Review of Lost Lantern's 2024 Summer Bourbon Collection


Lost Lantern is an American independent bottler founded in 2018 by Nora Ganley-Roper of Astor Wine & Spirits and Adam Polonski of Whisky Advocate; the duo is committed to releasing whiskeys from distilleries they've personally visited. Nora handles production and operations, and Adam handles marketing, sales, and sourcing. Currently, Lost Lantern's whiskeys can be purchased from or


One thing that I'm passionate about is transparency. I respect that some things have to be held close to the vest. However, that gets exciting when distilleries lay most or all of their cards on the table. The fact that Lost Lantern is also big on transparency is much appreciated.


Lost Lantern’s 2024 Summer Collection is slated for release on July 11th. Indiana, New York, Mississippi, West Virginia, and Wisconsin are all represented. All are single casks except for two. One is a blend from Indiana, New York, Mississippi, West Virginia, and Wisconsin distilleries. The other is from a ghost distillery.


We’ll explore each whiskey individually. Each is packaged at cask strength, non-chill filtered, and naturally colored. Each was sipped neat from a fresh Glencairn glass.


I want to take a moment and thank Lost Lantern for providing me with samples of each in exchange for my no-strings-attached, honest reviews.


Finally, I am a 100% advocate for drinking responsibly. There is a lot of whiskey to drink here, and the tastings didn’t occur in a single sitting. Aside from my desire to avoid getting hammered, there is a thing called palate fatigue, which is very real. My duty to you is to provide accurate tasting notes, but I can’t do that after three consecutive pours.


Now, let’s #DrinkCurious.




Lost Lantern Far-Flung Bourbon II


  • Distilleries: Starlight Distillery (IN), Kings County Distillery (NY), Rich Grain Distilling Co. (MS), Smooth Ambler (WV), and Wollersheim Distillery (WI)
  • Age: 5 years
  • Mashbill: undisclosed
  • Alcohol: 63.3% (126.68°)
  • No. of Bottles: 697
  • Price: $100.00


Appearance: This whiskey was the color of rust. A medium rim released syrupy tears.


Nose: I smelled caramel, brown sugar, corn, nutmeg, cinnamon, milk chocolate, orange zest, and cherries. Drawing the air through my lips suggested oak.


Palate: This blend’s mouthfeel was medium-bodied and silky. The very first thing I tasted was barrel char. It was joined by cinnamon and nutmeg. Leather, tobacco, and brown sugar were at the middle. The back consisted of dark chocolate, clove, and cherries.


Finish: Dark chocolate, clove, leather, tobacco, cherries, and barrel char stuck around for 1:16, pushing this into the medium-long category. The leather hung on the longest.  


Bottle, Bar, or Bust: I enjoyed what I was sipping. Far Flung Bourbon II is a complex blend, a testament to the terroirs involved. It drank slightly below its stated proof. There are several blenders and independent bottlers who would price something similar accordingly. I believe it is worth it; it takes my Bottle rating.





Lost Lantern Mississippi Memory Straight Bourbon


  • Distillery: Rich Grain Distilling Co.
  • Age: 5 years
  • Mashbill: Blend of traditional (66% corn, 17% rye, 17% malted barley) and wheated (66% corn, 17% wheat, 17% malted barley)
  • Alcohol: 70% ABV (140°)
  • No. of Bottles: 500
  • Price: $90.00


Rich Grain Distillery Co. was founded by David Rich in 2016 and released the state’s first legal Bourbon since Prohibition. The distillery shuttered in 2020, and this is Lost Lantern’s first release from a ghost distillery.


Appearance: This Bourbon was a deep, dark, burnt umber color. A massive rim formed while shedding thick, wide tears.


Nose: At 140°, it should come as no surprise that this whiskey required plenty of time to breathe. Each time I approached it, I got a faceful of ethanol. I then let it be for about ten minutes. The aroma included corn, oak, cocoa, and caramel. I found honey graham crackers when I brought the air into my mouth.


Palate: Mississippi Memory had a thin, oily texture. It warmed my mouth while exposing the front of my palate to nutmeg and chocolate. The middle tasted of thick molasses. The back offered caramel and oak spices.


Finish: Flavors of oak spice, dark chocolate, and molasses remained. Overall, the duration was very long, clocking in at 2:03.


