Tuesday, October 18, 2022

Review: Early Times Bottled in Bond

Color (5%):  Very dark brown. Little crimson. Thin edges. 5/5

Nose (10%): Big orange peel note right off the bat. decently big booze kick. Honey sugars. actually requires a pretty heavy draw to get much more subtlety. I like orange but nothing too complex or nuanced. 5/10

Palate (20%): a bit of pepperiness from the rye. still some sweet orange character. Nice round creamy texture. pretty nice. not too wild and complex again, but hard to dislike. Nothing unpleasant at all. 16/20

Finish (10%): nice and creamy at the back actually. medium light finish. not very long at all. the pepper is there at first but not for very long. 7/10

Overall Impression and Harmony (30%):  22/30

Retry on Ice (25%): The creaminess is still there which often fades out with dilution. Not bad at all, but it doesn't improve anything or eliminate any shortcomings. it is fine, again not legendary status but fine. 20/25 

Total Ranking: 65% Legendary, Amazing, Great, Good, Fair, Average, Tolerable, Swill

Estimated Fair Price: $26
Actual Price: $21 per Liter

Conclusion: This is probably wonderful in a whiskey sour, especially in a New York Sour or a Stone Sour. I can see this being an excellent well whiskey at a lot of bars. That said It's not something I'd hunt for if I were looking for a manhattan or an old fashioned. There are more fun options. This is fine for a whiskey coke. It's not going to be anyone's top ten but it is good enough to do its function. This is still good for the money. It certainly can find a home in many houses but it isn't going on my display of great and legendary bottles for friends to experience. This is a well rail bottle at a pretty nice bar. one that can slot into most roles and not disappoint. 

Fact Sheet:
Distillery Location: Louisville KY
ABV: 50% 
Age Statement: at least 4 years
Ingredients: 79% Corn, 11% Rye, 10% Malted Barley

Monday, October 3, 2022

Review: Wild Turkey Rye 101

Color (5%):  Dark golden amber, thin edges, rich, well-aged. 5/5

Nose (10%): high alcohol evaporation for sure, I'm diving in deep to warm myself up lately, it seems. honestly pretty bland flavor notes at a first impression. lightly roasted apple pie notes. honey, cinnamon, nutmeg, pie crust, light brown sugar, butterscotch but not so sweet, fairly middle of the road. Nothing intense other than the initial booze buzz, vin du table. 6/10

Palate (20%): That's actually pretty good for the heat. mild numbing heat, a big hit in the back of the throat, hard to do a session with but not bad as a slow sipper kissing the tongue. not for glugging. certainly suitable for mixing. potent spike but rather monotone. 14/20

Finish (10%): the heat is long. There's a great flavor at the start but the heat lingers a hair too long on the first sip. 6/10

Overall Impression and Harmony (30%): Not something I'll be waiting for and savoring as a treat for myself. That said, it does serve a function. It's a mixer and certain notes can hold up in a highball or boulevardier / black Manhattan. I don't imagine any awards coming through for it, but it has a home as a mid-tier spirit at the right price. 19/30

Retry on Ice (25%): This does ease the painful heat of the first impression. As ice always does. Oddly, the burning finish lingers longer. something about polyphenols I'm sure. still an excellent mixer, but it lacks any nuance that I look for in a sipping whiskey or even a highball with soda. 16/25

Total Ranking: 66% Legendary, Amazing, Great, Good, Fair, Average, Tolerable, Swill

Estimated Fair Price: $29
Actual Price: $21

Conclusion: Still above average for some higher proof stuff I've had. Definitely worth it for the money. but this is a mixing whiskey. It will not break out of that tier. Get the soda water and the mountain dew. It's also good in cocktails as previously mentioned. Not perfect but good enough for bulk batches. It's a budget choice but a good one.

Fact Sheet: Straight rye
Distillery Location: Kentucky
ABV: 50.5%
Age Statement: aged in new oak