Thursday, April 21, 2016

Corsair Triple Smoke Barrel Strength Binny's Private Selection

- $80
- 138.8 Proof
- Barrel No. N30-14-0020

Corsair Distillery's Triple Smoke will forever remind me of New Orleans, where, for whatever reason, I found myself enjoying a healthy pour of the stuff at 21st Amendment to start off each night. I'm not sure why that was my drink of choice there, but it was, and it'll be with me forever.

Accordingly, when I got back to the Chicago area, knowing that there were bottles sitting on the shelf, I immediately went to Binny's and picked up one of their private selection, barrel strength offerings of Triple Smoke, eager to try the stuff as nature intended it!

When I initially saw bottles of this stuff, I had the impression that the barley malt was smoked three different times prior to distillation. That is not exactly the case, though. Rather, it is made from a blend of three barley malts subjected to smoke from three different fuels: cherry wood, peat and beechwood. It's certainly an interesting concept, and based on my experience with their standard offering, one that I knew I was on board with.

The nose, despite all the smoke, is nonetheless buttery and sweet. Sure, the smoke permeates as would be expected, but in the manner of a well-done, peated single-Scotch.

On the palate it has the perfect amount of smoke. The flavor comes through naturally, rather than as if someone added a bottle of liquid smoke to the barrel. The smoke flavor tastes as though it belonged there and not as if it were forced upon you.

The burn at this high proof is unavoidable, but it works well with the smokey flavor, offset by a very pleasant and complementary sweetness that I didn't really expect. It has the soft, earthy flavor you get from barley grain followed by the butterscotch flavor at the back of your throat. It comes across as a bolder, meatier peated Scotch.

A distinct honey flavor also worked its way to the front, along with very rich hints of oak and cherry. Weird as it may seem, it tasted to me like a smokey, buttery banana split! I guess that's to say that this whiskey offers a unique blend of flavors, from fruity to buttery to smokey. But, in the end, they all work, and I found myself really enjoying this bottle!

Grade: B+

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