“It was an on-the-spot, letter-perfect day.” And that’s what made it so weird. Chris Morris, master distiller of Brown-Forman, is talking about June 7, 2002, the born-on-date of this year’s Old Forester Birthday Bourbon, the annual, one-off whiskey bottled to highlight how varying conditions can affect spirit-making from one day to the next. You might think such ideal circumstances were something that he insists in selecting each year’s batch. But they’re not. Morris stresses what an anomaly perfect conditions are in his 13 choices for the limited-edition release. Success for Birthday Bourbon has typically been born from “something out of the ordinary, a day when something happened. That’s where we always seem to turn.”
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Swiss cigar company Patoro is preparing to launch its first line of cigars for the U.S. market. The brand is called Serie P USA Edition and is distributed by CLE Cigar Co. The cigars ship to retailers this week.

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If you’re headed to Cigar Aficionado’s Big Smoke in Las Vegas next month, you might want to stop by the Davidoff of Geneva store at the Mandalay Bay Hotel and Casino for an advanced look at Davidoff’s Year of the Sheep, an elaborately packaged limited-edition cigar for 2015.
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Tobacco giant Swisher International Inc. has agreed to acquire cigar manufacturer Drew Estate Inc., the maker of Liga Privada, ACID and many other cigars. Swisher, the mass-market giant best known for making Swisher Sweets and other machine-made cigars, will run Drew Estate as a wholly owned subsidiary, keeping the existing management team intact.

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Alec Bradley Fine & Rare, the 10-tobacco-leaf cigar from the makers of Prensado, has just begun to ship to cigar retailers. The 2014 incarnation—a figurado measuring 7 inches long with a ring gauge of 54 at its fattest point—is crafted from a mixture of Honduran and Nicaraguan leaves at the Raices Cubanas factory in Honduras.
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