How much does it cost a distillery to produce a bottle of bourbon? Take plain old Jim Beam white label for example. What does the bourbon in that bottle actually cost the distiller to produce? Fifty cents? A dollar?

How much does the bottle; cap, & labels cost? A buck? A buck-fifty?

At the Bourbon Heritage Panel at last years Bourbon Festival Jim Beam's newest Master Distiller, Jerry Dalton, commented that the Federal Excise Tax was (hr thought, but wasn't sure) ten dollars and fifty cents a "proof gallon". A "proof gallon" is a gallon of 100 proof whiskey. That comes out to $2.10 a bottle for the "old standard" one fifth of a gallon bottles.

Your state is likely to have it's own excise tax on liquor. Mine sure does. And then for the final slap in the face they charge you sales tax when you buy it. Triple taxation! Oh! I almost forgot that you had to earn that money in some way yourself and of course had to pay income tax. Make that quadruple taxation! It's no small wonder that they no longer send the tax man around as the nation would suffer an acute tar & feathers shortage!

So what does it cost to "make" a bottle of bourbon ready to market? And while we're at it how much profit does the distillery make?

Linn Spencer

Have Shotglass. Will Travel.