Wednesday, November 21, 2018

Coppercraft Straight Bourbon Whiskey Review & Tasting Notes


 

Today we share the first post in a three-part series featuring products from Coppercraft Distillery. Each post features tasting notes from three different reviewers - none of whom were in communication with each other while performing the reviews. The result is a series of tasting notes and observations that are unique to each reviewer and helps to illustrate the difference in how even experienced whiskey drinkers interpret and rate a whiskey...


You can read this review in its entirety at Bourbon & Banter. Cheers!

Monday, November 5, 2018

Whiskey Ratings - What Do They All Mean?


Let’s face it, there are a lot of reviewers out there writing for websites, magazines, and books. There are several commonalities:  They’ll tell you a bit about the history or backstory, they’ll talk about mashbills, they’ll describe aromas, tasting notes, and finishes. Some will even mention prices and where you can pick up bottles (we do that at Bourbon & Banter, but we’re cool like that). The crux, however, is the recommendation and rating.


There can be great misunderstanding and confusion as it pertains to ratings. When I write reviews, occasionally folks will comment and ask why I don’t do a rating in their preferred manner or using a more “classical” method. Some want a scale of one to five (along with cute icons like Glencairn glasses, thumbs, etc.).  Others request a scale of one to ten.  And, for some, they want a score of one to 100. Then, there’s the 50 to 100, such as those done by Whisky Advocate...

You can read this article in its entirety over at Bourbon & Banter. Cheers!

Monday, October 22, 2018

Black Feather American Whiskey Review & Tasting Notes


I'm always excited to #DrinkCurious. When I was first approached to review Black Feather, it was something I'd not ever heard of, so I jumped at the chance.

Black Feather is a younger, MGP-sourced Bourbon. It comes in a very nice presentation, using a heavy bottle with “Black Feather” embossed in the glass, a thick, paper label, and a wax top. My bottle is from Batch 1...

You can read this review in its entirety over at Bourbon & Banter. Cheers!

Monday, September 24, 2018

Elijah Craig B518 Bourbon Review & Tasting Notes

 


I'm going to start this off by saying I'm a sucker for Elijah Craig. This doesn't mean that any of the various expressions get a free pass from me, rather, it means when I see a new incarnation, I get excited and will buy a bottle untasted. When reviewing it, I give it the same unbiased opportunity for BottleBar, or Bust as I do with anything else. There have been a couple of unimpressive releases in the barrel-proof versions...


You can read this review in its entirety at Bourbon & Banter. Cheers!

Monday, September 17, 2018

Joseph Magnus Straight Bourbon Review & Tasting Notes

 


We’ve all been there. You have a few friends who pick up a pricey bottle, they tell you what a great whiskey is inside and that you have to get a bottle of your own. You consider what your friends say, then consider other options similarly priced, and you pass on the opportunity - at least for the moment.

Joseph Magnus is an MGP-sourced Bourbon that was triple-finished in Cognac, Oloroso Sherry, and Pedro Ximenez Sherry casks...

You can read the remainder of this review in its entirety at Bourbon & Banter. Cheers!

Monday, September 10, 2018

Litchfield Cask Strength Bourbon Review & Tasting Notes

 


I know the first question many of you have is, “Is this MGP?” The answer is a definitive, “No.”  Litchfield does not source its whiskey. They obtain their corn, rye, and barley from local farmers to create their own mash and distillate.

The appearance was a very deep, dark amber that certainly gave the impression it was much older than three years. It left a very thin rim on the glass and created thick, heavy legs...

You can read the entire review at Bourbon & Banter. Cheers!

Friday, August 31, 2018

#30DaysofBourbon Challenge (2018)

 


Four years ago I started a little something to celebrate Bourbon Heritage Month. You see, I wanted to go to the Kentucky Bourbon Festival. The problem was that life happens, and I couldn't make it work out.

What I wanted to do was start a challenge for myself that would let me feel like I was truly celebrating America's Native Spirit. It couldn't be easy, and it couldn't be something that required little effort. What I did is come up with a 30 Days of Bourbon challenge.

This was something initially just for me. In Year Two, I had a few friends and some of the Bourbon & Banter crew join me. In Year Three it went viral as we put together a calendar and invited all of our readers to join us. What it boiled down to was folks taking part put up over 1800 tweets and 3800 Instagram posts that reached more than 8.5 million people...

