W. L. Weller
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750 ml bottle of W. L. Weller Bourbon
|Country of origin||Kentucky, United States|
|Alcohol by volume||45.00% & 53.50%|
|Proof||90 and 107|
|Variants||W.L. Weller Special Reserve
W.L. Weller Antique
|Related products||Buffalo Trace|
W. L. Weller is a brand of wheated bourbon whiskey. The brand was originally owned by the Stitzel-Weller Distilling Company, which was sold several times after 1972. The brand is currently owned by the Sazerac Company and produced at the Buffalo Trace Distillery in Frankfort, Kentucky. Like all bourbons, Weller is distilled from a mash composed of at least 51% corn (maize). The secondary grain used for the Weller brand is wheat, whereas most bourbons use rye.
The bourbon was named after William Larue Weller (1825–1899), who was a bourbon whiskey distiller in the early days of Kentucky. He was supposedly the first to produce straight bourbon using wheat instead of rye in the mashbill. His wheated bourbon was first produced in 1849.
Current brand expressions
There are several bourbons produced under the Weller name, all of which are wheated. The top three brands are all produced in a signature bell-shaped bottle, while the fourth variation with the title "William LaRue" is bottled in a sleek straight wine bottle. The various brands and their descriptions are:
- W.L. Weller Special Reserve, 90 proof.
- Old Weller Antique, 107 proof.
- W.L. Weller 12 Year, 90 proof.
- William LaRue Weller, an unfiltered barrel proof bourbon. It was introduced in 2005 as a part of the Buffalo Trace Distillery's "Antique Collection".
For purposes of identification of the antique release, see below:
- 2005: 121.9 proof
- 2006: 129.9 proof
- 2007: 117.9 proof
- 2008: 125.3 proof
- 2009: 134.8 proof
- 2010: 126.6 proof
- 2011: 133.5 proof
- 2012: 123.4 proof
- 2013: 136.2 proof
- 2014: 140.2 proof
- W.L. Weller 19 year was bottled at 90 proof. It was released only for the 2000, 2001, and 2002 Antique Collections.
- W.L. Weller Centennial was 10 years old and bottled at 100 proof. It went out of production in 2009.
- W.L. Weller Special Reserve was 7 years old and bottled at 90 proof.
- Old Weller Antique was 7 years old and bottled at 107 proof.
W. L. Weller 12 Year Old Bourbon won a Double Gold Medal at the 2014 San Francisco World Spirits Competition and a Gold Medal at the 2014 International Wine & Spirits Competition (United Kingdom).
In November 2014, Jim Murray named William Larue Weller Bourbon the “Second Finest Whisky in the World” in his 2015 Whisky Bible.
- "Sazerac Completes Acquisition of Weller and Charter Brands." (Press release). PRNewswire. April 28, 1999. Retrieved August 2, 2010.