New whiskey gets released year-round, but SOND—September, October, November, December—is the high season. The leadup to the holidays sees a slew of limited-edition and special-release bottles hitting shelves, as brands compete to make the biggest splash and generate buzz. But whiskey hunters shouldn’t take the summer off. There are so many new, rare bourbons, ryes, and other American whiskeys available now—before the leaves start to turn. And the calendar release date makes no difference to collectability or enjoyment.
Keep an eye out for these rare bourbons and ryes, which range from extra-mature to barrel-proof with some unusual cask finishes thrown in the mix. They might be hard to find, but the thrill of the hunt is half the fun.
Heaven’s Door The Master Blenders’ Edition Redbreast Finish
Bob Dylan-backed Heaven’s Door has released a number of innovative whiskies in the last few years, including Jamaican rum-finished Tennessee whiskey and mizunara oak-finished Canadian whisky. But the Master Blenders’ Edition represents a first for the brand: a 10-year-old bourbon that’s been finished in Redbreast single pot still Irish whiskey casks for 15 months. The two brands’ master blenders, American Ryan Perry and Irishman Billy Leighton, collaborated for more than two years to create this final product. It’s already sold out online, but keep a sharp eye and you may spot it on a store shelf. Act fast if you do: Rare bourbons don’t stick around long.