Peerless Kentucky Straight Bourbon
Bourbon — Kentucky, USATastedA generous sample from dthom as part of the "whiskey transfer program". Very excited to get in to this as I tried it at Whiskeyfest SF but it was probably my 25th sample and I don't recall a whole lot other than that I enjoyed it. Nose: Butterscotch up front with dark wood notes, toasted pine nuts, a hint of spearmint, vanilla, and a musty note like old library (I like books). Flavor: Sweet vanilla and dark sugars with some toasted coconut and dried dates. Fairly strong herbal rye notes but not overpowering and playing very nicely with the sweeter notes. A fairly thick mouthfeel. Finish: Medium long with rye spice and more herbal notes transitioning in to a lightly drying toasted oaky finish with some clove, cinnamon, and cardamom and then a cedar note to finish. I like this and it's super complex but I didn't love it as much as I did during the fest. Admittedly the flavors then were playing with a lot of other samples I'd had as well as my somewhat inebriated state at that point. At $50-$60 this is a solid deal. More I'd probably pass.
Little Book Chapter 03: The Road Home
Blended American Whiskey — Kentucky , USATastedA generous sample from dthom as part of the "Whiskey transfer program". Dying to try this. I LOVED Volume 1 and am a big fan of the other Jim Beam lines so this is very exciting. Nose: Sweet dark sugars up front, orange peel, cedar, toasted almond, toasted coconut. Smells like everything I love about volume 1 with none of the things I don't. Flavor: Much milder than I thought at first. Dark caramelized sugars, toasted almond and coconut, creamy mouthfeel, dark toasted wood, honey, and more orange peel. Finish: Spicy and sweet, a lot like honey both mouthfeel and flavor, lingers for a long time with nutty woody notes. Wow is this delicious. Everything I like about the small batch Beam lines but turned up to 11 with the higher proof and extra aging. Not an everyday drinker as, much like the Booker's items, you really have to be in the right mood for something this strong and powerful but wow.
Bourbon — Kentucky, USATastedA sample from dthom as part of the "whiskey transfer program". Very excited to try this. Nose: Very nutty with deep wood notes. Boiled peanuts, dark caramelized sugars, vanilla, and an odd yeasty note that almost comes across like a cross between white bread and hand lotion. It's not off putting but a little weird. Background orange peel. Flavor: Super nutty but tending more towards toasted pecan, more dark sugars, vanilla, leather, tobacco, and pencil shavings. Finish: Medium long with quite a bit of barrel bitter and dark wood notes which fades in to a sweeter note with cedar and lots of clove and nutmeg. Overall this is super interesting and a little more easy to drink than Booker's. I like the Booker's stuff but you kind of have to brace yourself for it and this is quite a bit more drinkable. Highly recommend.
Old Pepper Straight Rye Whiskey
Rye — USATastedA barrel pick by my favorite local store, Bottle Barn. 3 Year cask strength (107 proof) MGP. Can't go wrong with anything Jason from Bottle Barn selects. If you're lucky enough to get one of his Four Roses picks look out! I'd never heard of Old Pepper Rye. No surprise seeing as I had to submit for it to be added to Distiller. I've seen the 10 year bourbon going for WAY too much at my local place but for $40 for a barrel pick rye why not? Nose: Very grassy spicy notes with vanilla, lemon peel, strong ethanol, and some of that "too young" piney whiskey nose. Flavor: Still a little bit of young pine but sweet and spicy with more herbal grassy notes. A little bit alcohol forward but big on the sweet heat. Finish: Barrel char, black pepper, and then more sweet herbal notes. Not super hot. It's a little young with some of those pine notes that indicate it needed more time in barrel but overall it's solid for the price. A nice sweet and spicy rye with some herbal notes that make it complex and interesting. I think in a year or two more in barrel this would be dynamite instead of just ok.40.0 USD per Bottle
Glenmorangie Lasanta Sherry Cask Finish 12 Year
Single Malt — Highlands, ScotlandTastedNose: Light sugars, vanilla, orange peel, dark dried fruits like dates, sherry funk, and grapey wine notes mixed with brandy. Very pleasant. Flavor: Sweet wine notes play with more dried dates and cherries. Citrus peel abound. Finish: Quite a bit of sweet barrel char, light cloves and tobacco almost like a clove cigarette, finishes sweeter than the other varieties. This one is nice. I approve of the sherry finish and not too funky which I sometimes find off putting.
