We are delighted to offer some incredibly hard to get hold of casks from the US Bourbon distillery of Coal Pick.
What is Coal Pick Distillery and why is it interesting?
Coal Pick, launched in 2017, is probably the largest distillery campus in Kentucky. The farm is over 2,700 acres in size with lakes, swamps and hills and is home to herds of Bison, Elk and Whitetail deer. The lakes provide the all-important water source, filtered through the Kentucky limestone and from start to finish, everything comes from the Coal Pick Farm site. The distillery is producing a ‘Wheated Kentucky Bourbon’ which is making waves in the US for its signature sweet and mellow style of whiskey. Each release so far has sold out in the local market such is the demand.
What is Wheated Kentucky Bourbon?
To be classified as a Bourbon there must be at least 51% Corn in the mash bill of the whiskey. It is then up to the distiller as to what the remaining 49% can be, which is often a mix of malted barley and rye, which brings a spicy character to the spirit. A Wheated Bourbon sees wheat added as the secondary grain (rather than rye) in the mash bill and this produces a whisky with a more mellow and sweeter flavour profile. It is technically a Bourbon sub-category that is starting to gain serious interest with the growing number of Bourbon aficionados and collectors – a number which has plenty of potential growth! You can read more about Wheated Bourbon in this Forbes article from 2018.
Well known whiskey brands that feature Wheat as the secondary grain include the legendary Pappy Van Winkle, the huge selling Maker’s Mark and the sought after Old Fitzgerald.
Why Bourbon in cask?
The Bourbon cask scene is still in its infancy. Whereas finding new and exciting opportunities in Scotland is still possible, thanks to our connections in the spirits industry, we’re able to offer clients the chance to buy early in the more under-developed Bourbon cask market.
Kentucky is widely regarded as one the finest places to produce Bourbon due to the extreme temperature cycles that allow increased flavour extraction during ageing. This also means that casks don’t necessarily need to be kept as long as in Scotland before they are bottled, potentially allowing for resale to bottlers or other cask collectors within a much shorter time frame.
Pricing and opportunity
The barrels currently yield approximately 215 bottles at 60% abv or 275 bottles at 40% before angel’s share. This equates to a cost GBP 11 per bottle at 60% or GBP 8.40 at 40% before any bottling or filling costs. The angel’s share equates to around 6% per year in Kentucky so yields and base cost would be approximated as below.
With the distillery being rather new, it is hard to say what prices may be achieved but a safe estimate for a 4 Year Old Single Cask Bourbon would be around GBP 60 per bottle. A Single Cask 4 Year Old ‘Daddy Rack Tennessee Straight Whisky’, a product launched as recently as 2020, currently sells in the UK at GBP 70 inc. tax.
Selling on or bottling
There is a shortage of barrels in the US with coopers struggling to keep up with the demand and unable to hire enough employees – owning casks of Bourbon right now could be a very shrewd thing with bottlers looking to source maturing spirits in a few years’ time. Therefore, selling on would likely be the most profitable and streamlined strategy. Potential buyers would include other cask collectors, bottlers and retailers and even the distillery themselves should they be looking to buy back stock.
Should you wish to bottle any or all of your casks, this can also be arranged and Vinum would be able to put you in touch with the right people in the US to help out.
Coal Pick Distillery 2023 Wheated Kentucky Bourbon Barrels
GBP 2,300 per barrel
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