Barrell Bourbon Batch 027 / $84.99Barrell Bourbon Batch 027 started with 6-year-old fruit forward barrels from Tennessee and 5-year-old spice forward barrels from Indiana. After these were blended together, 13 and 15-year-old barrels with more wood tannin and depth were layered in and a select number of 9-year-old barrels with a higher rye content were blended in for spice and assertiveness. Finally, 5 and 8-year-old wheated bourbon barrels were added to soften the batch, brighten the front palate, and solidify a cohesiveness to an otherwise extremely complex flavor profile.
Flavor NotesMany bourbons just taste like caramel, some older bourbons taste like oak, but this -- this bourbon is a cherry bomb. At times bright and juicy, at others, brooding and oxidized, but while there are many flavors to be found, cherry stands above them all.
Supporting notes that span sweet desserts, woodsy herbs, and rich oils, but their presence is an afterthought to the singular and intense focus of this whisky’s nose, and that focus is squarely on old, comforting cherry. The oak is sweet and nutty, displaying amaretto and sweet, raisonated grapes. Deeper bass notes of sweet potato pie, walnut shells, and freshly ground coffee flesh out the aromatic register. The influence of rye is subtle here, potpourri, earl grey tea, and bouquet garni whisper at the periphery.
The candied texture that falls short of syrupy and a just-gentle tannin suggest minimal oak extraction but significant concentration over long years spent slowly evaporating in a rickhouse. Like the nose, a bright, juicy acidity puts the focus squarely on a note of cherry so monumental that almost nothing else breaks through. A bit more floral than the nose, candied violet and lavender are just able to peek through, along with a steely minerality. Eventually, some oxidized notes evoke an old oloroso sherry, among them hazelnut, molé sauce, and stewed mushroom.
A gentle, yet complex finish that makes one imagine a flavor wheel in thin air. This mysterious yet fruity bourbon leaves the palate with blood orange, rosehip, hibiscus, and sumac.