Lost Lantern Single Distillery Series FAQ
We have recently announced the launch of the Lost Lantern Single Distillery Series, and we’re launching the first three whiskies from that series on April 26th, 2023. It’s the first wholly new product line we’ve introduced since our initial launch in October 2020, so we wanted to spend some time explaining what the new series is all about! So we figured the best way to do that is to put together an FAQ about the Lost Lantern Single Distillery Series. If you have any additional questions about the Series that aren’t addressed here, please don’t hesitate to reach out. As always, we aim to be an open book, so we’ll answer your question and probably add it to the FAQ if we get it more than once!
What is the Lost Lantern Single Distillery Series?
The Lost Lantern Single Distillery Series is our new lineup of whiskies that are blends of multiple casks, all sourced from a single distillery. The Single Distillery Series is in some ways a natural extension of our Single Cask Series, although there are important differences between them. But like the Single Cask Series, each of the Single Distillery Series whiskies is sourced from just one distillery, which is clearly disclosed on the label. But because each release is more than one cask, we can explore new ways to bring that distillery’s flavors together and create truly unique whiskies that shine a light on that distillery through the Lost Lantern lens.
What are the first releases in the Single Distillery Series?
We’re launching the Lost Lantern Single Distillery Series with three different whiskies, all debuting on April 26th:
- Lost Lantern “Gentle Giant” Balcones Distilling Texas Single Malt
- Lost Lantern “Desert Dessert” Whiskey Del Bac Arizona Single Malt
- Lost Lantern “Mega Mesquite” Whiskey Del Bac Arizona Single Malt
We have a lot to say about each of the initial three whiskies in the Lost Lantern Single Distillery Series, but this FAQ focuses more on the series as a whole than on the individual whiskies. Check out their individual pages for more of the details on each one!
Single Distillery Series FAQ: General Questions
So are the whiskies in the Lost Lantern Single Distillery Series blends, or not?
Yes and no. They are not blends of whiskey from multiple distilleries, which is what most people colloquially mean when they talk about “blends.” Unlike Lost Lantern American Vatted Malt, which is a blend of whiskies (from six different American single malt distilleries), the whiskies in the Single Distillery Series each come from just one single distillery, just like our Single Casks do.
But these releases aren’t just one barrel. They’re marriages of several. Whiskies in the Single Distillery Series are blends of multiple barrels from the same distillery. It’s worth mentioning that the vast majority of whiskies on the market are like this: unless they’re explicitly sold as a single cask, whiskies from a single distillery are all blends of multiple casks.
Why did you decide to launch the Single Distillery Series?
There are two major reasons–one philosophical, and one practical. Both are very important.
So what’s the philosophical reason?
The philosophical reason for the Single Distillery Series is that we wanted to shine a light on a different side of distilleries that we know and love. Many of the distilleries we work with produce a wide variety of whiskies and other spirits, but they often become best known for one aspect of what they’re doing. But we want to show whiskey lovers that the distilleries we love don’t just make great whiskey (although they certainly do that!); they produce more than one kind of great whiskey.
Our Single Cask Series helps whiskey lovers discover and get their hands on unique whiskies from all around the country, but a single cask is ultimately just one barrel: it’s like a single color of paint on an artist’s palette. Well, the distilleries we work with in the Single Distillery Series use more than just one color. And these releases allow us to bring those colors together in a new way, and create truly unique whiskies with great complexity.
We want the whiskies in the Single Distillery Series to surprise and delight you, whether you’ve been a longtime fan of the source distillery or you’re discovering them for the first time. We also want them to be unlike what you can normally get from the distillery itself. Each of our Single Distillery Series releases is a unique new take on that distillery, a look at that distillery through the Lost Lantern lens.
And the practical reason?
The practical reason for the Single Distillery Series is that it lets us start creating larger releases! Some of our whiskies–including ones we’ve released in the past from both Balcones and Whiskey Del Bac–have a tendency to sell out very quickly online (our Balcones Tequila cask-aged single malt sold out in two hours!). That makes a few people very happy while a lot of people miss out. These releases, being much larger, let us put out whiskey that won’t (necessarily) sell out in a day. We want people to be able to get their hands on our whiskey without having to hover over their inbox for our email!
These larger releases also give us room to make a concerted push into traditional brick-and-mortar spirits retailers and whiskey shops for the first time. In addition to being available through our site and through Seelbach’s, the Lost Lantern Single Distillery Series will also be available in select retailers and even a few high-end bars in California and in New York.
Single Distillery Series FAQ: The First Whiskies
Why Balcones and Whiskey Del Bac?
That one’s easy: We love both distilleries, we’ve worked with both of them before, the whiskies we released from them were sought-after and well-received, and we wanted to work with both of them again. It was a delight to work with both distilleries to create the whiskies in the Single Distillery Series debut, and a chance to explore how the flavors they make can come together in new ways.
Why are there two Single Distillery Series whiskies from Whiskey Del Bac? How are they different?
