Why Is Buffalo Trace Bourbon Hard To Find? Resolved (2023)

Last Updated on August 22, 2023 by Lydia Martin

Whiskey’s lengthy aging process and the high demand for the spirit make it pretty hard to find in common liquor stores. Buffalo Trace is just one brand of Kentucky straight bourbon that’s difficult to get nowadays. 

But really, why is Buffalo Trace hard to find? Here’s why. 

Why Buffalo Trace Products Are Hard To Find 

Buffalo Trace Bourbon Whiskey

According to their official website, Buffalo Trace products are hard to find in liquor stores because the whiskeys they put inside barrels years ago have not yet aged properly for selling. That doesn’t mean there is a shortage, though [1]. 

The brand is dedicated to releasing only bottles that have passed their intricate quality assessment.

They are not interested in releasing subpar quality whiskeys just to make a quick buck. 

In the meantime, the brand is expanding its production capacities to create bigger batches, but it will still be some time before the Buffalo Trace batches are aged enough for bottling. 

Factors That (Possibly) Make It Difficult To Find 

Factors That (Possibly) Make It Difficult To Find 

State Population

Buffalo Trace only allocates limited bourbon bottles per state. This number is then parsed out to businesses based on their past sales.

Can you guess what happens next? Yes, smaller retailers and businesses often get zero. 

When retailers do get unicorn or rare bottles from time to time, they save them for loyal, long-time customers, sell them as one-ounce pours, or hold lotteries to raise funds for charity.

This is why it’s highly difficult to chance upon Buffalo Trace bottles in local shops nowadays. 

Read: Top Alternatives For Buffalo Trace Bourbon

Historic Consumption/Demand

Old fashioned cocktail

Buffalo Trace is the country’s oldest distillery.

The distillery is even considered a historic landmark, which is why their labels are popular not just to the enthusiasts but also to those new to bourbon

The quality of their spirits also has not changed over the years, making it one of the whiskey industry’s most reliable and trustworthy.

There will always be a demand for quality bourbon, and Buffalo Trace labels will not disappoint. 

Read: Bourbon vs Whiskey


It is said that the increasing popularity of Buffalo Trace products can be attributed to its media exposure.

It has been mentioned quite a few times in the popular Spotify podcast, the Joe Rogan Experience, wherein he talked about his experience and love for the bourbon brand. 

Needless to say that he piqued his listeners’ interest after he shared his love for the spirit. But is Buffalo Trace a wheated bourbon?


Buffalo Trace in a cabinet

Buffalo Trace products are not the most affordable labels on the market, but their price points are definitely a steal for the quality you’re getting.

It’s pretty difficult to find award-winning bottles with a price point shy of $32.99 at Caskers (for Buffalo Trace). But can you buy Buffalo Trace at Trader Joe’s?

Supply Issues

People automatically assume that a product is of good quality if there are issues with supply or the item is always sold out.

Since Buffalo Trace can’t keep up with the public’s demand for the products, it only makes people want it even more. 

Read: Buffalo Trace vs Bulleit Bourbon

What Buffalo Trace Says About Its Products’ Availability 

Old fashioned cocktail ingredients with Buffalo Trace

The Buffalo Trace Distillery is trying its best to meet people’s demands regarding its bourbon whiskeys by expanding the production capacity.

However, their whiskeys still need to meet the minimum aging requirement and bottling standards before being released to the public.

In order to manage the whiskey shortage, Buffalo Trace has placed their whiskeys on allocation. 

They have to be as fair to their patrons as possible when releasing their limited bottles, which is why they have a strict rule on one bottle of Buffalo Trace Bourbon per customer per day. 

Read: How To Look For Allocated Bourbon

Bourbon Availability Per State

The availability of Buffalo Trace bourbons depends on regional distribution. This means that a specified number of bottles are allocated to each state throughout the year. You also have to factor in the supply vs demand element.

Some say it’s a hit or miss in Oregon, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, and Virginia.

In Florida, you’ll find it on every shelf for some months. In Colorado and California, we’ve heard Buffalo Trace is everywhere.

Most of Buffalo Trace‘s expressions are available online. However, the prices for the bottles are subject to the retailer’s discretion and are often notably higher.

