Monday, June 19, 2023

Eagle Rare Binny's Single Barrel Select Barrel #044 Kentucky Straight Bourbon

- $35
- 90 Proof
- 10 Years
- Barrel #044
- Kentucky

Eagle Rare is the bourbon that got me into bourbon. It was the one that opened my eyes to a world beyond Scotch, and now bourbon absolutely dominates my whiskey shelf in my basement. So, it should then come as no surprise that Eagle Rare still holds a special place in my hear and always will.

And, for that reason, I grab every Eagle Rare store pick that I can find. Granted, this was a much more fruitful venture a few years ago.  It seems now that Eagle Rare picks are not only few and far between, but are also being treated as highly allocated whiskeys, only getting into the hands of select customers. I was lucky enough, though, to get my hands on this Binny's release back in 2020.  Given their relative scarcity, I waited a bit to finally open it, but eventually they all get opened at some point.

The nose on this one was great.  I got notes of vanilla and cinnamon, along with a great bready note. It definitely had a cinnamon roll thing going on. There was something else as well, though. I got candied pecan along with a definite cherry note, like a Maraschino cherry Everything seemed to blend together like a Danish and cinnamon roll hybrid.

As to flavor, the cherry note from the nose seemed to take center stage. It still had that Maraschino lean to it, along with a bit of a syrupy sweetness.  There was something tangy and boozy about it as well, kind of like amaretto liqueur.  The pecan note was there as well to offer a nutty quality, and even a touch of bitterness, but without the sweetness.

The tangy bite at times came across as an orange peel notes, and other times like tart cherry. At times it had that bitter bite that you sometimes get when eating walnuts.  As great and perfectly complementary all the notes on the nose were, I couldn't say the same thing for the flavor.  This seemed a bit all over the place, and the bitter notes didn't seem to balance out the sweetness, but rather competed with it.

On the nose the boozy note really seemed to come through, but it was more as a cherry liqueur than amaretto. The problem with this, though, is it seemed more like an artificial cherry note, and that's the flavor that seemed to linger on the finish, along with a lightly bitter oak note. The finish left a bit to be desired.

This was not my favorite barrel of Eagle Rare. That said, even lesser showings are still pretty good, and this bottle was not long for this world once it was finally opened.

Grade: B-

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