Wednesday, November 3, 2021

Old Forester Gold Eagle Wine & Spirits Single Barrel Barrel Strength Kentucky Straight Bourbon

- $85
- 125.3 Proof
- 6.5 years
- Kentucky

Certain liquor stores in the Chicagoland area not named Binny's have managed to make a name for themselves as far as having good whiskey selections and getting good store picks. Antioch Liquors is one of those stores that's on my short list of places that I need to check out. But, it's way up north from me and not really on my way to much of anything, so unless I'm making a separate trip, I have no reason to head that way. And so it remains on my short list.

However, I saw a Facebook post a while back that they got these Old Forester single barrel picks in. Luckily for me, I have a buddy who lives in the area and was kind enough to run over there, pretty much at the drop of a dime, just to grab one of these bottles for me.  What's funny is he was told the owner had to put some bottles in back because a bunch of people from Wisconsin came looking for them. This, apparently, was one of those bottled tucked in back.

The nose on this one was a bit corn forward and sweet. It had a bit of a corn syrup note to it. It also has something rich and almost tangy, like amaretto with a light cinnamon note. It also had a sort of sawdust note and even a slight yeasty smell to it. It reminded me of a cinnamon pastry, perhaps like a cinnamon roll but without the icing.

I realize as I typed that out that it isn't the greatest sounding nose. That's fair. But, it's the flavor that really matters, and here, the flavor was pretty spot on.  I got this bright, almost sour cherry note. It was that natural cherry as opposed to the fake cherry note that I get sometimes and really don't enjoy.

That sour cherry note was balanced out by a brown sugar sweetness. It also had a cinnamon note that reminded me of cloves, but sweeter. There was also a light char note to this bourbon, which only further supported that cloves note with that added char/smoky quality.

The finish was almost all amaretto. I was wondering where that was from the nose, and on the finish it made its appearance. It was rich and spicy, with a sweet tanginess that I absolutely loved. It even had that sort of almond extract flavor to it, which is a flavor I happen to love, though I know is not for everyone.

This was a very complex, interesting and tasty bourbon. The sawdust on the nose and sour cherry up front were certainly . . . different. But, they weren't bad by any means and added a layer of complexity and made for an interesting pour. I really enjoyed this, and I may need to send my mule-buddy for more of their picks!

Grade: B+

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