The nose says, “Whiskey;” the palate says, “Bourbon;” the finish says, “Rye.” I like whiskeys that take you on a journey from the nose through to the finish. As a blend, Manchester Reserve takes you on less of a journey and more around some sharp turns. The nose almost seems delicate for the proof, but the bourbon notes on the palate, followed by a strong rye finish, lacks the harmony I expect in a blend. If “surprising turns” is your whiskey style, you may like this. I think it’s certainly worth a try.
Every Little Book release is, to my palate, unique and extraordinary. Fans will recognize they’re Beam whiskeys, but no standard Beam whiskeys. Hearing Noe talk about the effort required to make them adds to their complexity, and conversations about them reminds me just how hard mingling whiskey really is—especially when using a brown rice-accented bourbon. It’s that bourbon that Noe said, “that anchors the complexity of the blend but not the majority of the blend.” I agree. The sweet, round and
There isn’t a glut of cask strength ryes out there and Riptide is an interesting addition to the category. You aren’t going to confuse it with Thomas H. Handy or Kentucky Owl. It tastes young, because it is. The intent was to showcase the rye flavor, not overwhelm it with oak. I generally find ryes seem to be drinkable at a younger age than bourbons, so I don’t mind this. It’s tasty and lightly oaked and the higher proof lends body. (Funny how I look for the grain flavor in a rye, but never say, “I love how the corn shines through!” about a bourbon.)
If you’re looking for a rich, complex whiskey to sip from your Glencairn, this is not it. If you approach this as the novelty product it is, you’ll be less disappointed. It’s made for shots and the Dickel website says so: “Best enjoyed as a shot with celery salt on the rim, pickle juice, or an ice chaser.” (I’m not sure what an ice chaser is either.)
Barrel Strength Boulevardier Sour Cocktail RecipeView Post
As with many young releases, the grains are prevalent. The corn is dominant, but the barleys take this bourbon in an interestingly different direction. Even though it’s technically a wheated bourbon, I wouldn’t compare it to standards like Weller or Maker’s Mark. The high barley content makes this drink more like an Irish whiskey.
While I don’t find this to be a bourbon that holds a lot of surprises, it delivers on all that it promises. The sugar on the nose sets you up nicely for the taste, and the sweetness on the finish that reminds me Bazooka bubble gum. “Sweet” isn’t usually a descriptor I attach to bourbons I really enjoy, but OFBB ‘17 balances it with big spice that brings winter holidays to mind.