Monday, October 19, 2009
Four Roses Single Barrel
Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey
Although Wikipedia tells us that Four Roses was possibly named after original founder Rufus Mathewson Rose, his brother and two sons, Four Roses' website tells the story of Paul Jones, Jr., founder of Four Roses, whose love interest accepted his invitation to a grand ball and showed up wearing, as promised, a corsage of 4 red roses. I guess if we whisk(e)y nerds weren't spending all our online time surfing porn and writing vitriolic comments on whisky websites and fora we could remedy the spread of misinformation. But where would be the fun in that?
Four Roses produces 10 different recipes of bourbons out of 5 different yeast strains and two mashbills (one 60% corn, one 75% corn) at their Lawrenceburg, Kentucky-based distillery. While most of their whiskies are made with a mix of each between 2 to 10 of these different bourbons, this Single Barrel is, obviously, I suppose, made using only one.
From 1957, Four Roses bourbon was unavailable in its country of origin with Yellow and Black label being more easily found in Kyoto than Kentucky.
Master Distiller Jim Rutledge continues to make great whisky: 5 stars from F. Paul Pacult, Gold at the ISC, and Best Bourbon (no age statement) WWA 2008. So the verdict is in. What of any significance could my opinion possibly add?
Tasted as a part of a lovely morning session with DS.
Big and sweet. Luscious candy fruitiness, Bazooka bubble gum, Watermelon Hubba Bubba, Juicy Fruit. Coconut and gorse, even some baby powder with water.
Dry but chewy with basil, mint, caramel. Sweet and light, floral. Cream soda and maple with time and a pleasant slightly bitter and spicy finish.
Interesting and tasty drop that kept insisting I stick and re-stick my nose in the glass and revel in its big, sweet, voluptuous vapours. My only complaint (or perhaps oversight on my part) is that there is no indication of which mashbill this cask is made. They have this cool tool on their website but the numbers on the label (TN 85 4L) seem to have no relationship to the spirit codes but rather to the cask and warehouse number. Would be cool to know which spirit is which, esp as it is single barrel, no?
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