Bottle, Bar, or Bust: Sometimes, hazmat whiskeys are flavor bombs, while others simply bomb on flavors. Mississippi Memory just isn’t memorable. It provides only a few flavors; most reside in the finish.


I tried it again, this time with two drops of water. The aroma became heavy on chocolate and molasses. The mouthfeel thickened; however, it still lacked depth and flavor.


Unfortunately, this Bourbon doesn’t pass muster. It takes a Bust.




Corbin Cash California Straight Bourbon Single Cask



  • Distillery: Corbin Cash
  • Age: 7 years
  • Mashbill: 75% locally-grown yellow corn, 15% rye, and 10% malted barley
  • Alcohol: 73.1% ABV (146.2°)
  • No. of Bottles: 299
  • Price: $130.00


Corbin Cash is a distillery I was first introduced to last year, and I found it impressive. Its background is included in my review of its 1917 Merced Rye. Lost Lantern’s release is aged in #5 charred oak from Seguin Moreau Napa Cooperage.


Appearance: This Bourbon was so dark it had no translucency at all. There were reds, browns, and even a bit of black. A medium rim formed, and there were widely spaced, thick tears.


Nose: I didn’t even bother smelling this until it sat in my glass for a good ten minutes. What I smelled included cherries, plums, strawberries, blueberries, and caramel. No oak, no spices. When I drew the air into my mouth, I discovered more blueberries.


Palate: The texture was light and almost airy. I rechecked the label; it still said 146.7°. Milk chocolate-covered blueberries rolled across the front of my palate. Next came cherry cola and roasted almonds. The back featured cinnamon and oak spices, along with caramel.


Finish: The caramel and cherry cola continued, as did the blueberries and chocolate. Oak spice was the last to fall off. The duration was 2:14, making it very long.


Bottle, Bar, or Bust: I can’t swear by it, but this may be the highest-proof Bourbon I’ve tried. It drank nowhere near its stated proof; I’d guess about 30 points less were I blindfolded! It was also stunning. It was mesmerizing. It was delightful. Lost Lantern’s Corbin Cash Single Cask may be one of the best hazmat whiskeys I’ve tried. Yeah, this is an easy-as-pie Bottle rating.





Woodinville Washington Straight Bourbon Single Cask


  • Distillery: Woodinville Whiskey Distilling Co.
  • Age: 6 years
  • Mashbill: 72% locally-grown corn, 22% locally-grown rye, 6% malted barley
  • Alcohol: 58.45% ABV (116.9°)
  • No. of Bottles: 200
  • Price: $100.00


Woodinville Whiskey and I became acquaintances in 2019 with its standard Bourbon. Woodinville Rye took the Whiskeyfellow 2020 Best American Rye award. The distillery’s background can be found in my review. Lost Lantern’s release is aged in #5 charred oak from ISC.


Appearance: The golden amber liquid created a thin rim with tiny tears that raced back to the pool.


Nose: Cherries and plums exploded from the glass. That’s typical of Woodinville’s Bourbons. I also smelled caramel and brown sugar. I found more brown sugar when I took the vapor into my mouth.


Palate: The creamy mouthfeel highlighted the cherry influence. It was a smidge medicinal, like cough syrup. Brown sugar and corn accompanied it. At mid-palate, I tasted orange zest, marzipan, and caramel. The back offered toasted oak, vanilla, and caramel.


Finish: Man, that cherry bomb continued through the very end! The finish included orange zest, almonds, and caramel. It ran 1:46, easily qualifying for a long finish.


Bottle, Bar, or Bust: This Bourbon had no heat whatsoever despite the proof. It went down easy, almost too easy, tossing it into that dangerous category. I would not want to drink this and then have to go somewhere; it is definitely a porch sipper. It is well-balanced and commands your attention. I’m happy to have this in my whiskey library and find it deserves my Bottle rating.




Union Horse Kansas Straight Bourbon Single Cask



  • Distillery: Union Horse Distilling
  • Age: 5 years
  • Mashbill: 80% corn, 20% rye
  • Alcohol: 59.9% ABV (119.9°)
  • No. of Bottles: 200
  • Price: $90.00


Union Horse Distilling is another distillery I first encountered in 2019. It is located in Lenaxa, Kansas, and was founded in 2010, making it the first legal post-Prohibition distillery in the state. Lost Lantern’s release is aged in #3 charred oak from ISC.


