There’s a reason Jim Rutledge is a Bourbon legend, and Cream of Kentucky 12.3 Year Old is one of the reasons.
Whiskey legend Jim Rutledge has had a storied career. He is famous for rescuing Four Roses from bottom-shelf oblivion by bringing quality and integrity back to the brand after Diageo sold it to Kirin. Well, Jim “retired” a few years ago, but he had been hinting on a few private projects that he was working on. Word began to spread late last year when eagle-eyed fans spotted his application for label approval at the US Treasury office (responsible for liquor taxation). Soon after in 2018, his J. W. Rutledge Distillery website went live and he has launched a trio of products so far: High Plains Whiskey, J. W. Rutledge Whiskey, and a revitalization of the famous Cream of Kentucky brand. His own distillery in Crestwood is breaking ground this year and we’re rooting for him.
The Cream of Kentucky brand was first launched in 1888 by I. Trager & Co. in Ohio. It came and went and came again during Prohibition and was the victim of mergers and acquisition until Jim Rutledge got ahold of it — and Bourbon lovers everywhere are happy he did.