Glenmorangie Nectar D'or 12 Year
Single Malt — Highlands, ScotlandTastedNose: Sweet sugar notes, vanilla, peach, musty funky notes that come from that wine finish, a little bit of grapey background funk as well, and a hint of orange peel. Flavor: Very thick and buttery but far too sweet for my liking. Nondescript sweet wine notes overpower any other flavors I'm trying to get. Finish: Shorter than the other varieties with light barrel char and heavy grapey sweet wine notes. Finishes sweet transitioning to a little bit of a drying barrel note and then gone. Kind of disappointing. Too much sweet wine flavor that masks everything else. Not a fan. This is my first sauternes finished whiskey and I'm thinking I'll avoid in the future.
Glenmorangie Quinta Ruban 12 Year
Single Malt — Highlands, ScotlandTastedI don't like this nearly as much as the original 10 year. Some very weird notes on the nose have me wondering if this sample bottle is bad. Nose: Light sugars, vanilla, mango, apricot, and...a hint of wet dog. Why? Flavor: Tastes much nicer than it smells. Some darker caramelized sugars, creamy mouthfeel, toasted almonds. Finish: Medium length with some sweet barrel char, baking spices like clove and cinnamon, and a bit of black pepper spice. Very weird. I like the flavor and finish but the nose has a very off putting wet dog smell. Bad sample bottle?
Glenmorangie The Original 10 Year
Single Malt — Highlands, ScotlandTastedNose: Vanilla, light sugars, some musty wood notes, peaches, apricots, tropical fruit like mango, sweet yeasty background notes with a touch of a grassy herbal hint. Flavor: Creamy mouthfeel with more tropical fruits, vanilla, and crème brulee. A background hint of toasted macadamia nuts. Finish: Medium length, sweet barrel char, spices like clove and cinnamon, a little drying as well. I like this. A lot more than I thought I would as I'm a pretty picky Scotch guy. Super nice especially for the price point this is a huge value. Not particularly interesting or complex but super pleasant. Going back after trying the four varieties in the sampler pack: I actually like the original 10 year best. Interesting....
Whiskey Del Bac Dorado Mesquite Smoked Single Malt
American Single Malt — Arizona, USATastedA sample as part of the "whiskey transfer program" from dthom. I'm leery here as I don't like peaty whiskey (sorry peat heads!) and this was sold to me as "smokey without the peat". I always taste peat as burned plastic so I can't get past it. Nose: Very smokey and sweet. Like BBQ that is cooking in someone's backyard. Some wood and dark sugars. Flavor: Dark sugars and sweet BBQ rub. It tastes like the rub I use on my ribs. The smoke is so overpowering I can't get anything else. Finish: No clue. My palate was so overwhelmed with Mesquite smoke flavors that I couldn't tell anything else. Not balanced at all. Sorry guys...I hate this. This whiskey isn't a touch of smoke but all smoke. Any good flavor that I thought I was catching was quickly overwhelmed by Mesquite.
Woodford Reserve Double Oaked
Bourbon — Kentucky, USATastedA sample from dthom as part of the "Whiskey Transfer Program". Excited to try this. Nose: Dark almost burnt sugars, toasted wood, yeasty bread notes, vanilla, and clove. Flavor: More dark sugars but I'm hit right away with super bitter burnt sugar wood notes that are a little off putting and shove all of the rest of the flavors aside. Finish: More dark bitter wood with a little spice, kind of a short finish. I wanted to like this more. Maybe it's a weird barrel? So much bitter burned barrel that I couldn't get much else out of this. It's not bad but just...weird.