After being unavailable in the U.S. for 20 years, Diageo has decided to bring back the historical I.W. Harper label stateside this spring. They are planning to roll out a permanent brand line under I.W. Harper Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey, along with a limited edition release that carries the same name but with different packaging and a 15-year-old age statement.
According to Diageo, both Bourbons were recently aging at their Stitzel-Weller Distillery warehouses, but the whiskies used were distilled at the New Bernheim Distillery. Their facility in Tullahoma, Tennessee bottled these Bourbons; the same place their Orphan Barrel releases have been bottled.
In the mid 1990’s, I.W. Harper was pulled out of the U.S. market and offered only in Asia; primarily Japan. The brand’s history goes back to 1872 when Isaac Wolfe (I.W.) Bernheim opened his own distillery.
The regular I.W. Harper will be bottled at 82 proof and have a suggested retail of $34.99, while the 15-year limited release comes in at 86 proof and a $75 price tag.