Tuesday, August 29, 2023

Elijah Craig Barrel Proof Kentucky Straight Bourbon - Batch No. C922

- $65
- 124.8 Proof
- 12 Years
- Batch No. C922
- Kentucky

I have been lucky enough to get my hands on most releases of a couple of the more popular barrel strength releases -- Stagg (formerly Stagg, Jr.) and Elijah Craig Barrel Proof.  What's amazing about these two whiskies is that for the most part they've remained fairly reasonable in pricing. They are also both semi-annual releases, so if I don't get a particular one, I know another one will be coming out shortly.

However, I've managed to get a sort of backlog on both.  So, I've been making it a point to start working my way through my sub-collection of ECBP bottles.  It's kind of funny. I just haven't felt compelled to open them sooner, because I already know they're going to be good. It's a bit axiomatic, I guess.  I know it's good, so I drink other stuff instead. But, I'm making it a point to open them and try the different batches, and this one only confirmed what I already knew.

The nose on this was full of sweet cinnamon and oak. It had a nice balance of sweet, dessert-like notes, an earthy and slightly bitter oak note and a cinnamon spice. In fact, it kind of had a barbecue rub type of aroma to it, but one that is heavy on the brown sugar. It even had a little bit of a chili powder note to it. It smelled great, even if a bit unlike most Elijah Craig's I've had.

The flavor really carried that barbecue note forward. I certainly got some cinnamon and oak, though neither were super strong or overwhelming. What really came forward, though, was the brown sugar. It wasn't that brown sugar note that I get off of some Canadian whiskies, though. Instead it was more of a brown butter note. It was sweet and lightly smokey and had a bit of unctuousness to it (I've clearly been watching too much Food Network).

Even the finish had that barbecue feeling to it. The oily texture of the bourbon coated my mouth with that light smokiness and brown butter. But, it also had a bit of a paprika note to really round out that barbecue flavor. I also got cooked cherries on the finish, with a lingering rich sweetness that seemed to perfectly balance out everything else and bring this from a spicy bourbon to a very well-balanced one.

My final thought? Guess what . . . it's good! No surprise there! Perhaps I've had others that have been better (some have been absolutely great), but this one was absolutely delicious, and I kind of appreciated that it was a bit off-profile.

Grade: B+

No comments:

Post a Comment