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Alec Bradley and Starlight Bourbon Collaborate on Whiskey Release Pairing

January 2, 2024 By Matthew Tabacco
Alec Bradley Cigar and Starlight Bourbon Whiskey

Alec Bradley and Starlight Distillery will kick off 2024 on an indulgent note. Today, the brands will release their second “Uncut Series” collaboration, this time pairing Alec Bradley Gatekeeper with Starlight Single Barrel Bourbon Finished in Vino de Naranja Casks. This is the third release of STG’s Uncut Series.

The whiskey brings to life the experience that Starlight Distillery’s Christian Huber, a seventh-generation master distiller, and Alec and Bradley Rubin, legacy cigar makers, had when they developed the pairing. They set out on an exploratory mission, sampling cask-strength bourbon straight from the barrels to discover nuanced differences among the barrels.

The Rubins ultimately selected the barrel they believed captured the perfect, subtle essence of orange, derived from aging the Starlight bourbon in casks that had been previously used to age the Vino de Naranja, a fortified Spanish wine, with orange peels.

Alec Rubin, Alec Bradley’s brand manager of strategic partnerships said, “It would be an understatement to say that a lot of effort went into the selection process for this collaboration. Some might say it bordered on obsession. And while we didn’t set out with a Vino de Naranja-finished bourbon in mind, once we landed there, we were fixated on finding the precise barrel to pair with Gatekeeper. This is a private barrel bottling that will never be replicated. It represents Starlight’s whiskey-making expertise and our fascination with cigar pairing. It’s a real pleasure to partner with Starlight Distillery again, to release this one-of-a-kind bourbon and cigar experience.”

Christian Huber said, “For us, the enjoyment of cigars, like whiskey, has always represented one of life’s true pleasures. Yet for as much as we have enjoyed cigars over the years, our appreciation for fine, handcrafted cigars increases every time we’re in the company of Alec and Bradley Rubin. That’s what this pairing represents to us at Starlight Distillery. It is about deepening the enjoyment of one passion by layering in another finely-crafted indulgence. To us, it doesn’t get much better than that.”

Starlight Single Barrel Bourbon Finished in Vino de Naranja Casks (112.1 proof/56% ABV) is velvety and complex spirit aged five and a half years. Notes of orange zest, warm cinnamon buns and milk chocolate abound, cascading to a warm, rich finish. When met with the nuances of leather, oak and dried dates derived from Ecuadoran Habano wrapper, Nicaraguan binder and Dominican and Nicaraguan fillers that envelope the palate with a Gatekeeper cigar, a memorable sensory experience occurs.

Only 132 pairing packages have been made to include four Alec Bradley Gatekeeper Corona (5.125 x 42) cigars and one 750 mL bottle of Starlight Single Barrel Bourbon Finished in Vino de Naranja Casks. The pairing will sell for $99.99 and debuts today, Tuesday, January 2nd. Interested buyers can purchase via the following URL: Alec Rubin concluded, “We suggest extending your new year celebration with Starlight Single Barrel Bourbon Finished in Vino de Naranja Casks and Alec Bradley Gatekeeper. What better way to set the stage for a great year to come than with a cigar and bourbon pairing that’s one for the ages.”

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