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This was possibly the first bourbon I had that really sold me to it as a quality product worth investigating further - and I've barely scratched the surface to be fair. From what I gather this is a favourite in the US but seems to carry a, perhaps, rather unfortunate association with red necks in vests and general blue collar shenanigans. I'm not gonna lie, this does it for me:
On the nose is the usual bourbon notes of rose water - quite a lot here actually - some charred vanilla, a definite alcohol nip (which I'll come back to), modelling glue and some mild toffee. There's oak here as well and while it's quite up front it is well balanced with the rest. Some spices here as well such as clove and cinnamon.
Taste is sour cherries up front and then develops into creamy vanilla, with more sour cherries, toffee (like a nut glaze caramel) and ends up at the drying spices which play nicely with the sweetness. I'd also say there's a rye note (mint) but my experience with that grain is limited, so it probably stands out quite a bit for me.
Finish is quite long and some of the oak tannins start to dominate the palette. I'm drinking this neat but water is sometimes needed. The water brings out more wood but looses some of the punch, which brings me onto . . .
You can not help but notice the 'burn' here. This is probably 6 - 8 year old stuff at 50.5 % and it shows. That said, it is not unpleasant. Far from it. What makes this bourbon for me is the 'pep' that it offers. It's been a damp, drizzly miserable old British day today and the room I work in is damp. Settling down with a nip of this is really the ticket today and that heat inside after a sip is most welcome!
I seldom overindulge anymore with alcohol but should I ever want to totally kick back I would probably reach for a bottle of this and a few beers. Good to sip, great to drink casually and it also makes a fine Old fashioned (my better half's two penneth!).