The rare bottlings are sourced from top American craft distillers—the perfect holiday gift for whiskey lovers that already have the big-names in their liquor cabinet.
On November 29, Vergennes, VT-based independent bottling group Lost Lantern released its 2023 Winter Wednesday Collection, which features four whiskeys made to be enjoyed beside a crackling fireplace as snow coats the trees outside.
“In Vermont, winter’s embrace can be especially long and cold,” Lost Lantern co-founder Nora Ganley-Roper says. “We hope the whiskies in this collection, designed specifically for the season, will bring some extra warmth and joy to all whiskey lovers during the chilly months ahead.”
A total of seven small distilleries–Cedar Ridge (IA), McCarthy’s (OR), Boulder Spirits (CO), Whiskey Del Bac (AZ), Santa Fe Spirits (NM), St. George Spirits (CA), and Kings County Distillery (NY)—created the new whiskies, which Lost Lantern bottled to bring to a national audience.
On this side of the Atlantic, there aren’t many independent bottlers. But in the UK, there are a slew of companies helping to make and distribute some of the finest brown liquor available. Independent bottlers purchase casks from various distilleries in order to release special single cask bottlings and create blends under its own label. In Scotland, this is often the only way to get certain single malts that either have limited distribution or are used as part of blends for major brands.
Ganley-Roper and her co-founder Adam Polonski traveled the U.S. in 2018 and 2019 to seek out interesting whiskies with the hopes of bringing that model to the U.S., establishing Lost Lantern in the process. Most of us are only familiar with the spirits behemoths who dominate the whiskey market, filling shelves at local liquor stores and giant spirits chains. Names like Jack Daniels, Buffalo Trace, Jim Beam, Wild Turkey, and Maker’s Mark are familiar to anyone interested enough to be reading this article. But over the last couple decades, the U.S. has gone through a whiskey renaissance. While this is partly due to those major distilleries diversifying their portfolios, small distilleries—and companies like Lost Lantern—played a large part of the industry’s growth.
Lost Lantern launches quarterly offerings filled with whiskeys from California to Colorado to Texas to New Mexico and beyond. Their summer series, the Summer of Bourbon, included eight bottlings from five different states, as well as a blend. The independent bottler’s Winter collection follows their Fall 2023 collection that featured independent brands such as New Riff Distilling (KY) and Still Austin Whiskey Company (TX).
For more information and a list of the whiskeys, please visit https://www.lostlanternwhiskey.com/