- 101 Proof
- 9 years
Limestone Branch had really been hitting homeruns lately with their Yellowstone bottlings. I've enjoyed every one of their annual limited edition releases, though I haven't tried this year's release. And the single barrel picks that only hit the market recently have all been very good, at least the ones I've tried.
This bottle, however, is the cream of the crop, as the cool kids would say. There is no finishing to this whiskey. Instead, they just bottled some very delicious 9 year Kentucky straight bourbon. It's not clear who actually distilled this bourbon, but it is clear that they didn't go with any gimmicks or other variants in the whiskey for this limited release, and what they gave us was an outstanding bourbon.
On the nose I got rich and delicious notes of toffee and dark chocolate. There was also a light cinnamon spice to it. In addition to that, however, I got a sort of a blackberry note that somehow seemed to go perfectly with the chocolate and toffee notes. Perhaps that's some kind of candy combination I need to try, because it was really good.
While the cinnamon was light on the nose, it was much more prominent on the palate. I got some nice, warming cinnamon spice as well as a sharper black pepper spice immediately on the tip of my tongue, and it lasted through the finish.
As to actual flavor, the cinnamon spice came with a cinnamon flavor (if that makes sense), which was sweetened by vanilla bean and milk chocolate flavors--the kinds of flavors that are sweet but never too sweet. There was also something nutty and roasty, kind of like a hazelnut note.
At times it did go a touch sweeter, kind of like a caramel icing note. There was also a doughnut-like pastry note to it as well. However, again, it was never allowed to get too sweet, and even these notes were balanced out by a macchiato flavor that provided more of that roasty note and even a touch of bitterness to keep things even.
The finish was almost all sweet warm cinnamon and that vanilla bean flavor that seemed to work so well together. And the cinnamon and black pepper spices lingered long enough to keep me wanting that next sip.
When this was first released, I got to try it side by side with the Van Winkle Lot B 12 year old bourbon, and the consensus among the group of us was that this bourbon beat out the Van Winkle, and it didn't seem all that close. So when it suddenly hit the shelves again a year later, I had to have one. And then I had to drink that one. And now I have none, which makes me sad. But, I really enjoyed what was an incredible bourbon, and hopefully they'll go back to doing a simple but great bourbon in future Limited Edition releases.