Anatomy of the Kentucky 74 Bottle

We’re so, so proud of all the hard work that’s gone into our signature Spiritless Kentucky 74 — and we’re not just talking about the flavors and feels of saying Less is Yes. From the embossed label to the cork in the bottle, we poured our heart and soul into making a beautiful first impression. We thought about what it would look like on the store shelf. What it would feel like in your hand. How it might shine on your bar cart or slide across your kitchen counter. And what we came up with is a bespoke bottle that we think you’ll want to get to know a little better.

The Cork. So here’s the thing about cork: there are lots of different kinds and most of them come from Portugal. You have your natural cork, which can be pretty porous, squishy, irregular and might just splinter when you pull it out of a bottle. Then there’s micro-granulate cork, aka leftover bits of natural cork that are ground up, combined with a polymer and repurposed. No, thanks. Spiritless uses something in between: a high quality blend of corks that form a sturdy and firm stopper that can survive shipping, recapping and a long shelf life.

The Cap. Kentucky 74 is no shrinking violet. She can’t be, what with standing up to whiskey and all. So when it came to the cap, we didn’t want something dainty or wimpy; we wanted a stopper that felt sturdy, solid, maybe even a little beefy. Ours is made of beautiful, debossed oak. It gets hand-stained and cured in Spain before it’s milled, molded and attached to its cork. 

The Bottle. As we’ve already alluded to, everything about our bottle is intentional. Our glass starts in France, where we work with one of the oldest glass manufacturers in the world. Since we knew we’d be shipping Kentucky 74 one bottle at a time for a while, we sourced glass that would be really sturdy (that word, again!) and strong enough to withstand a bit of jostling around. And, of course, the heft and weight are reminiscent of a “real” spirit — because, bourbon.

The Iconography. Visual Language. It may sound like some high-falutin’ branding term, but each little icon on our label was a labor of love. After all, we’re helping to define the non-alcoholic spirits category. Oh, and we were born in Bourbon Country. So you’ll find nods to our spirit heritage — an oak cask, a dapper little horse, a rocks glass — mixed with modern touches like a spin class bike. That combination of familiariarity without being fuddy-duddy is exactly what we were going for. 

The Label. Speaking of labels: we want you to have one experience looking at our bottle at eye level on the aisle… another when the bottle is in your hand… another when you’re admiring it on your bar. That led us to an embossed label on natural paper, an unusual choice for most spirit producers. We love the relief of embossed icons against our fingertips and the luxurious feel of natural paper against our palms.  As for the colors, we waffled between reds, pored over Pantone colors and debated the finer points of, well, white until we landed on the beautifully saturated red, deep pure black and linen you’ll find on our label. 

The Ingredients. What’s in the bottle is just as important as what’s on the bottle. Our ingredients include natural oak, caramel and vanilla flavors, a tiny bit of cane sugar to balance out the tannins that result from the distilling process, and a few natural stabilizers to prevent spoilage. You know what’s not in the bottle? Alcohol, hangovers or guilt.

Anatomy of the Kentucky 74 Bottle