The Truth About Why Blanton's Bourbon Is So Hard To Find

The Truth About Why Blanton's Bourbon Is So Hard To Find

Blanton bourbon whiskey bottles

Mystical, gorgeous, and all-too elusive — the unicorn bottles of the world are cherished by many, but getting Blanton's Bourbon is no easy task.

Blanton’s is a premium whiskey made with all-natural ingredients and has a unique flavor profile that sets it apart from other brands. You might be familiar with it because Keanu Reeves' character in the movie, John Wick, drank Blanton's Bourbon when a doctor was patching him up.

In this blog post, we will discuss the specific things you need to know about Blanton Bourbon, how rare it is, and where you can buy it—so you can enjoy it yourself!

What is Blanton?

This high-rye bourbon is named after Albert B. Blanton and was made in Frankfort, Kentucky. Blanton's Bourbon is one of America's most well-known and highly-regarded whiskeys.

Elmer T. Lee launched this delicious liquor in 1984, who also happens to be a master distiller and former employee of Colonel Albert Blanton, president of the distillery at the time. Lee admired Blanton so much that he decided to name his new bourbon Blanton's Single Barrel—the world's first single barrel bourbon.

Since the first debut of Blanton's, the business has gradually introduced new expressions, including Special Reserve, Gold Edition, and Straight From the Barrel.

This bourbon is known for its sweet, citrus, and oak overtones. The caramel and butterscotch flavors entice the nose, complementing traditional baking spices like clove, nutmeg, and cinnamon.

Why is Blanton Hard to Find?

A bottle of Blanton bourbon

Recently, Kentucky bourbons have been increasingly scarce. Aside from Blanton's bourbons, other varieties such as Buffalo Trace, Eagle Rare 10, Colonel E.H. Taylor bourbons also reported that their bottles have been running out. Here are several reasons why Blanton's whiskey have been in short supply:

  • Increasing Demand, Steady Supply

There is a shortage for Blanton's bourbons because the demand for this single barrel bourbon exceeds its supply. Although Blanton is all about quality over quantity, the liquor brand can only supply so much at a time.

Even if the supply has increased since 2013 (the distillery wouldn't tell how much, merely saying "we just can't manufacture enough"), collector demand has skyrocketed. As a result, Blanton's is the strange bourbon that rarely surfaces on secondary market forums at inflated prices and is the whiskey that’s been vulnerable to hoarding.

For its part, Buffalo Trace has started scanning driver's IDs at the distillery gift shop so that buyers can only buy one bottle every three months. In addition, duty-free purchases at American airports have increased in the larger market.

  • Single Barrel Production

Single barrel, also called single cask bourbon, is considered the purest bourbon version. Most regular bourbons are usually made with a blend of various whiskeys from several casks, but single barrel bourbon has been matured in just one.

These premium liquors are unique because they can develop a distinct flavor profile from that single barrel. This process makes them highly sought-after products for whiskey lovers, which often means higher price tags and greater demand than other types of whiskeys.

  • Unique and Rare Design

Blanton's Bourbon is one of the most famous whiskeys in the world. It is complimented for its flavor and the edgier aspects of the brand. A single letter is embedded at the base of each bottle topper, which when combined spells "B-L-A-N-T-O-N'-S." 

A handwritten "dump date" is also placed on each label. Blanton's is one of the few brands that list the date the barrel was emptied, which draws collectors looking for specific bottles to mark wedding anniversaries or birthdays.

  • States with Liquor Control Boards

In the US, specific states have different laws and regulations regarding the production, sale, and distribution of alcohol in their jurisdiction. 

These are the following states that have those liquor control boards—Alabama, Idaho, Iowa, Maine, Michigan, Mississippi, Montana, New Hampshire, North Carolina, Ohio, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, West Virginia, and Wyoming.

These control boards may be more restrictive than federal regulations, making these single barrel bourbons like Blanton’s harder to find.

Who Makes Blanton's Bourbon?

Buffalo Trace Distillery website

Blanton's Bourbon, as well as its many variations and limited edition bottlings, are produced exclusively by Buffalo Trace Distillery. All of Blanton's whiskey starts with Buffalo Trace Mash Bill #2 (a variety of high-rye bourbons) and is aged 6 to 8 years in the distillery's metal-clad rickhouse supposed to speed up the aging process.

The story of who owns Blanton's is a little more convoluted. The George T. Stagg distillery used to manufacture Blanton's; however, Age International Inc. owned the distillery at the time. Age International commissioned Elmer T. Lee to create a premium bourbon—the Blanton’s Single Barrel Bourbon to gain traction for the blossoming Japanese market.

Age International sold the Stagg distillery and its brands to Takara Holdings in 1992, who then sold the distillery to Sazerac without the Age International brands (who owns Buffalo Trace). So, in essence, Sazerac is contracted to produce Blanton's and has the right of marketing it within America, but Takara Holdings owns this brand.

Where to Buy Blanton's Bourbon?

Only a few shops offer the country's most elusive and rare Kentucky whiskey. Bottle Broz is one of the trusted websites to Buy Blanton's Bourbon, providing a personalized gift card and ensuring that your order is adequately packaged and delivered on time anywhere in the United States. The bottles are shipped in robust containers with layers of foam padding for protection.

Many fake bottles have been floating around, and the difference could be hard to tell. So be careful when buying from an unknown seller.

Conclusion

It’s no secret that Blanton’s Bourbon is one of the most well-known and highly-regarded bourbons in America. Its unique flavor profile and all-natural ingredients are often hard to find due to the high demand. Fortunately, trusted suppliers can get this delivered to your doorstep!

What are rare single barrel bourbons do you fancy drinking? Let us know in the comments below!

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Comments

  • I live near Louisville, and have been to Buffalo Trace several times (never finding Blanton’s on sale). Yet, when we go out to dinner, restaurants seem to have no problem serving Blanton’s. One local eatery told me they can buy all the Blanton’s they want, while the retail outlet two doors down keep the one or two bottles they occasionally have for sale in a locked cabinet, without a price card. I guess if you have to ask, you can’t afford it.

    FR

    Fred

  • I remember that during the Covid pandemic & lockdown a Buffalo Trace distillery burned down and all of the whiskey went into the river. Since then I haven’t been able to find even Buffalo Trace, which was widely available. I haven’t seen a bottle of Blantons in close to 2 years and, I’m I go to a store the had it regularly before the fire in Kentucky. I wonder if Blantons is still in damage control because of it.

    JO

    John

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