Pappy Van Winkle, the line of whiskeys that has bourbon drinkers and collectors getting as riled up as a teenager going on his first date, is about to be released for 2018 and this time, one bar in Lexington, Kentucky is doing something a little special: They’re selling the stuff at cost.
Now, if you’ve spent any amount of time around anyone who drinks bourbon, you would know that hardly anywhere sells Pappy Van Winkle at cost. You’d be lucky to get a bottle of it at a secondary market pricing in a liquor store. (It’s also why our chosen April Fool’s Day joke this year was to “give away” a bottle of Pappy 23. Sorry not sorry.)
The bar in question is the 85-year-old Chevy Chase Inn, the oldest bar in Lexington, Kentucky. This one-day-only Pap-stravaganza, otherwise known as the First Annual Pappy Thanksgiving, will take place on Sunday, November 18. On that wonderful day, the bar will sell its entire allotment of the whiskeys. Quick, figure out how to get to Lexington.
“The prices being charged for Pappy Van Winkle has gotten out of control. So many people right here in the heart of bourbon country can’t afford to try this delicious bourbon.”
The reasoning behind the move, according to Kevin Heathcoat, one of the owners of the Chevy Chase Inn, is simple.
“We feel that bourbon this special should be enjoyed, not looked at. The prices being charged for Pappy Van Winkle has gotten out of control. So many people right here in the heart of bourbon country can’t afford to try this delicious bourbon,” Heathcoat said in a statement. “Pappy is actually one of the most reasonably priced ultra-premium bourbons when it leaves the warehouse. Our industry and the secondary market is ruining it for working-class bourbon lovers everywhere.”
Heathcoat added, “My partners and I had been enjoying some great Kentucky bourbon when our Pappy was delivered. One of us said, ‘Wouldn’t it be nice if everyone could afford to try these bourbons?’ That is when we got the idea to host our First Annual Pappy Thanksgiving. We sobered up and still thought it was a great idea, so here we are.”
The bar will open its doors at 2 p.m. and give everyone in line a wristband and a number. Starting at 4:30 p.m., the first 75 people in line will be guaranteed one pour of Pappy. Once they are gone, they’re gone. The Chevy Chase Inn will, however, have a good variety of other bourbons on hand for people to drink in addition to a raffle featuring Buffalo Trace distillery swag.
The bar has not said what “at cost” is, but does that really matter? It’s going to be cheaper than anywhere else around.