A rare vintage bottling of Old Fitzgerald bourbon, distilled at the legendary Stitzel-Weller distillery and bottled at 86 proof in 1981 (bottle code: 81), after the distillery’s name had been changed to the Old Fitzgerald Distillery in order to promote its flagship bourbon. Stitzel-Weller was founded by Julian ‘Pappy’ Van Winkle in 1935. The distillery was a combination of the wholesale liquor business W.L. Weller & Sons, where Pappy started his career, and the A. Ph. Stitzel Distillery, from where Weller sourced its whiskey. Old Weller Antique and Old Fitzgerald were among the brands made at Stitzel-Weller. Their wheated recipe, opposed to rye recipes that were more common in that time, was a smash hit. But crisis hit the bourbon market, and Julian Jr. was forced to sell the distillery and all its brands to Norton Simon in 1972, who renamed it the Old Fitzgerald Distillery. Norton Simon moved production to the new Bernheim Distillery in 1992, closing the Old Fitzgerald Distillery, and United Distillers (nowadays known as Diageo) changed the facility’s name back to the Stitzel-Weller Distillery.