The mighty Anthrax has been celebrating 40 years of thrash excellence this year, a milestone that reached its peak with a July 18 live stream concert event. Now, the band — Scott Ian, Frank Bello, Charlie Benante, Joey Belladonna, and Jon Donias — continues to celebrate with the release of a new high-end spirit, Anthrax XL.
Anthrax teamed up with Hillrock Estate Distillery for Anthrax XL (XL = “40” in Roman numerals), a Solera-aged, single-barrel bourbon whiskey finished for 40 days in a 20-year old Oloroso Sherry cask.
“I sampled eight different whiskeys from Hillrock’s rickhouse when I was there to pick one for our 40th-anniversary bottle,” Ian says. “It’s a difficult task in that they’re all so great, thieved from the barrel and into my glass. Every time I’ve had to choose a whiskey, I wait for the juice to tell me that, ‘it’s the one.’ This barrel spoke up loud and clear. On the nose, there is an explosion of caramel, toffee, and butterscotch with hints of dried cherries and fresh herbs. The palette has a rich texture of bright red fruits, baking spices, and toasted almonds.”
Just one barrel of Anthrax XL has been produced. The end result is 400 hand-numbered bottles with a strength of 115 proof. Each bottle features the band members’ signatures and is encased in a black drawstring velvet gift bag emblazoned with the Anthrax XL logo.
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“I had a great time up at Hillrock,” Bello says. “Everything there is homegrown, and all done by hand. Jeffrey, Cathy, Alex, and everyone who works there are all really nice people who care so much about what they do and how they do it. I’m very, very happy with our ‘Anthrax XL’ whiskey. It’s smooth, has a great aftertaste, and creates a great vibe. Right after my first taste, I wanted more.”
As part of this collaboration, 40 limited-edition bottles were created and packed in a black drawstring velvet gift bag, imprinted with the Anthrax XL logo, then packed in a customized box encased in a SilverFoil card stock wrap-around. Each limited edition item comes with a Golden Ticket, printed and debossed on gold foil-coated-card stock. The Golden Ticket awards the purchaser and a guest admission to an Anthrax headline concert in the purchaser’s area and includes a special in-person Meet & Greet with the band to take place during Anthrax’s 2022 U.S. tour.
For details and purchase options click here.