Learn about the Buffalo Trace cigars here.


Is Buffalo Trace worth the money even though it’s hard to find?

Yes, Buffalo Trace is worth the money, even though it’s pretty difficult to find a bottle. The distillery produces some of the best quality bourbons on the market. But what’s so special about Buffalo Trace?

And for its price point of just shy of $30 as per Drizly, it’s definitely a steal (considering you do get it at SRP, that is). 

Is there a Buffalo Trace shortage making it hard to find?

Technically there isn’t a Buffalo Trace shortage. The distillery has revealed that they’ve upped its production capacity.

They’ve actually grown production by an estimated nine times since 1992. 

So, Why Is Buffalo Trace Hard To Find?

Buffalo Trace bottles are hard to find nowadays because many of their barrels are not ripe enough for bottling. Production is up, but so is demand.

The distillery has upped its production game about nine times since 1992, but it will take a while before the spirit inside the barrels meets their quality standards for selling.

Buffalo Trace Distillery is one of the oldest distilleries in the country. They take pride in selling reliable and trustworthy whiskey, with quality that has not changed over the years. 

It also doesn’t help that today’s media is talking about the bourbon’s quality, which is why the demand for it has grown even more. 



Lydia Martin

Lydia Martin hails from Redmond, Washington, where you’ll find some of the best cocktail bars and distilleries that offer a great mix of local drinks. She used to work as a bar manager in Paris and is a self-taught mixologist whose passion for crafting unique cocktails led her to create Liquor Laboratory. Lydia can whip up a mean Margarita in seconds! Contact at [email protected] or learn more about us here.

21 thoughts on “Why Is Buffalo Trace Bourbon Hard To Find? Resolved (2023)

  • July 6, 2022 8:19 pm at 8:19 pm

    I’m sorry but Buffalo trace is not that hard to find. I live in AL and visit family in MI. They do the allotments with them every month. Which means if every abc gets a case every month and they don’t always sell. There’s plenty to go around especially when that’s the only thing left when you stand in line your going to buy something. Ive got 3 bottles from this past year only cause my brother loves the stuff.
    In MI I found it sitting top shelf at multiple grocery stores that sell alcohol. So not that hard in Michigan. If a outta state person can find it then there’s plenty. A

    • July 10, 2022 6:34 pm at 6:34 pm

      That may be the case where you live, but Certainly not the case everywhere. Buffalo Trace’s Hype has far exceeded its actual flavor. Although it is a good solid, easy drinking Bourbon, just the name itself raises dreams of Unobtainable, mythical Nectar that the ownership of which will impress ALL your friends. Because of these reasons Chris it IS VERY hard to find unless you go to a secondary market online and pay $60-$80 for that $25-$35 bottle of “decent” bourbon. Along with all the other brands that also come from Buffalo Trace. In Cincinnati Ohio there are Bourbon “Dweebs” that get to the liquor store at 6am and camp out til they open to get their hands on it. Most of these idiots are not even drinking it. They are selling the bottles to secondary markets that sell it online for an Obscene mark up. Long story short, Im afraid you are mis-informed about how easy you apparently think it is to get. Maybe its easier at your neck of the woods. If so, thats great. Its a $30 bottle of bourbon that sips like a more expensive bourbon. Thnx, Geo.

    • August 3, 2022 7:25 pm at 7:25 pm

      I wish I were there then! It’s impossible to find here in my Orgon town and has been for well.over a month! Just as she clearly stated in the article, some states have plenty other states have none!

    • December 15, 2022 4:42 pm at 4:42 pm

      Buffalo Trace is insanely hard to find in Chicago. It took me 3 weeks and multiple canceled orders to finally get one. Well worth the effort but now I want a other bottle 😁

      • July 25, 2023 3:47 am at 3:47 am

        That’s odd, because I see it in next to all of my liquor stores here in Chicago. Jewel-Osco even has them all day. But there are far better options at the $35-$38 range that its currently going for. Not a justifiable buy. A year or two ago, at $28, sure. Cheers

  • July 7, 2022 12:40 pm at 12:40 pm

    I’m in Florida and can get BT any day of the week. Only pay $21-22 per 750mL at Sam’s and Winn Dixie. I could walk out with 20 bottles if I wanted.

