‘England’s Own Kentucky Bourbon’ Never Say Die Launches in the U.S.

Following a successful launch in the U.K., Never Say Die Bourbon is returning home to make its highly anticipated U.S. debut after re-importing several thousand cases of their bottled whiskey. It has truly blazed a trail as the first Kentucky Bourbon to be both ocean-aged on a six-week trip across the Atlantic, and then further matured in barrels in England where it is bottled.

Never Say Die Small Batch Bourbon (RRP $69.95, 95 proof) is the true definition of small-batch with just 2,750 bottles per run. It is an approachable and balanced blend of Never Say Die’s six year old barrels, delivering mellowed spice and citrus that melt into vanilla, leather, and caramel. 

The independent bourbon brand has secured an exclusive nationwide online listing with craft spirits retailer Seelbach’s, as well as launching distribution for the on and off-trade in Kentucky through distributor, Heidelberg. In early 2024, distribution will be extended into California, Nevada and Arizona, with plans to roll out across many other US states by the end of next year. 

Since launching in the U.K. in September 2022, Never Say Die has won numerous awards and accolades for its “wholly unique flavor profile.” This is a result of its exposure to three contrasting climates during its transatlantic aging process, offering a bourbon enriched by the best of each locale. From the rapid aging of Kentucky to the slow refinement in England, combined with the ocean’s wild influence, which accelerates the interaction between whiskey and wood, the result is a pronounced flavor profile that is beyond its years. 

In a rare move in the bourbon industry, Never Say Die, a Kentucky-distilled bourbon brand, launched in the U.K. before the U.S., but despite its English finishing point, it is still very much a Kentucky bourbon—made with a pioneering locally sourced “sweet” mash bill of 75% corn, 21% rye, and 4% malted barley, and aged around five years in a Kentucky rickhouse before being shipped to age another year in England. No bourbon rules have been broken… just flexed a little bit. 

The aging process follows in the ‘hoofsteps’ of the legendary namesake Kentucky-born racehorse that was revived at birth by lucky shot of whiskey and then went on to cross the Atlantic to England to win the Epsom Derby and went onto change the course of thoroughbred racing, and ultimately rock’n’roll, forever.

“When we set out to create Never Say Die, we always knew we wanted to be experimental with the aging process and challenge the traditional Bourbon-making process” said co-founder Brian Luftman. “The contrasting climatic conditions of this journey combined with the increased agitation of the liquid as it makes its Atlantic voyage result in a distinctive and pronounced flavor profile that really is beyond its years. 

“Few bourbon brands launch outside the U.S. first, but in tribute to Never Say Die’s story, we were compelled to first release the product in England, and we have been overwhelmed by the positive response in the U.K. Never Say Die embodies the spirit of adventure, and we are excited for American whiskey fans to discover this first-of-its-kind spirit.”

Every sip tells a story.  Never Say Die is inspired by the legendary racehorse of the same name who was born on co-founder Pat Madden’s family farm in Kentucky. Never Say Die was revived as a sickly newborn foal by a lucky shot of whiskey; just three years later, in 1954, he went on to become the first American-born horse to win the Derby at Epsom in 70 years, in front of a 250,000-strong crowd that included Queen Elizabeth II and Winston Churchill. 

At the same time, on a daring leap of faith, a woman in Liverpool named Mona Best fell in love with the story of Never Say Die and pawned all of her jewelry to literally “bet it all” at odds of 33-1 on the victorious Epsom Derby Race. With her new fortune, she founded a new music venue, the Casbah Coffee Club, and took another risk, this time on a then-unknown band called The Quarrymen (now famously known as The Beatles) offering them their very first gigs, shaping rock and roll history forever.

“Kentucky is the epitome of both Bourbon and horse racing, so we are really excited to be marrying the two and showcasing to the rest of the world the incredible things that Kentucky has to offer” says co-founder Pat Madden. “Never Say Die is our interpretation of the American dream and our chance to honor the memory of our namesake racehorse; celebrating his fascinating legacy that saw him not only overcome adversity on my family farm in Kentucky but then go on to win the Epsom Derby in front of Queen Elizabeth II and help shape rock and roll history as we know it.” 

“We are incredibly proud of what we have achieved, creating a world-class Bourbon that is rooted in Kentucky provenance but with an undeniably English character.”

Never Say Die Small Batch Bourbon is currently setting up nationwide distribution channels, but is initially available online at Seelbachs.com, which elected to include Never Say Die Small Batch in its curated portfolio of ultra-premium whiskeys that can be shipped direct-to-consumer in many US states.   For more information visit https://neversaydiebourbon.com/ or @neversaydiebourbon

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