Whisky Connosr
Menu
Shop Join

Four Roses Single Barrel - Barrel Strength

Spearmint and Earth

1 1384

@casualtortureReview by @casualtorture

17th Nov 2017

2

  • Nose
    23
  • Taste
    22
  • Finish
    17
  • Balance
    22
  • Overall
    84

Show rating data charts

Distribution of ratings for this: brand user

Four Roses Single Barrel - Barrel Strength Warehouse:MW Barrel: 50-4N Mashbill: OBSV Age: 8yrs 4months

I loved the 50% FRSB so I found a retailer in Nashville that carried the full strength version! Of course, its a single barrel so im not expecting consistency but have high expectations for this guy. Bottle opened about a week and is 95% full.

Nose: Spearmint toothpaste. Dubble-bubble chewing gum. Pine needles. York peppermint patties. Very minty.

Palate: Starts sweet and minty like the nose with spearmint and double-bubble, then moves to a more earthy, tobacco note. Not as much tobacco as my other FRSB but there is an earthy note that I dont really know how to describe other than "earthy." Tasty dirt? I know that doesnt sound appealing but...its nice. A bit of black pepper too and a spicy note to add some balance.

Finish: Vanilla. Then a bit of bad breath or something. Not a pleasant flavor. Earthy but not pleasant as it was earlier. Like a fruit that has been sitting out too long. Not rotten, just very, very ripe. Then some wood that has been sitting out in the rain for months and has started to break down. Old, wet wood.

Overall: Very pleasant, big, full-strength bourbon until about 3 seconds after you swallow. This bottle still has plenty of oxidation to follow but as of now, I prefer my 50% bottle of FRSB to this. Obviously different barrels will always be different and not like batched whiskey, which is all part of the fun of SB whisk(e)y. Never know what you'll get.

Related Four Roses reviews

13 comments

@Robert99
Robert99 commented

@casualtorture Very nice review. Another whisky for which more is not better. Your experience of FR is quite different from mine. For me FR is one of the most floral bourbon you can get. It also seems to me that the wood of your SB is not as good as it is usually. Personally, I would say that wood spice is one of the best features of FR and it doesn't seem to be the case here. I would really like to know how it is swimming, that way you could be able to assert if it is the effect of the higher ABV that doesn't suit FR or if it is simply a lesser batch or , in this case, a lesser barrel.

about one month ago 1Who liked this?

@Victor
Victor commented

Interesting. I'd love to taste from that bottle.

Much as I love spearmint, I don't like it in whiskey. One or two of those Four Roses yeast strains bring out the spearmint. Not for me.

about one month ago 1Who liked this?

@Robert99
Robert99 commented

@Victor It looks to me to be the regular SB but at CS as it is the OBSV mashbill.

about one month ago 1Who liked this?

@Victor
Victor commented

Hmmm, perverse mint presence. I don't usually taste mint in standard 50% ABV Four Roses Single Barrel, merci a Bon Dieu.

about one month ago 0

@casualtorture
casualtorture commented

@Robert99 my SB at 50% was very floral with vanilla and tobacco. This one is not at all. But hey every barrel is different.

about one month ago 0

@casualtorture
casualtorture commented

@Victor I didn't get any mint in my SB 50% version. I was expecting the same floral, honeysuckle and vanilla notes with some tobacco. Just bigger flavors. But that was not the case here as this was very different than my OBSV SB at 50%.

about one month ago 0

@casualtorture
casualtorture commented

@Robert99 and I will add some distilled water next time (tomorrow maybe) and see how it changes and give an update.

about one month ago 0

@Victor
Victor commented

@casualtorture, I think that If I owned that bottle of yours that I might try some vatting experiments with it. Sounds like you might be able to improve upon it. You know what would be an interesting experiment? Vatting some of that bottle of yours with some Four Roses Yellow Label. Stoke up the intensity of the Yellow Label with the barrel strength and mellow out the Single Barrel a bit. 1:1, 2:1, or 1:2 might all be worth trying.

about one month ago 1Who liked this?

@RianC
RianC commented

Interesting review, thanks - bad breath . . . mmm sounds appealing! Seriously, it's amazing the variety of smells and tastes we get and how we each interpret or perceive them differently. I feel like I could go off on an Aldous Huxley style diversion but will restrain myself and save you all the torture!

I doubt I'll be seeing this one any time soon but do have my eye on the SB at 50%.

fwiw I find a minty/eucalyptus note in a lot of bourbons and the Bulleit rye was chock full of it. I believe some may interpret this as dill?! I had a bottle of Kentucky Vintage a while back and found that as the bottle went down a very unpleasant woody/nuttyness came out, to the point that swallowing took a bit of effort. I wonder if this is a similar thing to the bad breath note?

about one month ago 0

@casualtorture
casualtorture commented

@Robert99 So I added some water tonight. About 1CL to 3CL whiskey (a lot of water for me.)

Nose: Much fruitier and sweeter. Red apples and vanilla. Not as tabacco forward or earthy.

Palate: A bit spicier than before. Fair amount of spice actually. Some vanilla towards the end here.

Finish: This improves the finish drastically. Still a little "old wet wood" and overripe fruit but not as bad as before. The finish was the off putting part before and it is still the weakest part but with water it is less bad.

I would bump this up by a point or two with water. Solid 85 or 86 but still not as good as the 50% FRSB bottle I had.

This is the first time I have ever scored a whiskey higher with water than without. milestone.

about one month ago 1Who liked this?

@Robert99
Robert99 commented

@casualtorture Thanks for the follow up. You are a philosoph sir for the way you are taking this experience. You have a lesser bottle of FRSB but still manage to make it a positive experience. Good for you.

To be honest, I am one of the guy who taste the infamous Lambertus and had fun doing it even if it was awfull. I am also a guy for whom a bad bottle is simply offering a challenge to get the right vatting. I would also be very happy if my lesser bottles would reach 85. Anyway, it always a pleasure to see somebody appreciating the journey on which we are.

about one month ago 1Who liked this?

@Robert99
Robert99 commented

@RianC I did have some minty eucalyptus note in some bourbon in the past but never confused that with dill. I have dill on very oxydized bourbon, on bottles that have been opened for 2 years or more or with high rye content bourbon with a sour note and a vegetal note.

As for the Bulleit Rye, as @Victor as mentioned many time in the past, it changes tremendously with time amd for the better. I find that it becomes more and more sweet with time. Hope your bottle will follow the same path.

about one month ago 0

@RianC
RianC commented

@Robert99 - Oh my bottles long gone but I had it open for over a year and it did get much sweeter. A very pleasing introduction to rye.

about one month ago 1Who liked this?

You must be signed-in to comment here

Sign in