Thursday, May 28, 2015

Blood Oath Pact No. 1

Blood Oath is the first limited edition whiskey brand from liquor giant Luxco, headquartered out of St. Louis MO, and made famous by bourbon brands like Ezra Brooks and Rebel Yell. Pact No. 1, was just released (Spring 2015) and is a blend of three bourbons, ranging from six to twelve years old. For all my non science readers, Blood Oath's proof matches that of the normal human body temperature. I was grateful to be sent this bottle as Blood Oath bourbons will be released annual and in very limited quantities.

98.6 proof 
Blend consists of the following:
-A wheated bourbon aged six year
-A high rye bourbon aged 7 years
-A high rye bourbon aged 12 years 

Nose: Heavy caramel with vanilla cream lead the way for a fairly sweet aroma. Sweet spice, apricot, and oak are present along with a slight varnish.

Taste: On the tip of the tongue there is a wheat sweetness that is quickly overturned by a deep peppery spice. Cream soda, caramel candies, and honey blend lightly on the mid palate. There are nice herbal and mint notes present.  Finally, the 12 portion of the blend year shows itself with a heavy dose of tobacco.

Finish: Smooth and medium in length. The wheat sweetness and rye spice return along with a touch of oak.  

Conclusion: Blood Oath Pact No. 1 is a very unique bottle; the four grains (corn, wheat, rye, barley) really show themselves in this bourbon. It's a nice pour with a unique complexity- the awesome branding doesn't hurt either- but at an MSRP of $89.99 a bottle, it's not a purchase that I can recommend. That being said, I am looking forward to Pact No. 2, coming in 2016 and consisting of an entirely new bourbon blend.

My Rating: B (Good)

Bourbon Brothers Video: Coming Soon!

Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Woodford Reserve Double Oaked

Woodford Reserve Double Oaked begins its aging process just like the Woodford Reserve Distiller's Select bourbon that we have all come to know and love. However, after the standard 7-8 years, this is then re-barreled in a second, deeply toasted oak barrel. This "double oak" process produces a whiskey with unique and dessert like character.

90.4 proof
Aged in two separate charred oak barrels
No Age Statement 

Nose: Extremely sweet with notes of chocolate, honey, vanilla, and deep oak.
While slightly diminished, I also noticed some coffee bean and cherry soda. It's very nice, and I wish it was a cologne.

Taste: The palate is savory, creamy, and soft. Chocolate pie, sweet corn, nutmeg, maple syrup, and honey. Hints of cherries, spiced apples, almonds, and toasted oak combine for a well balanced and uniquely sweet bourbon. Honestly, it tastes like dessert, and I don't share my dessert.

Finish: Medium in length; fairly dry with lingering notes of marzipan, coffee ice cream and toasted oak.

Conclusion: As I really enjoy Distiller's Select, this Double Oaked bourbon did not disappoint. Try to pour yourself a glass and let it sit under your nose for 5 minutes- it's a daunting task only men with an iron-will can accomplish. The price tag is a bit heavier ($55) than the Distiller's Select, but the over-toasting of the second barrel produces a sweet, savory and intense bourbon full of flavor which is certainly worth a try. 

My Rating:
B+ (Very Good)

 Bourbon Brothers Review: Coming Soon!

Monday, April 20, 2015

Larceny Bourbon

Larceny is a wheated bourbon made by Heaven Hill distillery. The story goes that John F. Fitzgerald, a treasury agent trusted with the keys to the rickhouse, would sneak in at night and drink from the best of the bourbon barrels; some call him a thief, others call him a very intelligent individual...I wanted to share that story because it's of the best or the worst marketing stories for a whiskey that I've ever heard – I can’t quite tell (probably the worst).

92 proof
Wheated mash bill  
No Age Statement

Nose: Detecting a lot of fresh baked wheat bread at the top of the nose. There is some cinnamon swirling around here and this combination is reminiscent of cinnamon toast crunch cereal. Sweet aromas quickly follow- brown sugar, vanilla, some fudge. It's also fairly nutty.

Taste: Sweet spice is the first thing noticed on the palate. Much more on cinnamon than the nose revealed. The wheat bread and nuttiness combine with honey for a unique but well balanced profile.

Finish: Medium in length with sweetness, baking spices, and slight oak. 

Conclusion: Trying new wheated bourbons is always on my to do list. Larceny is a solid whiskey with a flirtatious price tag around $25. It's very drinkable at 92 proof, and if you like sweet and spicy bourbons, definitely give this a try. 

My Rating:
B (Good)

 Bourbon Brothers Review:

Tuesday, April 7, 2015

2014 Old Forester Birthday Bourbon

Old Forester is a brand dating back to the late 1800s with founder George Garvin Brown. Currently produced by Brown-Forman in Louisville, KY., this limited edition bourbon is released annually on GGB's birthday (September 2) to commemorate the brands history and his legacy. I usually hold on to limited releases for special occasions, and as I recently celebrated my 26th birthday, I figured Old Forester Birthday Bourbon was the best bottle to celebrate with.  

12 years old
97 proof

Color: Deep amber

Nose: This is honestly one of my favorite noses. The oak is heavy but in a gentle, non abrasive type of way. Creamy vanilla icing, maple, and cinnamon float out of the glass with subtle hints of banana oil and cooking sugars.

Taste: A very chewy mouth feel for the proof.  Oak centric upfront with sweeter notes appearing on the mid palate. Rich flavors of juicy fruit, yellow cake, maple, vanilla, and
cinnamon combine for an experience that way exceeds my expectations.

Finish: Medium in length. Very warming with spice, yeast, and dry oak.

Conclusion: From start to finish, this is an awesome bourbon! The nose is fantastic, and while the taste doesn’t quite match that brilliance, it is still exceptional. If you like oak forward bourbons, this will be right up your alley. Keep an eye our for future releases of Old Forester Birthday bourbon, hitting stores mid/late Fall.

My Rating:
A (Great)

Bourbon Brothers Review:

Sunday, March 29, 2015

Old Weller Antique

William Larue Weller was one of the early distilling pioneers in Kentucky. While he is well known for replacing rye for wheat in the mash bill, he also believed in the importance of aging his whiskey. To this day, Weller bourbons (made at Buffalo Trace) are aged no less than 7 years. Shoutout to @swansongspirits for the hookup! 

Buffalo Trace wheated mash bill
No Age Statement but we know it's at least 7 years old
107 proof

Color: Light Mahogany

Nose: Waves of cinnamon and sweet spice followed by cherry jam, caramel and vanilla.

This is great bourbon my friends. At 107 proof, there are a lot of thick and full flavors. Vanilla, graham cracker, cinnamon sticks, apple pie, and slightly toasted oak.

Finish: A smooth, warming finish with pepper spice, cinnamon, and pleasant heat. 

Conclusion: Surprise surprise, I love Buffalo Trace products! Old Weller Antique is sweet, spicy, and full bodied- what else can you ask for in a bourbon? It shares some similarities with Pappy Van Winkle bourbons, but OWA can be found for under $30. If you were to ask me if this lives up the to hype, the answer is a definite yes!

My Rating:
A (Great)