American Whiskey Bottle Prices Snapping Records This Year, Expert Says

by Jonathan Howard

If you were thinking about getting into collecting American whiskey bottles, maybe this year isn’t the year. Prices at auction are breaking records. There is a real, living market for rare bottles. With old, antique bottles and more recent vintages going up for huge numbers, the market is changing. Values depend on the rarity, history, or limited quantity of the bottle.

Bourbon and American whiskey in general attract all kinds of collectors. Both domestic and foreign collectors have an interest. Each year, Whisky Auctioneer sells off rare and exclusive bottles for high prices. Joe Wilson, head of content, said that the prices this year were unreal.

“America’s most historic and important whiskeys would elicit a lot of interest, but the appetite for these bottles far surpassed our expectations,” Wilson said to The Whiskey Wash.

There are so many iconic brands of bourbon and whiskey in America. Four Roses, Van Winkle, Makers Mark, Henry McKenna, and so many more. At this year’s auction, there were so many phenomenal bottles auctioned off. The rarity and history of the bottles at this year’s auction made prices rise.

“The record prices are testament to the current interest in bourbon and American whiskey. We are excited to see how our future plans can help to nurture and grow what is fast becoming one of the hottest segments in the secondary market,” Wilson explained.

The highest-grossing bottle went for $29,482.88. It was a bottle of Van Winkle 1975 Special Reserve 19 Year Old for Corti Brothers. Just an absolutely rare and interesting vintage. There were also Pre-Prohibition-era and Prohibition-era bottles sold at the auction as well. A bottle of Overholt 1908 Rye Whiskey sold for just over $6300. A 1916 bottle of OFC Bottled in Bond.

Maker’s Mark: Making Whiskey Easier

One of the most notable names in the bourbon game is Maker’s Mark. The distillery has been making fine bourbon since 1959. After all, the first tagline for the brand was, “It tastes expensive…and is,” they are attempting to bring whiskey to the masses. With a new program. Due to the pandemic, folks have not been able to get the whiskey they want, among other products. So now, the legendary brand is bringing both common and rare bottles to consumers’ doors.

With what they are calling “The Whiskey Drop” every few months, for a price, Maker’s Mark will send whiskey right to your door. There will be special blends and bottles sent as well as regular Maker’s that consumers know and love. Those who sign up for these drops will get the opportunity to taste blends before the general public. If you are or know a whiskey lover, this is the perfect gift. There are all kinds of other gifts and goodies that consumers will receive as part of the deal as well.