2018 Colonel E.H. Taylor Four Grain Release

Since being announced as 2017’s overall “Whiskey of the Year” in Jim Murray’s Whisky Bible, the whiskey community has been anticipating the 2018 release of Colonel E.H. Taylor Four Grain bourbon from Buffalo Trace Distillery.

2018 Colonel E.H. Taylor Four Grain

(Check out our review of the 2017 Colonel E.H. Taylor Four Grain here.)

**UPDATE JUNE 2018: Check out our review of the 2018 E.H. Taylor Four Grain, and comparison to the 2017 Four Grain, here.**

But when will the 2018 Colonel E.H. Taylor Four Grain be released? And will it be any different than the 2017 release?

Recently, unofficial announcements have been popping up across the web claiming that the 2018 Colonel E.H. Taylor Four Grain will be released in “the spring” or “soon.” And, that the bourbon will be 13 years old – a year older than the 2017 release.

Because no press release from Buffalo Trace or announcement on Buffalo Trace’s website could corroborate these reports, we decided to go directly to the source.

We received the following e-mail from Sazerac regarding the 2018 Colonel E.H. Taylor Four Grain:

Hello Stephen,

Below is the release information regarding our Four Grain release.  In this article, you will find it is in fact 13 years old, and we are beginning to release it!  I do not show it has been released to KS yet, but I would expect that to be soon!  Hopefully this helps!

Buffalo Trace Distillery announces a second release of its award-winning E. H. Taylor, Jr. Four Grain Bourbon Whiskey, available this spring. This is the “last call,” for this bourbon, there are no plans of further releases in the near future. The first version was released in the Spring of 2017 and was named The 2018 World Whiskey of the Year by the highly regarded Jim Murray’s Whiskey Bible. 

The E. H. Taylor Four Grain was made from a distinct bourbon recipe using corn, rye, wheat, and malted barley.  This bourbon was distilled in 2005 and has a distinctly different flavor profile from the typical rye and wheat recipe bourbons made at Buffalo Trace Distillery.  These four grains were chosen since they are the four grains E. H. Taylor would have had access to when he set up shop at Buffalo Trace (then the O.F.C. Distillery) in the late 1800s. During the 1860s, Taylor traded in grains and learned that they can vary tremendously from different farmers and harvests. Taylor consistently wanted the products produced in his distillery “of upmost class,” right down to the grains.

The Four Grain has been described as having a nose reminiscent of a chocolate roast malt, a flash of spice attached to barely perceptible ulmo honey, followed by a taste complemented by deeper Manuka honey and licorice notes. The finish is said to be a “slow, lightly oiled, gently spiced chocolate fade, which goes on and on.”

“We were so thrilled when Jim Murray named the first batch of Four Grain the best whiskey in the world.  With this second batch, hopefully more people will get to taste this amazing whiskey,” said Kris Comstock, senior marketing director.

The E. H. Taylor Four Gain is a small batch bourbon aged for 13 years, 100 proof, Bottled-In-Bond.  Suggested retail pricing is $69.99 per 750ml bottle, the same as the first Four Grain release last year. It is part of the Colonel E. H. Taylor, Jr. collection, first released in early 2011 with several subsequent releases since then.  Previous releases were the Old Fashioned Sour Mash Bourbon, Single Barrel Bourbon, Warehouse C Tornado Surviving Bourbon, Barrel Proof Bourbon, Straight Rye Whiskey, Small Batch Bourbon, Cured Oak Bourbon and Seasoned Wood Bourbon. The Sour Mash, Warehouse C Tornado Surviving, Cured Oak and Seasoned Wood Bourbons were one time only releases and are no longer available.

Like some of the previous releases, this limited edition will be hard to find. Also consistent with past releases, the Four Grain Bourbon displays a vintage label and is offered inside a distinct canister reminiscent of Taylor’s whiskey package from over one hundred years ago. These six bottle cases will be shipped in an impressive wooden box modeled after the wooden crates used by Taylor to transport goods during the days before Prohibition.

Colonel Edmund Haynes Taylor, Jr. is widely considered one of the founding fathers of the bourbon industry, fighting for the Bottled-in-Bond Act of 1897, nearly three decades after he purchased the distillery that is known today as the Buffalo Trace Distillery. During his time, Taylor implemented several innovative methods still used today by Buffalo Trace, such as climate controlled aging warehouses. In addition to his bourbon interests, Taylor had political ties. He was the great-nephew of President Zachary Taylor and elected the mayor of Frankfort, state representative to the Kentucky General Assembly and a member of the State Senate.

B***** G******

Consumer Affairs Associate

113 Great Buffalo Trace

Frankfort, KY  40601


In short:

  • The 2018 Colonel E.H. Taylor Four Grain will be a spring release.
  • The distribution has just begun, but not yet verified to have arrived in Kansas yet.
  • It will be 13 years old.
  • This will be the last release of its kind.

So there you have it. Straight from the Buffalo’s mouth.

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