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I have had Basil Hayden's at a local restaurant previously, and didn't post a review. My experience with it last night is what is prompting this one. I do not recall from my earlier tastings that it was this light.
I had it neat, in a brandy snifter, on a lovely evening outdoors. There is no age statement on the bottle.
The color is a nice golden amber, but not as dark as others, like Knob Creek.
The nose is light, and floral. Definite alcohol and menthol, with a backdrop of citrus. i picked up some lemon and orange, and a distinct rye scent. A few minutes later, I took another smell, and got a slight hint of wood and coffee, but not overly so. Overall, I would say the smell is delicate.
I was quite disappointed in the taste. To me, this is another that is not complex. There is very little alcohol burn on the tongue, with flavors of caramel, light wood and a just a bit of char. Slight flavors of the citrus fruits, maybe a bit of pepper, and a touch of licorice and mint.
Maybe it's just me, but I kept sipping to find flavors, where there were none. At best, you get brief passing flavors as you continue to drink this bourbon.
It's light, and would probably be good for someone who's new to the world of whiskey. There is no complexity to this one, and mixing it with anything in a cocktail would be a waste. All the delicate flavoring would be overwhelmed by any mixers.
This one isn't for me, but I can see how it has an appeal.