- DISTILLER: Produced by Barrell Craft Spirits
- MASH BILL: A blend of straight bourbon whiskeys from Indiana, Kentucky, and Tennessee
- AGE: 15 Years
- YEAR: 2018
- PROOF: 105.1 (52.55% ABV)
- MSRP: $220
- BUY ONLINE: Wine-Searcher.com
NOSE: Very Complex | Red Berries | Orange | Cookie Dough | Tobacco | Mint | Black Pepper |Minerals
TASTE: Thick body | Strawberry Jelly | Minerals (Think Flintstone Vitamins)
FINISH: Long | Apricot | Black Pepper | Black Tea | (I didn’t pick out the strawberry taffy on my own, but after reading Barrell’s notes, it keeps leaping out at me.)
SHARE WITH: People you know will appreciate great bourbon.
WORTH THE PRICE: This bourbon checks all the boxes for me. Are there cheaper, better bottles out there at retail? Maybe, but they’d be tough to find and would fetch more than this one on a secondary market. If I find another bottle of this at retail, I will grab it without hesitating.
BOTTLE, BAR OR BUST: Some people are very turned off by the earth/mineral/Flintstone Vitamin note that is the calling card of Dickel distillate, and that note is very present in this bourbon. For this reason, I’d recommend most people try it at a bar first. $220+ can be a lot to drop on a bottle you might despise. However, if you already know it doesn’t bother you, then dive in head first and grab up some bottles of this. I personally love that note, and there are a lot of other nice things going on to enjoy, as well.
OVERALL: When I saw that Fred Minnick rated this Best American Whiskey of 2018, I knew I’d have to check it out. Either I’d be the cool kid who got to say he was terribly wrong, or I’d be the cool kid who snagged a bottle just in time. So I got a bottle and couldn’t wait to open it with some friends. The first thing I noticed was all the fruit on the nose and the prominent Dickel presence. Then the creamy, full mouthfeel. It coated the mouth so nicely. The finish was long and balanced with sweet, spicy, and bitter. I was hooked. Every time I go back to it, I find other flavors. After I read Barrell’s notes, I found more of the flavors they had listed.
- 15-year-old bourbon whiskey
- Distilled and aged in TN, KY and IN
- Crafted and bottled in Kentucky
- 1 proof cask strength bottling
- Mash bill: corn, rye and malted barley
This complex 15-year-old bourbon was blended and bottled at peak maturity so you can experience its true flavor. It is a perfect union of grain and barrel, with an old, oaky nose and a deep, honey- maple palate that reveals the lushness of the grain.
Incredibly fruity, the nose opens with strawberry salt-water taffy, Bing cherry, and raspberry but more exotic fruits lurk in the depths: prickly pear, lychee, blood orange, grapefruit marmalade, damson plum, even tomato. The fruits nearly overpower subtle herbaceous notes of pizzelle, Maraschino liqueur, Cynar, and pipe tobacco. Its sweetness is kept in check by a hint of paraffin and scorched earth.
As fruity as the nose, exhibiting strawberry and rose jam, lychee, Maraschino liqueur, and calvados, balanced by très leches cake, hibiscus, and angelica.
The theme continues on slowly evolving fruit: guava, watermelon, Pink Lady apples; they’re joined by a touch of paraffin from the nose and a spicy signature of candied chili pepper.
WITH A SPLASH OF SPRINGWATER
Those nose grows beguilingly perfumed, notes of apple blossom, hyacinth, applewood smoke and mulled cider released from the overbearing fruitiness, which has developed a more tropical character in the form of pineapple, mango and papaya. The palate becomes fuller and brighter, notes of mango and peach nectar overlay fresh ginger. Almond milk and white chocolate on the finish are given lift by spearmint.