2016's release of George T. Stagg was aged in 142 barrels for 15 years and 4 months - resulting in a loss of 76% of the spirit to evaporation!
The colour is a very deep red. On the nose, this is a killer: dark chocolate, massive oak, dark roast coffee grounds and - wait for it - grilled pepper-crusted steak! Vanilla pods. Deep, rich wood smoke. Fruitier and a little malty with water. Powerful.
On the palate this is a bruiser - the oak pulls on the mouth unrelentingly. Syrupy mouthfeel. Massive alcohol. Melted dark chocolate, nutmeg and very rich umami. Water tames the alcohol burn and adds tannins with some hot spices. Exactly what you expect from a Stagg but a bit too over the top.
The finish is bitter oak, black cherry and burnt campfire smoke. This is fantastic stuff, but a little too big - needs to be a bit more layered. But still, this is a lot of fun to drink! Tasting these three together, the DNA more closely matches the 12 than the 107, but really there's not much of a comparison (especially since there is no wheat in the Stagg). Such a fun night to be tasting three great bourbons!