On Tuesday, Four Roses announced what will be its oldest release to date: the 135th Anniversary Limited Edition Small Batch Bourbon, a blend containing a notable 25-year-old bourbon. Available starting Sept. 15, the launch marks Four Roses’ 16th release in the Anniversary series.

Bottled at 112 proof, this blend is composed of four barrel-aged bourbons. Four Roses utilizes 10 distinct recipes to formulate their spirits, each of which is produced using various combinations of the distillery’s five yeast strains and two mashbills. The 135th Anniversary blend specifically contains the brand’s 35 percent 12-year-old OESV, 40 percent 14-year-old OESK, 20 percent 16-year-old OESV, and 5 percent 25-year-old OBSV.

Each of the acronyms listed after the age statement refer to which of the 10 recipes was used for that specific spirit. The “O” denotes that the spirits were distilled at the Four Roses Distillery while the second letter — either “B” or “E” — represents which of the two mash bills was used. The “B” blend consists of 60 percent corn, 35 percent rye, and 5 percent malted barley, while “E” is made with a blend of 75 percent corn, 20 percent rye, and 5 percent malted barley. “S” will always be the third letter and corresponds with Straight Distillation. The final letter, one of five, indicates which yeast strain was used. According to the brand, “V” provides light fruit notes, “K” slight spice, “O” a rich fruit essence, “Q” floral essences, and “F” herbal notes.

The use of a 25-year old statement in a blend is exceptionally rare in the category. (The brand’s 2019 release contained a 21-year-old bourbon, the now-second oldest in the series.) During a live tasting on Monday, the brand further explained that each of the 186 barrels selected for the 135th Anniversary blend come from the first, second, or third tier of the Four Roses rickhouse in Lawrenceburg, Ky.

“This release celebrates 135 years of meticulously crafted, high quality bourbon, and I’m excited to hear what our devoted consumers have to say about it,” said Four Roses master distiller Brent Elliot in a brand press release. “In crafting this blend, I wanted to create an elegant bourbon worthy of the brand’s heritage. Each of the 12-, 14-, and 16-year-old batches possess individual characteristics that complement each other perfectly. Once the ideal balance of these three batches was achieved, I looked at several other batches of various ages and recipes to add an extra layer of nuance to the blend. Ultimately I selected the 25-year-old OBSV, which melds perfectly with the other batches and adds additional complexity and depth.”

The brand says the blend offers smooth aromas of allspice, vanilla, cinnamon, and clove, with a complementary palate of honey, rye, berries and pear. Approximately 15,060 hand-numbered bottles will be available on Sept. 15 at select retailers for a suggested retail price of $199.99. Four Roses will also be selling a select number of bottles through a public lottery draw, which whiskey collectors can join until Aug. 28.

Curious about our opinion of the release? Check out our extended Four Roses 135th Anniversary Limited Edition Small Batch review, tasted by VinePair contributor David Thomas Tao.