- Barrel No. 016
It's been a while since I've gone back to Blanton's. In fact, this bottle hit Binny's shelves sometime in 2020, and I just now got around to finishing it. I can't exactly say for sure why. Perhaps I grew tired of Blanton's (not likely). Perhaps there was just always something new to try (more likely). Either way, I went a pretty good amount of time before going back to this bottle.
But, a couple weeks ago I got it in my that I could use some old reliable mashbill #2, and I reached for this Binny's store pick that I got a few years back. In fact, by this point I had kind of forgotten whether this was a standout or not, or even what kind of profile it had. It was kind of fun, actually, revisiting it with no recall of my impressions before.
On the nose I got a slight aroma of charred wood. Weirdly, though, it came across as sweet, almost a sugary char, kind of like the char you get from burnt barbecue sauce when you grill. I also got a nice cinnamon note as well as some brown sugar. There was also a pastry-like pie-crust note to this as well, and it all came together as a very dessert-like nose.
I did not, however, get any of that char note on the palate. Rather, the backbone here was caramel and cinnamon. There was also a sort of unsweetened vanilla layer underscoring everything, but the sweetness came from those caramel notes.
There was also something jammy to this, with notes of rich, dark fruits like raisin and raspberry, and maybe even some fig. There was also a sort of chocolate covered pretzel note to it, with a sweet, chocolatey flavor along with a salty cracker-like note. This combo of the dark fruits and the chocolate covered pretzel was pretty awesome.
On the finish, I got more of that cracker note, and perhaps even a bit of a cereal note. It definitely became grain forward, as what little spice seemed to disappear, and even the sweetness was fleeting. This came across as more of a watery mouthfeel than other Blanton's I've had, and it led to almost no lingering finish whatsoever.
Give this barrel some proof and some viscosity, and it's amazing! The flavor combinations were fantastic, but it just came across as thin and watery, not allowing me to really savor those flavors like I wanted to.
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