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Michter’s Sour Mash

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.)

83/100
Detailed Rating Information...

90+: Fantastic whisky; highly recommended. My favourite whiskies – I might have more than one bottle if the price is right and the supply is limited! The higher values in this range will reflect a stronger balance and consistency between components.
85-89: Great whisky; recommended. Whiskies that really tick the flavour boxes and you'll likely hear about these from me. Great bottles to have stocked at all times.
80-84: Very good whisky; recommended, but still consider trying before you buy. Anything is this range or above I would gladly order at a restaurant or buy a bottle.
75-79: Good whisky; consider trying before you buy. These are whiskies that I enjoyed drinking, but likely would reach for another bottle from the shelf or select something different to order.
65-74: Average; consider trying before you buy, but not recommended. There is nothing that stood out about this whisky and I might be inclined to mix it with soda or in a cocktail, instead of trying to enjoy its own flavours.
50-64: Bad; not recommended.


Whisky Bottle