Back in 2014 Buffalo Trace Distillery purchased nearly 300 acres of nearby farmland. Shortly after, they announced their intention to create a Single Estate Bourbon expression consisting of corn, rye, wheat, and barley grown on the farm. The grain would then be cooked, fermented, distilled and aged on site in their new warehouses. Since their initial announcement, the first crop of Single Estate bourbon has been distilled and barreled.
Recently, construction on the first of 30 new warehouses began. As work continues on the newest rickhouse, workers are laying the foundation for the second and leveling the ground for the third. With a planned completion of early 2018, Warehouse AA will hold over 58,000 barrels and eventually provide over 12 million bottles of bourbon 8 years from now. Video of construction can be seen here.
This summer Buffalo Trace was busy planting 18 acres of “CF790 Conventional” corn. They chose this particular variety known for revitalizing soil with strong stalks and roots. Once harvested, Buffalo Trace then dries the corn as it awaits fermentation.
Previously grown strains of corn include Japonica Striped as well as Boone County white corn. Currently, the Japonica Striped is scheduled to be cooked, fermented, and distilled in the coming weeks. While the Boone County white, the original strain Colonel E.H. Taylor used in 1870, is already aging in the rickhouse.
Furthermore, Buffalo Trace recently discovered two American White Oak trees which they cut down in order to create their own “farm-grown oak barrels” The two trees were cut into five logs and then shipped off to the East Bernstadt Company where they will be transformed into charred barrels and then returned to Buffalo Trace.
It remains to be seen what will come of Buffalo Trace’s Single Estate expressions. Keep an eye out as they continue to expand, plant and age this exciting farm-to-table line of whiskey.