You can read the remainder of this post over at Bourbon & Banter. Cheers!

Friday, August 10, 2018

Aged & Ore Duo Glass Review

 



A bit over two years ago, when I was brand new to Bourbon & Banter, I wrote an article called Glassware 101: Choose the Best Glass to Enjoy Your Bourbon. The purpose was to demonstrate just how important glassware is in the entire whiskey experience. I compared the differences between a shot glass, a rocks glass, a white wine glass, a Glencairn glass, and a NEAT glass. In that experiment, the Glencairn came out the clear winner...

You can read the remainder of this review at Bourbon & Banter. Cheers!

Thursday, May 31, 2018

Talisker Storm Single Malt Scotch Review & Tasting Notes

 


Talisker provides a great lineup and Storm is certainly no exception. I was loving Storm when it was almost twice the price, and last year I was pleasantly surprised to see the price drop. There are still retailers that will charge the original price, but you should search around because I see Storm in store after store anywhere between the $38 to $48 range, even while traveling outside of my home distribution area...

You can read this review in its entirety over at Bourbon & Banter. Cheers!

Tuesday, May 8, 2018

Islay Storm Single Malt Scotch Review & Tasting Notes

 


If you’ve been reading my reviews for awhile, you’ll know that my prior experience with Trader Joe’s Kentucky Bourbon Straight Whiskey left me with a bad taste in my mouth – a really bad taste. It was a taste so bad that it had me skittish to try any other Trader Joe’s exclusives. And, yet, here I am, one year later, embracing the #DrinkCurious lifestyle, ready to risk my palate for the whisky-loving community with Islay Storm Single Malt Scotch Whisky.


You can read this review in its entirety over at Bourbon & Banter. Cheers!


Friday, May 4, 2018

Wollersheim Round Top Rye Review & Tasting Notes

 


There’s a plethora of two-year-old Ryes hitting the market, with some commanding amazingly high price tags. As this market gets more crowded, distillers must distinguish themselves from the competition.

Being a local, I was excited when Wollersheim, who has run a successful winery for several years, opened its distillery and announced it would create whiskeys. I’ve been curiously waiting ever since for something to be released, with my fingers crossed that they’d distill and age something of at least decent quality, as they’ve done a great job creating wines...

You can read the remainder of the review in its entirety at Bourbon & Banter. Cheers!

Thursday, April 12, 2018

Blood Oath Pact IV Review & Tasting Notes

 



I’ve come into this review completely blind. I’ve not had any of the previous Pacts, so I had no preconceived notions. The appearance in the glass is a deep, rich amber. Swirling it around creates a very thin rim, leading to medium legs that drop quickly into the pool...

You can read the review in its entirety at Bourbon & Banter. Cheers!

Monday, April 9, 2018

Remember When Nobody was Going to Drink Elijah Craig Again?

 


Do you ever feel worn out? Run down? Past your prime? Have you ever longed for your younger days? Does getting older suck, or is it a great experience?

Taking a quick trip back in time, specifically January 2016, the big news in Bourbon was that Heaven Hill dropped the age statement on Elijah Craig Small Batch. The announcement stated they changing it from a 12-year to a No Age Statement (NAS) blend of barrels that aged anywhere from eight to a dozen years.

The reaction on social media and in whiskey groups was immediate and, to say the least, vitriolic. To be fair, a portion of it was anger over the feeling of being misled. Folks were told since 2014 that the age statement would not be dropped, and then, the rumor turned into reality. The mudslinging was lobbed at everyone, but Bernie Lubbers was the biggest target by far...

You can read the rest of this article over at Bourbon & Banter. Cheers!

Thursday, March 15, 2018

Heaven Hill Bottled in Bond Bourbon Review & Tasting Notes

 


Heaven Hill Bottled in Bond has a very limited distribution. At times you can get it outside of Kentucky, but mostly this is a Kentucky-only gem. It also is, surprisingly, not listed at all on Heaven Hill’s website, leaving you to wonder if they’re trying to keep one of the worst-kept secrets in Bourbon locked away.

Bottled in Bond is my favorite category of whiskey. Heaven Hill Bottled in Bond is one of the best representatives of that category. #RespectTheBottomShelf...

You can read this review in its entirety over at Bourbon & Banter. Cheers!