Thursday, September 29, 2022

Review: Clyde May's Original Alabama Style Whiskey (Batch No. 52, Recipe No. 1)

 Color (5%):  lovely light brown / bronze fading to a very thin clear edge, a long gradient. 3/5

Nose (10%): light honeyed apple note, 4/10 alcohol, mild spice, powdered sugar/sherbet, can't quite place it. sort of nondistinct. 6/10

Palate (20%): I taste vanilla, spice, apple. An interesting mash bill. I'm used to bourbon, rye, and single malt. I think there's a bit of wheat or something else in here. I'd certainly guess corn is in there, but I'm going to surprise myself on this tasting. It has a rather mild flavor, leaning me toward wheat. 16/20

Finish (10%): a rather long finish, lovely caramel apple lingers, sherbet. a bit sweet reaffirming my guess of corn. 9/10

Overall Impression and Harmony (30%): A very mild whiskey overall by my standards. The alcohol impact is undoubtedly there and represents what it is. The nose isn't all that much but I do really enjoy sipping this. It reminds me of some Irish whiskeys I've had in terms of intensity, which is to say, lighter. Certainly sweet, not the most candy-like whiskey I've had, but certainly sweet, butterscotch sweet. 24/30

Retry on Ice (25%): nose pops a bit more actually. Sweet finish lessens. Baked apple and oak come through more. Not as good as neat. 16/25

Total Ranking: 74% Legendary, Amazing, Great, Good, Fair, Average, Tolerable, Swill

Estimated Fair Price: $37
Actual Price: $33

Conclusion: I would recommend this whiskey with light foods, appetizers, salads, etc. Watermelon salads come to mind.  Not particular of any style, but everything can find its place. Turns out it is finished with real apples. doesn't really hold up to any intense flavors so doesn't quite fit the whiskey niche for cocktails. More of a brandy/calvados. It's actually sold as an aged moonshine rather than a whiskey. The story that this brand sells is a good one, harkening back to prohibition and some historic styles. I don't know who to pitch this to. A whiskey novice won't get a good education from this. A whiskey connoisseur will have the styles that they like best. The flavoring component will put off purists. But this is good, and I do recommend it. I want this to start a meal, not finish it, which is rare for a whiskey. And that's cool. 

Fact Sheet:
Distillery Location: Florida, USA
ABV: 42.5% (85 proof)
Age Statement: 4 years
Method: finished with a hint of apple
Awards: 93 pt 2017 Ultimate Spirits Challenge, 93 pt 2012 Wine Enthusiast Magazine Top-50 Spirit

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