    Weller 12 is harder to get. Four years ago I could go to the liquor store and the shelves were full at $19.99. I can find a bottle for $29.99 about every other month now.

    • December 13, 2022 5:05 pm at 5:05 pm

      Wow, consider me jealous. BT had been our go to $20 bourbon for years, but it’s been MIA for years now.

      I saw this comment months ago and figured the supply would catch up soon in Central IL. But now at the end of another year and there is none to be found at the major outlets.

      Smaller stores may end up with a bottle or two and charge 50 bucks or more a bottle, but we are absolutely behind the curve for getting this back on the shelves.

  • July 7, 2022 3:53 pm at 3:53 pm

    I call Bull**** to Buffalo Trace!!

  • July 8, 2022 8:21 am at 8:21 am

    There is a massive glass shortage, about to be a massive cork shortage, a shortage on the aluminum used in the cap. BTac was suggested to use Weller bottles or even go to plastic. I work in the liquor industry and have been told straight from BTac employees that they are sitting on the juice but have no containers to ship it with plus what I have already mentioned. It’s only going to get worse across the board on all the liquor.

    • March 16, 2023 11:55 pm at 11:55 pm

      I hope they stick with the cork..The sellers has the worse cap, every time I buy it I can never get the cap to reseal..I have to transfer it to an old open BT bottle

      • March 16, 2023 11:55 pm at 11:55 pm

        I Meant the Wellers not the Sellers..Sorry

  • July 8, 2022 3:34 pm at 3:34 pm

    Bourbon Hunting Groups are buying up all of the Buffalo Trace bottles. There plan is to keep it in short supply so that prices rise so that they can turn their hordes with big profits. This is the same that they do for Blanton’s and other allocated bottles. In MO individuals chase down delivery drivers and harass liquor distributors. It’s a sad state for the actual drinkers of these products.

  • July 8, 2022 8:36 pm at 8:36 pm

    Buffalo Trace, Taylor Small Batch, and Blanton’s have ALL been relatively easy to find in Louisiana… LATELY

  • July 8, 2022 9:49 pm at 9:49 pm

    I’ve purchased Booker’s (Jim Beam product) for years at prices ranging from $55-$65 per bottle. Many, many cases as it was my (mostly) daily “go to”. Just found a small stash of 6 bottles and paid $80 each. If you can find it, it’s $100+ in most stores. …ran out of space to gripe. Why so expensive and MIA?!!!!

  • July 9, 2022 12:47 am at 12:47 am

    As the article points out, there is plenty of BT in Colorado. In my small city, 25or less at every store in town. Not complaining as I sip BT right now.

  • July 9, 2022 11:32 am at 11:32 am

    Buffalo Trace is easily the best bottle of bourbon under $30 you can buy. I’m lucky enough to be able to go to the distillery gift shop in Frankfort multiple times per week. They have Buffalo Trace every day and Blanton’s, Eagle Rare, Sazerac Rye and EH Taylor weekly. The problem is that they ship most of their offerings to Japan and the oversees market…that came straight from an employee at Buffalo Trace.

  • July 11, 2022 10:31 am at 10:31 am

    It’s “The Heist!”

  • January 22, 2023 6:44 pm at 6:44 pm

    Hard to find in WI. 1 1/2 yrs ago, I bought a bottle at a local liquor store. Right off the shelf. This last fall, I went to get a bottle for deer camp. Unable to find anywhere.

  • March 16, 2023 11:59 pm at 11:59 pm

    It’s hard to get in Ft Worth Tx also. When it does hit the shelf you are only allowed 1 bottle per visit..I have a connection in the store and she texts me when it comes in and allows me to get 2 bottles

  • April 19, 2023 11:59 am at 11:59 am

    In the Columbus, OH market, I can usually find Buffalo Trace and Wellers if I look around, but Eagle Rare, Blanton’s, E.H. Taylor? Forget about it. I recently traveled down south and thought about stopping at the distillery, but even hard to get there now too.


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