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Four Roses Single Barrel

If you called this a rye, would it smell as sweet?

3 285

@NozinanReview by @Nozinan

8th Jun 2017


Four Roses Single Barrel
  • Nose
  • Taste
  • Finish
  • Balance
  • Overall

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Distribution of ratings for this: brand user

Tonight I use my new(ish) Kentucky Bourbon Glass (KBG) to taste bourbon for the first time. I searched through my open bourbon bottles for a non-Booker’s (i.e.: something a little less intense) that I haven’t reviewed yet, and came across this one. It will be interesting how this single barrel compares to the one @OdysseusUnbound reviewed (possible but unlikely the same batch as we’re both in Ontario).

This bottle was opened in March 2016, has been opened numerous times (gassed each time), and was just under half full.

This expression is reviewed in my usual manner, covering and allowing it to settle after which I take my nosing and tasting notes. No water in this 50% ABV bourbon.


“Bourbon” signature nose hits first. Sort of burnt caramel, corn, and vanilla. After settling, the bourbon glass reveals some brown sugar and cherry. No, more like cherry “Mr. Freeze”registered pops or pink cream soda. In the snifter the alcohol is more concentrated, and the cherry is more fresh cherry juice. I get some leather. The Glencairn hints at sweet white cream soda and maybe marshmallow or fresh (raw) meringue. 21.5/25


Very flavourful out of the KBG. Sweet arrival, slightly thin mouthfeel then astringent development. I get powerful vanilla and some caramel in the background. A little hot. Richer and fruitier in the snifter and not as ethanol hot. The development remains sweeter. The Glencairn has a sweeter taste but the other flavours are less prominent. 21.5/25


Quite wood-bitter, more so with the KBG than the snifter. 21/25


In general it is not complex. Though most of the nose and flavour are pleasant, there’s a little too much wood bitter. 21/25

Score: 85 /100

This is not bad bourbon, but in a cabinet of favourites I don’t reach for it very often. Of course there is cask variation and I’m told a different bottle that @Paddockjudge sourced for me is outstanding. I look forward to finding out for myself but at the rate I’m drinking this it will be a long time…

Interestingly (or not, I will let you decide), I give this one to the KBG. I think it’s the most balanced of the three glasses. I look forward to seeing how this plays out for some of my barrel proof bourbons.

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OdysseusUnbound commented

Nice review. Our scores are similar. I wonder if we got the same batch...I haven't updated my review with the relevant information yet. I'm thinking it might be a different batch since my nose and palate definitely detected some menthol/herbal notes. Then again, our tastes are different so perhaps what stands out to your palate is different than what I notice. Out of curiosity, what are some of your favourite bourbons?

7 years ago 0

Nozinan commented

Well, since you asked (good question), in no particular order, Booker's (esp. 2015-01), George T Stagg, Old Grand-dad 114 and BIB, Stagg Jr, ECBP. I freely admit I've not tasted as widely as some others have.

7 years ago 1Who liked this?