In my experience, there are two types of flavored whiskeys. The first involves attempting to salvage substandard whiskey by burying it in additives. The second is adding or infusing flavors into otherwise decent whiskey to enhance it. Yes, there is a real difference.
“We started this business with absolutely no experience besides drinking the stuff. We just had a vision. This made us work harder to develop a unique, high quality whiskey that was the perfect balance between complexity and drinkability. We spent many sleepless nights running home from our corporate jobs to blend, infuse, and spit out lots of homemade infusions. In 2017, after four years of development and feedback, we finally bottled Misunderstood Ginger Spiced Whiskey. The next question was, would anyone buy it?” - JD Recobs & Chris Buglisi, Co-Founders
Misunderstood Ginger Spiced Whiskey begins with a blend of sourced Bourbon and American whiskey. Most of the combination is Bourbon. The distiller is undisclosed; the only thing we know about the whiskey’s recipe is it possesses a high corn mashbill. The blending process occurred first. The infusing, second.
That’s where two types of ginger – not ginger flavoring, but real ginger root comes into play.
Misunderstood Whiskey carries no age statement nor a straight designation. Likely that’s due to the e150A caramel coloring. The whole shebang was blended and packaged in Bardstown, Kentucky, at 40% ABV (80°). A 750ml bottle costs about $31.00 and can be found in 24 states, with more coming. On a side note, it is non-chill filtered.
JD’s and Chris’s question is valid. Would anyone buy it? I’ll take it a step further. Should anyone buy it? That’s answered via a #DrinkCurious journey. Still, before I get there, I must thank Misunderstood Whiskey for providing me with a sample in exchange for my no-strings-attached, honest review.
Appearance: I poured Misunderstood Whiskey into my Glencairn glass and sipped it neat. All whiskeys go through this same vetting procedure. The color is a deep bronze, but since that’s enhanced by the e150A, we get nothing from it. A medium rim released thick tears that didn’t rush down the side.
Nose: My initial sniff brought no surprises. I smelled ginger. It actually smelled like ginger beer, which is cool because I enjoy a good ginger beer. Vanilla and a kiss of oak were buried beneath. I drew the air into my mouth the ginger beer reference became more realistic.
Palate: The silky texture carried some heft. Plenty of spicy ginger through the front, middle, and back again made me think of ginger beer. Similar to what I found on the nose, there was a gentle wave of vanilla. The back is where flavors of orange marmalade and honey were found.
Finish: The ginger continued its trek with marmalade, honey, caramel, and vanilla in tow. Overall, it was a medium duration.
Bottle, Bar, or Bust: If you’re looking for a whiskey that tastes like whiskey, Misunderstood won’t make you very happy. There are very few whiskeyish qualities to it. But, to expect that is to misunderstand Misunderstood.
I don’t know if hard ginger beer exists, but if I were to design one, it would taste exactly like Misunderstood Whiskey.
Just for fun, Mrs. Whiskeyfellow provided barbecued baby back ribs for dinner. I jotted down all my tasting notes before dinner and reapproached Misunderstood Whiskey with the ribs. ¡Qué bueno!
My guess is Misunderstood Whiskey would make a delicious cocktail base. I didn’t go in that direction because that’s not how I rate whiskeys. In truth, I can’t see myself reaching for Misunderstood if I wanted to sip on a glass of whiskey. But, if I wanted to relax with an incredible “hard” ginger beer, I’d happily grab a Bottle of this and it wouldn’t be a forgotten volume in my whiskey library.
P.S. I blew through three glasses on the first night. 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.