Friday, August 23, 2019

Six Affordable Bourbons: Blind Tasting Comments

The late beer writer Michael Jackson also loved whiskey, and the "Beer Hunter" was often quoted as saying, "Whiskey is the strongest, most powerful version of beer."

Owen Ogletree gathered together five beer judges and one experienced whiskey retailer/taster to sip six affordable bourbons and provide blind comments. Look below for the results. 

"Bourbon, whose name comes from an area known as 'Old Bourbon' in Kentucky, is a whiskey that's distilled from corn. For a whiskey to be considered bourbon, the grain mash must be at least 51 percent corn. On top of that, by law the mixture must be stored in charred oak containers and cannot contain any additives."  -- 

LARCENY (wheated bourbon)
- This bourbon was voted our favorite of the six. Spicy, alcohol nose; orange marmalade; grape hint; rich, citrusy note; good barley character; reminiscent of Scotch; finishes dry and elegant; very drinkable; fig-like with hints of cinnamon and nutmeg; tiny hint of egg-nog character. Wonderful and complex.

- Also one of our favorites. Appealing nose of fruit, spiced fruit and nutmeg. Jam and toast; oranges; dark honey; light peanuts; earthy character; light sweetness upfront with a finish that dries out quickly.

WILD TURKEY 101 (with rye)
- We enjoyed the light rye character. Spice; warm alcohol; solvent hint; nutty; volatile alcohol; peanut shells; apricot; good mouthfeel; pleasant cereal character with hints of corn, oats, rye, etc.

FOUR ROSES (80 proof)
- Extremely smooth and drinkable. Mild nose; dark sugar; alcohol hint; lemon; vanilla, citrus; smooth; seems light in ABV; biscuity malt; interesting cereal-like backbone; light on all counts; easy to drink; a good gateway bourbon.

- Darkest of the bunch; big legs; viscous; good mouthfeel; acetone hint; woody; tannins are big but nice; maple hint; lingering dark syrup finish; sorghum; pecan pie hint; dark grape hint. Could maybe benefit from more barrel aging time?

ASW DISTILLERY FIDDLER (wheated bourbon)
- Interesting, pleasing vanilla and wood character. Smooth; mild; lots of oak; tannins; good body and mouthfeel; light on the palate; smooth; quite drinkable and appealing; shortbread hint; lemon; cane sugar note; reminiscent of a blended Scotch perhaps.

All of these great bourbons are available in the Athens, GA area at