We created two different whiskies when we were at Whiskey Del Bac: one called “Desert Dessert” and one called “Mega Mesquite.” Each one shows off a different side of Whiskey Del Bac, and a different side of what smoked whiskey can be. Although they’re both mesquite-smoked American single malts from the same distillery, they’re quite different: one (“Desert Dessert”) is richly smoky-sweet and unctuous; the other (“Mega Mesquite”) is intensely smoky. We believe that having two releases from the same distillery is a great way to explore the breadth and range of smoked whiskey!
Are all the whiskies in the Lost Lantern Single Distillery Series cask strength?
No, actually, although they’re all high proof. Both Whiskey Del Bac releases–Desert Dessert and Mega Mesquite–are, in fact, cask strength. Gentle Giant was slightly proofed down, from about 116 proof to its bottling proof of 115.2 (actually, this is technically within the variance allowed for calling something cask strength, but we didn’t label it that way). It may seem silly to bring something down less than 2 proof points from cask strength. But we want to release our whiskies at the proof where they taste best, and that means that sometimes we’ll proof a whiskey down slightly. In Gentle Giant’s case, the very different types of whiskies that went into it integrated together better with just a small amount of water. So, in close consultation with the Balcones team, we settled on the bottling proof of 115.2. But we think that, at 57.6% ABV, that’s still a proof that high-proof whiskey lovers can absolutely enjoy.
As with these, we’ll decide whether we release future whiskies in the Single Distillery Series at cask strength or slightly proof them down simply based on what we think makes the whiskey best.
Will these whiskies be permanent parts of the Lost Lantern lineup?
No. Like our single cask whiskies, the whiskies in the Lost Lantern Single Distillery Series are all limited-edition releases (at least for the foreseeable future). Once they’re gone, they’re gone! That said, they are on average substantially larger than our single casks, and always larger than a single cask from that particular distillery would be. Some of them, like Mega Mesquite (which is only 180 bottles), probably won’t last long. Others that have 1,000 bottles or more may last a little longer. But either way, each of these whiskies is a one-off and will not be recreated. We absolutely expect to create additional whiskies with Balcones, Whiskey Del Bac, and other Single Distillery Series partners in the future. But those whiskies will not just be made up of different casks, they’ll likely take an entirely different approach and aim to show some other facet of that distillery.
So if you want them, get them while you can!
Single Distillery Series: The Future
Will all the whiskies in the Lost Lantern Single Distillery Series be American single malt?
No! The first three releases in the Single Distillery Series all happen to be American single malt, but that won’t always be the case. In fact, the next entry in the series will be a bourbon!
Over time, the Series will range across all styles of American whiskey. Just like our single casks, the color of the label can tell you what style of whiskey it is. The first three are all brown, our label color for American single malt. We use red for bourbon, green for rye, and cream for other styles, or for whiskies that don’t taste like you would expect based on their category.
What’s the deal with the new look?
The Lost Lantern Single Distillery Series labels do look different from our other releases! Since this is a new product line, we needed to come up with new labels that tell the story of what the new Series is all about. So that was a good excuse to slightly refresh our look. In addition to the revamped logo and label structure, each Single Distillery Series label includes a custom illustration specific to that distillery, and both the type of whiskey and where it comes from are more prominent than before.
Will you be rolling out the new look to other whiskies too?
Yes! All of our future releases will have the new look. It’s rolling out on the Lost Lantern Single Distillery Series first. But we’ve also updated our labels for Single Casks and for our multi-distillery Blend Series, and you’ll see that starting with our next releases from both lines. As for when that will be… you’ll see!
As mentioned above, we’re keeping the existing color scheme: Brown for American single malt, Red for bourbon, Green for rye, Cream for other whiskies (or ones that don’t taste like their category) and Blue for multi-distillery blends. Plus a secret new color that we aren’t quite sure when we’re going to use!
How often will you release new whiskies in the Single Distillery Series?
Relatively often. But in the future, they (usually) won’t come out as a standalone release. We wanted to do that this time as a way to properly introduce the series and explain what it’s all about. Future Single Distillery Series releases will often come out at the same time as our single casks.
Why did you decide to name the Single Distillery Series releases?
Each release in the Series will have a name that we think is evocative of that whiskey’s flavor profile and of what it’s trying to say. We want the names to capture a little bit of how that whiskey makes us feel.
We will not be rolling out “names” to our Single Casks; they’ll only be for the Single Distillery Series. This is one way we can make it easy to distinguish the two. It’s also because the Single Distillery Series has more direct Lost Lantern input than a Single Cask does. Sure, we pick all of our Single Casks ourselves, but we’re usually buying mature whiskey, and our value is in finding unique and special casks and making sure they see the light of day. But for the Single Distillery Series, we not only picked the casks but actually blended the whiskies ourselves, in partnership with the distillery blending team. So they each get a name that captures our perspective.
Will all the Single Distillery Series whiskies have awesome and brilliantly clever alliterative names?
As long as we can keep thinking of them!