Appearance: This Bourbon presented as an orange amber. A bold rim produced thick, wavy tears.


Nose: The aroma included notes of maple syrup, caramel, cornbread, and orange zest. Inhaling the vapor into my mouth brought a blast of milk chocolate.  


Palate: A warming sensation hit the tip of my tongue. The texture was medium-bodied. The front of my palate found cocoa powder, cornbread, and raspberries. Next came nutmeg and caramel. The back consisted of oak, tobacco, and orange peel.


Finish: At only 36 seconds, this Bourbon’s finish was fairly short. Orange peel, chocolate, cornbread, and tobacco remained.


Bottle, Bar, or Bust: Union Horse’s Bourbon came across as mild in its proof and flavor. The nosing was lovely. I’d have loved to experience more intense sensations. In my opinion, this should be tried at a Bar first.





High Wire South Carolina Straight Bourbon Single Cask


  • Distillery: High Wire Distilling
  • Age: 3 years
  • Mashbill: 100% Jimmy Red Corn
  • Alcohol: 58.7% ABV (117.4°)
  • No. of Bottles: 200
  • Price: $120.00


I’m not sure what’s so magical about 2019, but that’s when I first encountered High Wire Distilling. You can read its background from my Jimmy Red Revival review. Lost Lantern’s release is aged in #3 charred, heavily-toasted oak from Charlois Cooperage.


Appearance: High Wire’s Bourbon was the color of rust. A thin rim discharged a curtain of tears that crashed back into the pool.


Nose: I smelled walnuts, almonds, caramel, and orange peel. Inside my mouth, the aroma became a vanilla bomb.


Palate: The soft, airy texture coated the entirety of my mouth. The front of my palate experienced butterscotch, vanilla, and orange zest, while the middle tasted of cornbread, honey, and leather. The back consisted of oak spice, cinnamon, and tobacco.


Finish: Flavors of butterscotch, tobacco, oak, and cinnamon spice remained for a 1:51 finish, easily described as long.


Bottle, Bar, or Bust: This was one of those Bourbons I approached cautiously because, in 2019, I didn’t relish what I tasted. The good news is that I enjoyed Lost Lantern’s release. My concern is its price; at $120.00, I think this one is a tough sell. I don’t believe the High Wire Single Cask is there, and, as such, it earns my Bar rating.




Leiper’s Fork Tennesse Whiskey Single Cask


  • Distillery: Leiper’s Fork Distillery
  • Age: 5 years
  • Mashbill: 70% corn, 15% rye, 15% toasted malted barley
  • Alcohol: 57.9% ABV (115.8°)
  • No. of Bottles: 123
  • Price: $100.00


Founded in 2016 by Lee and Lynlee Kennedy, Leiper’s Fork has been on my wish list for several years. Lee built his first still in his mother’s basement when he was only a teenager. Lost Lantern’s release is aged in #4 charred, medium-toasted oak from Kelvin Cooperage.


A Tennessee Whiskey should, by its very nature, possess a mellow quality due to the Lincoln County Process (LCP), which utilizes a deep pit of charcoal to filter the whiskey. Contrary to popular opinion, Tennessee Whiskey meets every legal requirement for Bourbon.


Appearance: This whiskey had an intense red coloring to it. The microthin rim generated long, wavy tears.


Nose: There were two competing aspects to the nosing: one relied on vanilla, the other, mint. It took effort to get past either. What I found included corn and marshmallow. Inhaling the vapor through my lips presented me with toasted coconut.


Palate: The thin, oily mouthfeel yielded flavors of peppermint, cinnamon, and tarragon. At my mid-palate, I tasted coconut, vanilla, and shredded tobacco. The back comprised oak, eucalyptus, and chocolate.


Finish: Between the peppermint, tobacco, eucalyptus, coconut, and chocolate, I had trouble concentrating on which note closed first or last. It didn’t really matter. Overall, it had a very long duration, clocking in at 1:49.


Bottle, Bar, or Bust: If you enjoy spicy, savory Bourbons, you’ll want to watch for Leiper’s Fork Single Cask. This whiskey is all over those spectrums, even delving a smidge into the sweet spectrum. It is fun; it is well-balanced. That finish was mesmerizing.


What I experienced today leaves me damned curious about what else Leiper’s Fork has to offer. In the meantime, I’d recommend buying a Bottle for yourself.




