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The US Exclusive Bushmills - The Rare Casks Series

Updated: May 30


The US Exclusive Bushmills - The Rare Casks Series

Image by The Whisky Ardvark


Many Europeans may not be aware that the Irish Bushmills distillery, owned by Casa Cuervo, recently introduced a limited-release series called The Rare Casks in the US. This annual release from the oldest licensed whiskey producer still in operation is dedicated to the distillery's old and rare single malt whiskies, which have been finished in different casks for a significant amount of time. The whiskey is bottled in a standard US size of 75cl and made available in specialised outlets across the United States.


The series was created by Helen Mulholland, Bushmills' former master blender. In 2021, Mulholland made way for the current master blender, Alex Thomas, after almost three decades of service.


Unfortunately, Europeans cannot access the official bushmills.com site featuring the whiskey releases. Therefore, we have done some digging and compiled the key information into this article. Without further ado, let's dig in.



 

The Rare Casks No.1 - Bushmills 28-year-old Cognac Cask Finish


Bottled in October 2020 and released in early 2021, the series' first instalment was distilled in 1992, aged 28 years and bottled at 46.7% ABV. After 11 years in ex-bourbon barrels, the whiskey was re-casked in 2003 in ex-Cognac barrels for an additional 17 years. Only 500 bottles were produced with a suggested retail price of $500 (~£400)


Bushmills The Rare Casks 28 year old

Image by Frootbat

 

The Rare Casks No.2 - Bushmills 29-year-old PX Cask Finish


The Rare Casks series' second release is a 29-year-old whiskey, in line with Bushmills' rebranding in late 2021. It was distilled in April 1992 and initially aged for 12 years in ex-bourbon barrels. In 2004, it was re-casked into Pedro Ximenez casks and aged for an additional 17 years. The limited edition single malt was bottled in January 2022 at 53% ABV and released in May 2022 with a suggested retail price of $750 (~£600). Only 500 bottles were produced.


Bushmills The Rare Casks 29 year old

Image by Whisky Advocate



 

The Rare Casks No.3 - Bushmills 30-year-old Madeira Cask Finish


The third release of The Rare Casks series was aged for three decades, spending the first 13 years in a combination of ex-bourbon and sherry casks. For the remaining 17 years, the whiskey was aged in three first-fill Madeira fortified wine casks. Released in early 2023, the 30-year-old single malt was bottled at 49% ABV. Only 480 bottles were made available in the US, with a suggested retail price of $1,000 (£790) per bottle.


Bushmills The Rare Casks 30 year old

Image by The Barrel Tap


 

The Rare Casks No.4 - Bushmills 31-year-old American Oak Finish


The fourth edition of Bushmills The Rare Cask series is about to be released. It is a 31-year-old single malt that was drawn from a single American oak cask. The whiskey was initially aged in a combination of ex-bourbon and sherry barrels. It is bottled at 49% ABV, and only 100 bottles will be produced.


Bushmills The Rare Casks 31 year old label

Image by Dramfellows


 

Thank you for reading The Whisky Ardvark. Please check out some of our other informative articles listed below.



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