When Joe Magliocco bought Michter’s Distillery in 1990, he had one goal: “To make the greatest American whiskey.” To achieve it, Magliocco and his partner moved operations from Pennsylvania to Louisville, Kentucky – the American whiskey heartland – and built upon a whiskey-making heritage that dates back to 1753.
Quality Trumps Quantity
Michter’s uses the finest ingredients and the best-quality equipment to make its signature house style, crafting its whiskies in small quantities – about 20 barrels per batch. This hands-on, small-batch approach is winning the distillery fans and awards, including Whisky of the Year (2019) from the Whisky Exchange for Michter’s Toasted Barrel Sour Mash.
The Proof Is in the Spirit
Michter’s starts its rye and Bourbon in the barrel at 103 proof (51.5% ABV), much lower than the industry standard of 125 proof. While this lower entry point yields fewer barrels, it makes it easier for the concentrated sugars to dissolve and deliver rich, smooth flavours.
Unique Barrel-Aging Methods
Michter’s selects 18- to 48-month-old charred and toasted barrels to impart extra flavour and lower harsh-tasting tannins. During the aging process, the distillery uses an uncommon and costly practice called heat cycling – raising and lowering the temperatures in the warehouse – which increases the amount of whiskey that evaporates in every batch, but pays off when it comes to taste.
Customized Chill Filtering
Since carbon filtering can strip away a spirit’s flavours and aromas, Michter’s opts for chill filtering, using a different approach that’s tailored to each style of whiskey and determined by the desired results.
Aged to Taste
Rather than releasing its whiskies after they’ve matured for a set amount of time, Michter’s ages every batch to taste, relying on the Master Distiller and tasting panel to give each batch its stamp of approval.