Rock Town Arkansas Straight Bourbon Single Cask


  • Distillery: Rock Town Distillery
  • Age: 4 years
  • Mashbill: 82% locally-grown corn, 9% locally-grown wheat, 9% malted barley
  • Alcohol: 58.8% ABV (117.6°)
  • No. of Bottles: 200
  • Price: $90.00


Rock Town is Arkansas’ first legal post-Prohibition distillery. I first stumbled upon it about a year ago, and its background can be found in that review. Lost Lantern’s release is aged in #4 charred oak from Kelvin Cooperage.


Appearance: The mahogany-colored Bourbon formed a thick rim and sticky droplets that clung to the wall of my glass.


Nose: My olfactory sense plucked lemon curd, oak, and strawberries. Pulling the air through my lips produced a sensation of vanilla.


Palate: Rock Town’s mouthfeel was thin and dry. The front of my palate found roasted almonds, coconut, and corn. At mid-palate, I tasted vanilla. The back tasted of oak, clove, and nutmeg.


Finish: Out of nowhere, I picked out cherries and strawberries, along with corn, almonds, and oak. The longer finish lasted 1:44.


Bottle, Bar, or Bust: Rock Town Spirits is another distillery I was underwhelmed with the first time I tried its whiskeys. And, again, I approached this single-cask Bourbon cautiously.


The good news is that this Bourbon drank under its stated proof and went down easy. There was no ethanol blast. There was nothing harsh. However, it was also uninteresting and lacked depth.


I remain in the same place as before tasting Lost Lantern’s Rock Town Spirits expression: underwhelmed. It isn’t bad at all; I found it lacked anything noteworthy. As such, it deserves my Bar rating.   



Boulder Spirits Amragnac Finished Colorado Straight Bourbon Single Cask


  • Distillery: Boulder Spirits
  • Age: 7 years
  • Mashbill: 51% corn, 44% malted barley, 5% rye
  • Alcohol: 62.75% ABV (125.5°)
  • No. of Bottles: 300
  • Price: $120.00


Boulder Spirits was founded by a Scotsman who distills by traditional Scottish methods. I was introduced to this distillery in 2020. It was founded in 2007, and the background story is unique. You can read more about that here. Lost Lantern’s release is aged in #3 charred oak from Kelvin Cooperage and finished in a 300-liter former Armagnac cask.


Appearance: The liquid was the color of burnt sienna. The medium rim created fat, sticky, slow droplets.


Nose: The nose was fruity, with apples, pears, and raisins. It was accompanied by brown sugar, caramel, and oak. Inside my mouth, the vapor tasted of chocolate.


Palate: The soft, oily texture offered a warming sensation to my lips and tongue. Flavors of dried cherries, raisins, and baked apples engaged the front of my palate. The middle featured tobacco, chocolate, and toffee, while the back consisted of French oak, clove, and nutmeg.  


Finish: The chocolate, nutmeg, toffee, clove, and baked apples remained in my mouth and throat. It was definitively warming, yet not uncomfortable.


Bottle, Bar, or Bust: Contrast Boulder Spirits with Rock Town Spirits, and you’ll have a distillery that consistently puts out excellent pours. I’ve also found, for the most part, that Armagnac makes for a decent Bourbon finishing barrel. The recipe for success is there.


Boulder Spirits Armagnac Finish Single Cask offered classical notes on Armagnac-finished whiskeys. The fruity spiciness is almost a required component. The quality hinges on how much the core Bourbon permeates it. With its 44% malted barley, Boulder Spirits allowed that, leading to a positive sipping experience.


Is it worth $120.00? I believe you’re buying something unique enough to keep your attention with each draw. You’ll spend time analyzing this whiskey. I see that as worth a premium and find that Lost Lantern is knocking on the value ceiling. I’m happy to have this in my whiskey library, and it deserves my Bottle rating.



Final Thoughts: There are nine whiskeys here; few can afford the entire collection. The big question is, What would I get if I could only buy a few?


Here’s my recommended order:

  1. Corbin Cash
  2. Woodinville Whiskey
  3. Boulder Spirits
  4. Far Flung II
  5. Leiper’s Fork
  6. Union Horse
  7. High Wire Distilling
  8. Mississippi Memory
  9. Rock Town Spirits


And there you have it. Thanks for reading this incredibly long review. 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 to do so responsibly.