Spring has definitely not sprung yet at Lost Lantern headquarters up in Vermont. In fact, we got a foot and a half of snow last week and we expect more soon. The arrival of real spring in Vermont can be a little unpredictable. Not so, however, for the Lost Lantern Spring 2022 Single Cask Collection. The timing for that is much easier to predict. Our first single cask whiskey release of 2022 will take place on Wednesday, March 9th via Lostlanternwhiskey.com and Seelbachs.com, and slightly later at select retailers in Canada.
The Spring Collection includes four limited edition single casks from four celebrated distilleries: Smooth Ambler in West Virginia, Westward in Oregon, Frey Ranch Distillery in Nevada and Spirit Works in California. As an independent bottler, we believe that the Lost Lantern Spring Collection showcases American whiskey’s simultaneous embrace of tradition and innovation.
These four distilleries are continually pushing the boundaries of American whiskey and exploring new ways of making whiskey in many different forms. The Collection includes our very first whiskey from Frey Ranch, one of the only estate distilleries in the country, as well as our first single cask from Westward, one of the creators of modern American single malt. The release also includes our second Smooth Ambler West Virginia wheated bourbon cask, a follow-up cask to our totally sold-out Winter release from the distillery, and a unique sloe gin-finished rye whiskey from Spirit Works in California.
As always for our single casks, all four releases are cask-strength, non-chill-filtered, and natural color. Here are the details:
2022 Cask #1: Smooth Ambler West Virginia Straight Bourbon Whiskey
195 btls | 123 Proof | SRP $80
This is the second of a pair of bourbon casks we selected from Smooth Ambler Spirits in Maxwelton, West Virginia (here’s the first one). Smooth Ambler has long been on the vanguard of sourcing and blending whiskey with transparency and integrity. They’ve also been distilling and aging their own whiskey as they forge a new whiskey tradition in West Virginia. Distilled on Smooth Ambler’s own column still in West Virginia, it was aged in a 53-gallon barrel for 5 years. The nose has notes of toasted almond, white chocolate, and cranberries. The palate is rich and spicy, with clove, black cherry and deep oak flavors.
2022 Cask #2: Westward Oregon Single Malt Whiskey Finished in a Chardonnay Cask
272 btls | 121 Proof | SRP $130
Known for pushing the boundaries of craft spirits for almost two decades, Westward in Portland, Oregon has created a new style of American single malt built on the brewing culture of the Pacific Northwest. This single malt was made from 100% two-row malted barley grown in the Pacific Northwest. It was aged for 28 months in a new oak cask, then finished for 20 months in an Oregon Chardonnay cask. It has a structured and well-rounded palate with a big malty flavor that includes hints of white flowers, toasted pecans, and fresh pears. We’ve worked with Westward before, and they played an integral part in creating our award-winning American Vatted Malt, so we’re very excited to release our first single cask from them!
2022 Cask #3: Frey Ranch Distillery Nevada Four Grain Straight Bourbon Whiskey
188 btls | 124 Proof | SRP $100
Frey Ranch, located in a unique farming oasis in the watershed of Lake Tahoe in northern Nevada, is where Colby and Ashley Frey have transformed their fifth-generation family farm into one of the most exciting distilleries in the country. Committed to doing things the right way, no matter how long it takes, Frey Ranch is one of the only true estate distilleries in the U.S. This cask is a 5-year-old straight bourbon whiskey made entirely from grain grown at Frey Ranch. It has spicy, earthy fruit flavors, with notes of black cherry and caramel vanilla creams. It is our first Nevada whiskey, bringing the total number of states we’ve sourced from up to 15. Not bad for less than a year and a half!
2022 Cask #4: Spirit Works California Straight Rye Whiskey Finished in a Sloe Gin Cask
207 btls | 113 Proof | SRP $100
Located in the heart of Sonoma wine country, Spirit Works is a family-run distillery built from the ground up with sustainable practices in mind. Highly awarded and respected, the distillery also has one of the very few female-led distilling teams in the United States. Most importantly, they make wonderful spirits like whiskey and gin. You may recall our first Spirit Works whiskey, which was written about in the San Francisco Chronicle and scored a 92 in Wine Enthusiast. That was a straight rye whiskey. This one’s a little more unusual. This special whiskey was made by finishing straight 2-year-old Spirit Works rye whiskey for an additional year in a cask that previously held the distillery’s sloe gin. The finish adds complex flavors of strawberry, raspberry, and juniper to the underlying spice, vanilla, and oak notes, making this whiskey similar in flavor to the iconic cocktail, the Boulevardier. This is a super cool whiskey. When we go to distilleries, we always ask them about the team’s own favorite barrels, and it often leads us in really interesting directions. That’s what happened this time.
These whiskies will be available starting on March 9th, and we can’t wait to find out what you think!