For over a century, Buffalo Trace Distillery has been a pioneering leader in quality and innovation. The Single Oak Project may be its most inventive undertaking yet - an industry first.
It all started with 96 individually selected American oak trees. These trees were carefully chosen with special consideration for the thickness of the wood grain. Then, staves were made from these trees and kept close together for seasoning. Not just staves of the same tree, but staves of the same half of the tree, both bottom and top, were then made into single oak barrels and uniquely charred.
Next, the oak barrels were filled with different whiskeys, altering the combination of mashbill recipe and entry proof used. The barrels were aged in a variety of warehouses , on different floors and in different locations. Each barrel in the Single Oak Project is different from every other barrel in at least one aspect.
As the bourbon aged, we prepared ourselves to reveal the results — the outcome of the most experimental undertaking of its kind — to the whiskey connoisseurs of the world. Savor these unique bourbons and give us your feedback. We want you to share your thoughts with other like-minded whiskey drinkers and have open discussions about this experimental undertaking. We want you to be a part of the exciting, groundbreaking piece of research we call the Single Oak Project.
The Single Oak Project bourbon aged in barrel #80 was rye recipe bourbon, entered into a barrel made from oak harvested from the bottom half of the tree with staves seasoned for 12 months. The grain size of the wood was considered average and the barrel received a number four char inside. The whiskey entered the barrel at 125 proof and was aged in a concrete floor warehouse.
We are now making plans to start producing the winning formula from Barrel #80, for future batches of Single Oak Bourbon. The oak must be harvested, staves dried for 12 months, and then the bourbon must be aged for eight years. Mark your calendars for the year 2025!
"The knowledge gained from conducting this research experiment is priceless," stated Mark Brown, president and chief executive officer of Buffalo Trace Distillery. "We can now compare and confirm how each of these variables in the bourbon making process affects the finished product, which will only refine our experimental program and help us create even better whiskeys in the future."
Many thanks to all the whiskey enthusiasts who have participated. Although the winner has been determined, please continue evaluating these whiskeys. After each review, you will see all the “DNA” of each particular bourbon and gain a better understanding of your taste preferences. You can read more about the Single Oak Project results here."This year they concluded their extraordinary experiment, by far the most important commercially undertaken in whisk(e)y history…. Picking out the differences was almost certainly the most fascinating project of a career covering a quarter of a century."