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Limited Edition: Emirates and Woodford Reserve Launch Unique Whiskey Experience

Premium passengers can try the new, exclusive bourbon from Woodford Reserve on selected flights throughout July

by Lauren Smith

June 26, 2023

Photo: Woodford Reserve Emirates Personal Selection. Courtesy of Emirates

During the upcoming month, Emirates will serve a limited edition small batch of bourbon from Woodford Reserve. This unique Whiskey will only be available to customers flying on the airline’s Airbus A380 and will be served in its exclusive Onboard Lounge.

The Dubai-based airline has been pouring Whiskey from the Kentucky premium distillery onboard its planes for 15 years. Woodford Reserve has concocted a bespoke private whiskey blend for the airline and its premium passengers to celebrate the partnership.

The Woodford Reserve Emirates Personal Selection Whiskey has been made from just two barrels, creating a unique flavor profile that can never be replicated. In contrast, a standard batch of Woodford Reserve bourbon consists of around 120 barrels.

The small batch has an “opulent” taste profit, with notes of cherry, chocolate, toffee, and caramel and an aroma of dried fruit, sweet honey, vanilla buttercream, and charred wood. The finish is creamy and smooth, with a long-lasting and satisfying tail. Emirates curated the blend alongside Woodford Reserve Master Distiller Chris Morris.

The exclusive Whiskey will be served throughout July in Emirates’ Onboard Lounge on its A380s, open to First and Business Class passengers during the flight. It will appear behind the bar on select routes to the United States, the United Kingdom, Southeast Asia, Australia, and New Zealand.

Photo: Airbus A380, Onboard Lounge. Courtesy of Emirates

While distilleries have sometimes launched exclusive spirits that can only be purchased in duty-free stores, the upscale in-flight liquor is a brand-new concept—one that speaks to airlines’ investment in luxury and well-heeled passengers’ enthusiasm for gate-kept experiences.

Of course, Emirates is well-known for its lavish investment in onboard beverages, having poured $1 billion into its wine and spirits program since 2006. Its First Class passengers have been treated to Hennessy Paradis Imperial cognac for years. Priced at over $3,000, it’s the most expensive spirit an airline serves.

Photo: First Class Suite. Courtesy of Emirates.

Emirates has been giving First Class passengers free snifters of luxurious Woodford Reserve for 15 years, and five years ago, extended the privilege to travelers in Business Class too. Currently, it hands out 90,000 miniature bottles of Woodford Reserve to passengers each year and cracks open 6,500 75cl bottles of the bourbon in the A380 Onboard Lounge.

Woodford Reserve is a super-premium distillery nestled in a thoroughbred country in Versailles, Kentucky, and known for its heritage and modern methods.