This single barrel is a combo of an 8yr 7month Willett bourbon with a 3yr 7 month 1792 bourbon bottled at 127.5 proof. How do we know…just look up the mashbills. They are unique to these distilleries only and they are listed on the label. It also says “distilled in Bardstown” which is technically true of both Willett and 1792. So, how’s the juice? Incredible. Another win for Hirsh. Brown sugar and leather arm chair, green and red fruit, oak and a blast of toffee. On the palate 1792 oak bomb with the gentle baseball glove leather of an old Willett.
20 year Mellow Corn? Sure, why not! 115 proof small batch 20yr old corn whiskey. 80% corn by law with 8% rye and 12% malted barley making up the rest. The nose is wildly perfumed, closest thing I can think of is a vanilla ice cream root beer float with a touch of the sweet earthiness mixed with a big vanilla pop! On the palate the thick fatty corn flavor bounces back and forth between popcorn, and sourdough bread. Sweet, sour, and richly flavored. This is probably a love it or hate it!
The new 100% fermented, distilled, and bottled range from Bardstown called Origin Series includes this 36% 6yr old rye mash bourbon, bottled at 96 proof. Light and fruity on the nose with floral notes, cinnamon, and a touch of licorice. On the palate, amazingly bright fruit and oak spice. It sizzle and pops on the mid-palate. While I LIKED the wheated, this is modern bourbon on a whole different level, such a CLEAN and BRIGHT taste profile with literally NO FLAWS. Big juicy rye spice to finish. Buy as many bottles as this Fall 2016 as you can as it will be the original release of this new whiskey.
Perhaps the most famous “private label” ever created for a retailer. Made for the Mitchell family, basically a Dublin Liquor store, and now one of the most sought after single pot still Irish whiskies in the world. A blend of pot still whiskey aged 7 to 10 years in new fill bourbon casks, refill casks, and sherry casks and bottled by Pernod Ricard and sold around the world in small amounts. Another oily, malty fruit bomb with touches of clove and citrus plus cinnamon apple spice and creamy malt.
Single pot still Irish Whiskey, a style unique and legally bound to Ireland uses at least 30% unmalted barley in its grain bill and is typically triple distilled to achieve a uniquely pleasant grassiness combined with citrus. Add to that ageing in sherry casks and you get Redbreast 12, one of the most elegant and drinkable premium whiskies in the world. Spice, citrus, and fruit dominate the nose. On the palate, red fruit and citrus, then candied lemons, orange creamsicle, light earth and a perfectly spiced finish.
To say that Jameson Irish Whiskey is a great blend, is a bit of an understatement. And although in recent years it has transcended the Irish whiskey category and simultaneously spurred billions of dollars in invest in the country and category itself, at the end of the day it’s about THE WHISKEY. And guess what…it’s fantastic. Portions of single pot still and sherry finishing meld seamlessly with fine light and sweet Irish grain. Soft, fruity, grassy, with a depth, roundness, and “liquid gold” drinkability that’s really not matched among the great world blends. Chivas, Dewars, Johnnie Black, Crown Royal, Seagram’s VO Gold, these are all great, historic, magnificently drinkable whiskies, but if I’m sitting in a strange hotel bar with limited options and 20 minutes to kill…give me a JAMO all day long!
#1. Green Spot Irish Whiskey – this single pot still Irish whiskey is made with up to 30% unmalted barley, aged for 7-10 years in a variety of new and used bourbon barrels with some sherry barrels as well. The blend is powerfully flavorful with malt, fruit, cereal and citrus all pinging off the charts. #2. Bushmill’s 10yr Single Malt represents the “malt” style whiskey which is made extensively in Ireland as well as an offering from the north part of the island. This is the chewiest, maltiest, citrus inflected of the bunch and has always been a sleeper hit in my opinion, tons of juicy grape-like flavors as well. #3. Jameson Irish whiskey is the best selling Irish whiskey by millions of cases, but that doesn’t make if bland or bad. In fact, it’s fully flavored, but with an approachability that has made in inextricably into a shot brand. Oh well, it’s just darn good. Honey rich with a touch of sherry influence and a grainy sweetness that persists.
Top floor, highest proof Old Forester single barrel we’ve ever encountered. There’s not a whiff of heat about this. PURE BOURBON CANDY…nose of liquid caramel and cinnamon, very finely tuned oak spice, with an almost cedar like quality. The palate just melts with rich caramel sauce, butterscotch, and a touch of cocoa. With so many “okay” barrels out there, to come across a juggernaut like this after so many years, it’s amazing!
With new distilleries sometimes bending over backwards to reveal the source and make of every aspect of their products, it’s a weird throwback to encounter a product like Michter’s Sour Mash. It’s not a bourbon. It doesn’t have a published mashbill. It doesn’t say where it’s distilled. It doesn’t have an age statement. As a simple “whiskey” it could be a fair number of different things, but it doesn’t really go into ANY of that. So, ultimately it doesn’t really matter what the background of the whiskey is, you just have to judge it purely on TASTE! On the nose, purest old “dusty” sweet brown sugar nose of any “bourbon” on the market. Some lemon tart thrown in as well. On the palate, the 86 proof is so soft and sweet to drink you’d think you were sipping a bottle of National Distillers OGD. Intensely flavored, buttery soft, with light leather and orange peel as well.
This “blended bourbon” is a combo of MGP 21% rye bourbon, 95% rye, and 14yr old Light Whiskey, bottled at 110 proof. Nose is fresh fruit, cinnamon gum, and light vanilla. Palate is soft and sweet for 110 proof with apricot and juicy vanilla bean emerging. This is a FANTASTIC whiskey which would be really easy to dismiss. The older addition of Light Whiskey bends the flavor in such a rich and interesting way. Smooth and flavorful for days. This is a NOT TO BE MISSED whiskey, and what the future of innovation in this space should look like.