The older version of the Elijah Craig 12 Year Old which shows the 12 Years Old statement to the front of the bottle. Much harder to find these older 12 Years Old Bottling’s.
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Elijah Craig 12 Year Old Bourbon Whiskey 750mL (47% ABV)
Reverend Elijah Craig was an extraordinary pioneer in the the US State of Kentucky. He opened the state’s first classical school and donated land to establish Georgetown College. He built the first fulling mill (for cloth), ropewalk (for hemp), paper mill, lumber and grist mills in the state. And to round it all out, in 1789 founded a distillery. It’s here that the whiskey legends begin.
Craig is often referred to as “the inventor” or “Father” of Bourbon whiskey as we know it today, by virtue of being the first to store and transport (and in the process mature) corn whiskey in charred oak casks. The Bourbon scholar Charles Kendrick Cowdery has a slightly more reticent take on this history. “Craig was a real person – a major character in early Kentucky history – and he was a distiller… What is lacking is any evidence that Craig’s whiskey was unique in its day.”
Cowdrey offers an interesting take on how the legend may have gained the status of historical fact. In the face of religious and prohibitionist anti-whiskey ferment, the pro alcohol lobby found inspiration in Craig “…distillers and their supporters were quick to embrace the notion that bourbon was ‘invented’ by a respected Baptist preacher!” It was clever propaganda that must have enraged prohibitionists and left others questioning the righteousness of the movement.
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