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King of Kentucky Bourbon Bottle Prices, Sizes & Guide (2022)

Last Updated on November 2, 2022 by Lydia Martin

If you want a rare, extremely high-proof, and expensive whiskey, you are lucky because two new bottles from King of Kentucky have landed for its fifth annual release. 

But is the King of Kentucky bourbon worth the King’s ransom?

Hitting only a few liquors and bar shelves, here’s an honest review of King of Kentucky bourbon- price and tasting notes to see if it’s worth hunting. 

What’s King of Kentucky Bourbon? 

King of Kentucky Single Barrel Bourbon with cylindrical case

King of Kentucky Bourbon is a limited-release high-proof single-barrel bourbon issued to mark the brand’s fifth anniversary.

Brown-Forman Corporation owns the bourbon. 

The company released two rare bottles this year: (1) 15-year-old Kentucky Straight bourbon and (2) 18-year-old Kentucky straight bourbon. 

Master Distiller Chris Morris is behind the King of Kentucky barrels, and the bottlings showcase the difference between proof, color, aroma, and flavor. 

Interesting Facts 

History & Origin

The King of Kentucky Bourbon’s new release marks the fifth anniversary of the brand’s revitalization. 

It was first introduced in 1881 by Selected Kentucky Distillers and was acquired by Brown-Forman in the 1930s. 

The company turned it into an inferior blended whiskey in the 1940s, and now it’s back in its bourbon glory as a single barrel in 2018. 

How It’s Made 

fermenter

There are around 3,500 bottles of 15-year-old Kentucky straight bourbon from the King of Kentucky bourbon. 

Using 79% corn, 11% rye, and 10% malted barley, it is fermented, distilled, and aged before bottling between 125 and 135 proof depending on the barrel.  

However, there are only 250 bottles released exclusively for the 18-year-old Kentucky straight bourbon.

Aging Process & Age Statement

The 15-year-old King of Kentucky and 18-year-old Kentucky undergo the aging process to develop a nice flavor profile, aroma, and appearance [1]. 

Each undergoes aging in newly charred oak barrels and bears an age statement.

The 15-year-old King of Kentucky is aged fifteen years, while the 18-year-old King of Kentucky is aged 18 years. 

Tasting Notes 

Close Up Shot of King of Kentucky Bourbon Bottle Label

15-Year-Old King of Kentucky 

Palate: Oak spices, sorghum, dried fruit, caramel, rye spice, cinnamon, and thick mouthfeel

Color/Hue: Light mahogany

Nose: Honey, dried fruit, rich cigar tobacco, dark sorghum, oak, leather, baking spice, and well-balanced aged notes

Finish: Dry oak, cigar box, leather, rye, cinnamon, dry and bold lingering heat

18-Year-Old King of Kentucky 

Palate: Rich molasses, dark tea, baking spice, dark caramel, and vanilla

Color/Hue: Rich amber golden 

Nose: Baking spice, honeycomb, ripe tree fruit, and hints of tea leaf

Finish: Lingering, dry, bold, rich with notes of rich molasses and dark caramel

Ownership & Distillery

King of Kentucky is owned and produced by the Brown-Forman Corporation, and Chris Morris, the Master Distiller of Woodford Reserve, is in charge of the whiskeys

In 2018, Brown Forman revived the label to pay homage to the brand’s past, and the new two bourbon bottles were released to commemorate the label’s fifth anniversary. 

“The return of the two unique expressions demonstrates the company’s commitment and expertise in the growth of the American Whiskey Category.” – Chris Morris, Master Distiller. 

Price & Value

King of Kentucky Bourbon was released with an MSRP; however, the price skyrocketed in the secondary market due to its rarity and extremely high proof. 

The MSRP for the 15-year-old at 130.6 proof is $249.99, and the expression is available in Kentucky, Illinois, and Ohio. 

The 250 bottles of 18-year-old King of Kentucky Bourbon have a suggested retail of $349.99, which will be exclusive to the Kentucky market. 

Common King of Kentucky Bourbon Prices

TypeSizeAlcohol By VolumeMSRPAverage Price
15-Year-Old King of Kentucky Bourbon750 ml65.45%$249.99Roughly $2,895
18-Year-Old King of Kentucky Bourbon750 ml67.45%$349.99Roughly $10,950

  *Average prices are based on CANA Wine Co. Prices may vary in local liquor shops.

Compared to Other Bourbons 

Evan Williams Bourbon

Evan Williams Bourbon

Evan Williams Bourbon is way cheaper than King of Kentucky bourbon. Based on Drizly, an Evan Williams Single Barrel bottle costs around $32. 

However, if you are looking for an affordable entry bourbon, Evan Williams will not disappoint you.

It has lower proof than King of Kentucky (86.2 proof) and fine-tasting notes. 

Buffalo Trace Bourbon

Buffalo Trace bottle on a wooden table

Buffalo Trace Bourbon is an amazing budget bourbon; however, like King of Kentucky, it can be challenging to snag a bottle of it. 

A bottle of Buffalo Trace Bourbon costs around $34.99 in Drizly online, which is very cheap. 

Elijah Craig Small Batch Bourbon 

Elijah Craig Small Batch Bourbon Bottle

Elijah Craig Small Batch is another budget-friendly bourbon whiskey; however, unlike King of Kentucky, it has a low proof and is not that expensive. 

Elijah Craig costs around $33.99 in Drizly, which is significantly inexpensive compared to King of Kentucky. 

FAQs 

Can you buy the King of Kentucky Bourbon in all states?

No, you cannot buy the King of Kentucky bourbon in all states.

The 15-year-old is available in Kentucky, Ohio, and Illinois, while the 18-year-old is exclusive in the Kentucky market.

However, due to the secondary market, you may be able to buy in other states but for a very lavish amount.  

Is the King of Kentucky Bourbon limited edition?

Yes, King of Kentucky is a limited-edition bourbon. The 2022 release consists of 3,500 bottles of 15-year-old and 250 bottles of 18-year-old bourbons. 

The barrels are matured in a heat-cycled warehouse, and the evaporation takes its toll, limiting the release. 

Final Verdict

King of Kentucky bourbon does reign supreme, especially for its tasting notes and flavor profile. 

However, due to its rarity and skyrocketing price, chances to get hold of this royalty bourbon remain slim.

If you manage to snag a bottle, sip it slowly because these are powerful bourbons. 

Reference:

  1. https://www.thespruceeats.com/effect-of-aging-on-liquor-759921

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