After serving in the Louisville Brigade during the Mexican-American war, William Larue Weller returned home to his native Kentucky. His family had helped settle Kentucky in the late 18th century, and his grandfather, Daniel Weller, purchased a distillery in Nelson County in 1800. (When Daniel Weller died, his estate was inventoried and was said to contain three whiskey barrels, two stills, one mash kettle and numerous dry kegs.)
Upon his return to Kentucky following the war, W.L. Weller joined the family business and began working at his grandfather's distillery. Weller had a sharp palate and a keen sense for business and in 1849, he introduced the first bourbon ever that used wheat as its secondary grain instead of rye. Wheated bourbons (including Pappy Van Winkle and Larceny Bourbon, which eventually imitated W.L. Weller's mashbill) have a softer and more gentle flavor profile as compared to bourbons that use rye as their secondary grain. Wheated bourbons also have a slightly sweeter taste. Weller's bourbon was incredibly popular in antebellum America and ultimately forced him to place a green thumbprint on his invoices and barrels as a certificate of authenticity.
Made in homage to one of bourbon's original aristocrats, W.L. Weller 12 Year Old Kentucky Straight Bourbon continues to be crafted using Weller's wheated bourbon recipe. Aged for a minimum of 12 years, far longer than most wheated bourbons. This whiskey features aromas of creamy vanilla, caramel and molasses that gives way to notes of candied corn, ripe fruits, cocoa powder and dried fruits on the palate. With a finish, which is elegant and soft, has hints of mint, fruit and vanilla this wheated bourbon is not to be overlooked. W.L. Weller 12 Year Old Bourbon earned the Double Gold Medal at the San Francisco World Spirits Competition 2019.
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