43% ABV - Kentucky, USA
Nose: Slightly woody, caramelized sugars, hint of fruits including cherry, spices, and a background cereal or beer mash (which seemed to get stronger with time).
Taste: Again, woody on the arrival but then develops with citrus, leather, some vanilla and fruits. It has a fairly light mouthfeel.
Finish: There is a slight amount of citrus heat wafting around, but it’s mostly oak tannins and a slight cereal or bread character in this medium to short finish.
It has been a long, long time since I have had any Michter’s whiskey… I recall that I attended a masterclass where I sampled the full range a few years ago, and it has been nothing since! So, this is a nice return to the flavours. I am thankful to my friend who gifted me this on my birthday.
When I come back to this dram after sampling a few other bourbons, the wood spices and cereal notes are really significant by comparison. The more I paused in between sips I want to say that a dill pickle note started to come out. Michter’s Sour Mash really does not need water – adding some didn’t make much of a difference for me, and I was more concerned that I was in danger of drowning it. This one scored particularly high on taste, relative to nose and finish, which brought the rating/score up higher than I would have figured. (And yes, this isn’t a bourbon itself, as Michter’s says "with its unique grain selection, it cannot be categorized as a rye or a bourbon".)
This whiskey was tasted side-by-side(-by-side) with Old Rip Van Winkle 10-Year and George T. Stagg (2018). I figured that since I do not drink bourbons very often (yes, or American whiskey), that I would write notes for all of them together! I think it really helped to pick out some of the nuances.
Details: Batch No. 18J1608. Bottle Code A183041608.
Tasting Notes (Official): Warm toasted burnt sugar notes with spice, sweet, smoky fruit, candied cherries, and honeyed vanilla, remarkably elegant. Starts out like a bourbon, finishes like a rye.
Tasted 11 June 2020. (Posted 13 June 2020.)