Food & Drink | July 10, 2016 4:00 am

John Wayne Gets His ‘Dream’ Kentucky Bourbon

Son and distilling team responsible for making the late Duke's wish a reality

Duke Spirits' Bourbon
(Bryan Gray Photography)
John Wayne
Actor John Wayne at home at his family home in Newport Beach, California, in 1967 (Francois Gragnon/Paris Match via Getty Images)
Paris Match via Getty Images


Oscar-winning actor John Wayne is best known for his hulking on-screen presence and matter-of-fact delivery in classic Westerns such as The Man Who Shot Liberty Vance and True Grit.

When he wasn’t acting, Wayne was a family man, adventurer, and noted fan of a good, stiff drink—especially bourbon, Scotch, and tequila. (Before imbibing a new liquor, Wayne would proclaim, “It had better be a good one.”) How do we know all this? His son, Ethan, remembers his father talking of a dream to make said spirits, and out of that sprouted Duke Spirits. Inspired by The Duke’s own personal whiskey collection, which has been preserved for over 50 years, Duke Spirits has created a Kentucky Straight Bourbon in the actor’s honor. For more on the company, click here. Buy a bottle here. Watch a short video about Duke Spirits below.