Barrell Bourbon Batch 024 $90 - 91 Points

As the weather turns cold in much of the nation., here's something that'll warm your cockles.

Barrell Craft Spirits (yes, the double L in Barrell is intentional, and it's pronounced the same as barrel) is a blender/bottler based in Louisville. Blender/bottlers buy barrels and then combine them to create their own batches, selecting components to achieve a the-sum-is-greater-than-the-parts result. Because they are able to carefully select their component barrel-aged whiskeys (and rums) from warehouses in Kentucky, Indiana, and Tennessee, they are able to be nimble in bringing to market what today's consumers want - which can be a moving target that's difficult to hit if you're limited to what you might have distilled years ago.  

Following is the first of three samples, so be on the lookout for more from this dynamic brand.

Beautiful orange marmalade and toasted caramel color. Fresh, clean aromatics serving up exciting waves of citrus, pine sap, and warming tasted oak. Hot in the mouth (as you'd expect from a cask strength whiskey), but delivering a full spectrum frequency of electric flavors: creme brûlée over saddle leather framed by spicy ginger and pepper. A thrill ride of a sip that's followed by a finish that remains invigorating for a long while before mellowing into a comforting embrace. A blend of high-rye bourbons ranging in age from 9 to 15 years bottles at 113.9 proof. Pricey, for sure, but also quite unique and very high quality. 91 Points. (Sample)