Saturday, May 2, 2020

Buffalo Trace Warehouse Liquors Single Barrel Select Barrel No. 299 Kentucky Straight Bourbon

VITALS:
- $31
- 90 Proof
- NAS
- Barrel No. 299
- Kentucky

I have professed my love for the various store picks that Gene at Warehouse Liquors in Chicago gets in. Regardless of distillery or brand, I know whatever store pick I grab off their shelves is going to be a standout bottle, and I don't hesitate to grab a private pick of a brand I may not have even tried before.

Of course, the go-to picks are no-brainers. Any Four Roses, Buffalo Trace, Eagle Rare, 1792 Full Proof or Elijah Craig picks you can find on their shelves are almost always great and worth the price. The Buffalo Trace is where you get the most bang for your buck though. These are usually packed with flavor and at a price that's easy on the wallet.

The nose was very sweet and dessert-like.  I got a lot of cinnamon and chocolate, giving it a spicy richness, as well as a very sweet quality. I also got a slight peanut note, as well as something fruity but earthy, like prunes or figs or something like that. I couldn't pinpoint the specific note that I was getting, but it was that rich sweetness that seemed to permeate.

The flavor seemed to follow suit with the nose. It certainly came across as somewhat fruit, but this time it was more easy to pin down. I got kind of a cross between plum and blueberry. It had that tangy bite that I get from either fruit, the kind you notice on the sides of your tongue.

I also got some sweet cereal notes. It was like sweetened corn flakes, but not quite frosted flakes. It was like they were sweetened with maple syrup or brown sugar. The maple syrup wasn't overdone, though. It was just enough to notice it was there.

I also got a light cinnamon spice, and at times I noticed a nice dark chocolate note to add a bit of richness as well as a light bitterness, which was welcome to counter the sweetness.  All in all, everything in this seemed to meld together really well, with a nice balance of sweet, spicy, tangy and even bitter. It was perhaps a touch on the sweeter side than I would prefer, but that certainly didn't stop me from enjoying every sip from this bottle.

Interestingly, I reviewed the last Warehouse Buffalo Trace pick I had almost exactly one year ago, and I even gave it the same grade. That's the kind of consistency you look for not only in a particular product, but in the private selections of a particular store. Gene at Warehouse does amazing work finding the best bourbons on a regular basis, and this is just another example of that.

Grade: A-

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