I’ve had the opportunity to review several whiskeys from Barrell Craft Spirits. Most of them have been enjoyable with a few exceptions.
If you’re unfamiliar with Barrell Craft Spirits (or BCS), it is a Non-Distilling Producer (NDP) out of Louisville, Kentucky that sources barrels from various distilleries from around the world, and then blend them into something special. And, BCS knows what it is doing. What it offers isn’t inexpensive (usually retailing about $90 or so), but is also far less than several other blenders that crank up the price well into three figures. It has an entry-level brand called Stellum Spirits.
“We’re progressive in our ideas about blending, but traditionalists when it comes to the identity of bourbon. We never add any coloring, flavoring, or water. Instead, we release all of our limited-edition bourbons totally pure, without chill filtration and at barrel strength to replicate the incredible experience of drinking directly from the cask.” – Barrell Craft Spirits
Today I’m sipping on Bourbon Batch 031. It is a blend of Bourbons from three states: Indiana, Kentucky, and Tennessee. As such, we’re looking at MGP, (likely) Jim Beam, and George Dickel. These straight Bourbons are 6, 7, 10, 15, and 16 years old. There is a bit of 99% corn Bourbon, a smidge of wheated Bourbon, and the rest of traditional recipes. Like everything BCS, it is bottled at barrel strength which, in this case, is 111.2° (55.6% ABV). You can expect to pay about $89.99 for a 750ml package.
Before I #DrinkCurious, I’d like to thank BCS for providing me a sample of Batch 031 in exchange for a no-strings-attached, honest review.
Appearance: Poured neat in my Glencairn glass, Batch 031 was deep amber. It created a thinner rim that generated long, slow legs that crawled back to the pool of liquid sunshine.
Nose: A complex nose of orange peel, apple, date, brown sugar, nutmeg, cinnamon, and oak forced me to keep sniffing the inside of my glass. When I drew the vapor into my mouth, a vanilla-peppermint combination rolled across my tongue.
Palate: The texture was thick, creamy, and full-bodied. On the front of my palate, I tasted berry, plum, orange zest, and rye spice. The middle featured ginger, nutmeg, allspice, and caramel. Then, on the back, I experienced cola, marshmallow frosting, dry oak, and black pepper.
Finish: This was one of those Energizer Bunny finishes. It was sweet with marshmallow frosting and plum transitioned with cola before becoming spicy with dry oak, ginger spice, allspice, dry oak, and black pepper. It left a sizzle on my tongue without hitting my hard palate.
Bottle, Bar, or Bust: Batch 031 had one of the most complex noses I’ve experienced. It took me many minutes to discern everything. The mouthfeel was lovely, which led to a fruity, spicy, sweet palate and finish. I really liked this one, and the price is an easy one to swallow. I am happy to convey my Bottle rating. Cheers!
My Simple, Easy to Understand Rating System
- Bottle = Buy It
- Bar = Try It
- Bust = Leave It
Whiskeyfellow encourages you to enjoy your whiskey as you see fit but begs you do so responsibly.