currently the patent is pending, and Buffalo Trace is moving full steam ahead on making additional stocks of Old Fashioned Sour Mash process bourbons, which will likely be released under the E. H. Taylor, Jr. line in the future. Any release using this process will now be designated as “patent pending.”
To further cement the Taylor legacy at Buffalo Trace, the Distillery plans to start using one of the Colonel’s original fermenting vats recently found buried on property dating back to 1882 to produce some of the Old Fashioned Sour Mash similar to how he did nearly 150 years ago. “It really is extraordinarily fortuitous how this all came about,” said Mark Brown, president and chief executive officer, Buffalo Trace Distillery. “We’ve been working on the patent application for Taylor’s process for making Old Fashioned Sour Mash since 2015, and then in 2016 we discover his fermenters inside a building he had built, with an intact foundation dating back to 1873. It was obvious once we found them and realized what it was we needed to go back and re-create the Old Fashioned Sour Mash process as Taylor did it, in his early fermenters.”
Although the exact Old Fashioned Sour Mash process is proprietary and remains patent pending, it does differ from the standard sour mash process traditionally used in distilling in that this sour mash is naturally soured through the holding time instead of forcing the souring with the addition of spent mash from the still as is traditionally done.
It will be several years before this sour mash patent may be approved, provided the Distillery decides to proceed with the full patent application, or just keep the existing “patent pending” status. “For us, just to have the Old Fashioned Sour Mash process patent be pending achieves a long held goal we’ve had, as a tribute to E. H. Taylor, Jr,” added Brown.
About Buffalo Trace Distillery
Buffalo Trace Distillery is an American family-owned company based in Frankfort, Franklin County, Kentucky. The Distillery’s rich tradition dates back to 1773 and includes such legends as Col. E.H. Taylor, Jr., George T. Stagg, Albert B. Blanton, Orville Schupp, and Elmer T. Lee. Buffalo Trace Distillery is a fully operational Distillery producing bourbon, rye and vodka on site and is a National Historic Landmark as well as is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. The Distillery has won 17 distillery titles since 2000 from such notable publications as Whisky Magazine, Whisky Advocate Magazine and Wine Enthusiast Magazine. It was named “Brand Innovator of the Year” by Whisky Magazine at its Icons of Whisky America Awards 2015. Buffalo Trace Distillery has also garnered more than 300 awards for its wide range of premium whiskies. To learn more about Buffalo Trace Distillery visit www.buffalotracedistillery.com. To download images from Buffalo Trace Distillery visit www.buffalotracemediakit.com.