Thursday, May 24, 2018

E.H. Taylor Jr. Warehouse C Tornado Surviving Bourbon

From despair sometimes comes great things.

In spring of 2006 a severe storm and a violent tornado twisted over Buffalo Trace Distillery, damaging two barrel aging warehouses. Warehouse C (which was built by E.H. Taylor Jr. in 1881), had significant damage to its roof and north walls. The aging barrels of whiskey within Warehouse C were exposed to Kentucky’s extreme temperatures for the majority of the summer while the structure underwent repair. Such exposure no doubt created a once in a lifetime bourbon, rich in flavor and character. In 2011, 93 barrels aged in the top two levels of Warehouse C were bottled as Tornado Surviving bourbon, marking the third release of E.H. Taylor Jr whiskey.

In 2013 I acquired this bottle of Tornado Surviving Bourbon and have been holding it for a special occasion. On February 9th, 2018 my wife and I welcomed Conley Elyse Blundon into the world. It’s been a trying year, my wife had a difficult pregnancy. Every OB visit foreshadowed a sense of helplessness and anxiety as fetal measurements were not looking typical, and these stressors were compounded by many emergent hospital stays for fetal monitoring. All we wanted was for our baby girl to be okay, but we were constantly told that things were not. I am grateful that my daughter was born healthy and is thriving. Since her birth it’s been a whirlwind of sleepless delight. I love being a father, and watching my wife transform into an amazing mother has been pure bliss. It's wild how difficult situations can result in amazing outcomes. I’ve found comfort in the similarities of these stories, and Warehouse C Tornado Surviving Bourbon is the perfect bottle to celebrate such an experience. 

100 proof
Price: Unavailable at MSRP ($75 in 2011)
No Age Statement- 9 years/8 months to 11 years/11 months old, bottled together

Nose: Apple pie, vanilla cream, and rich dark fruits (plums, figs). Clove and tobacco. Each note is bright and apparent, yet the whole bouquet seems effortlessly balanced. 

Taste: Complex with a rich, yet delicate profile. Jelly jam, butter, and caramel deliver a bold sweetness. Heavy spice, with cinnamon and rye at the forefront. There is a hefty amount of oak/cedar that brings a thick dryness.

Finish: Baking spices, caramel, and hints of tobacco.

Conclusion:  If you're a habitual reader of my blog, you're well aware of my love affair with Buffalo Trace, and that I haven't tasted an E.H. Taylor whiskey I didn't enjoy. As with any limited bourbon now a days (especially those coming out of Buffalo Trace), you can imagine the soaring demand for Tornado Surviving bourbon on the secondary market. Even with all the hype, Tornado Surviving bourbon far exceeded my expectations. No it's not worth current secondary prices, but it's a rich, complex, spicy, and fruity delight.

Rating: A (Great!)