Four Roses is a unique distillery. They make all of their bourbons from 10 different recipes. They can use one recipe to make a single barrel, or multiple recipes to make a small batch. So, today I thought I would just start with the Four Roses basics, and review the 10 Four Roses recipes used to make all of their bourbons.
Four Roses Small Batch Bourbon is one of the bourbons in Four Roses main lineup. The others being Four Roses Bourbon, Four Roses Single Barrel and Four Roses Small Batch Select. It is made by mingling together 4 of Four Roses 10 recipes after they have aged a minimum of 6-7 years, and it is bottled at 90 proof. According to Four Roses, those recipes “have been expertly selected by our Master Distiller at the peak of maturation to create this very mellow and perfectly balanced Bourbon.”
There isn’t much information out there about Rowan’s Creek Bourbon. According to the label, the bourbon takes its name from Rowan’s Creek, which runs through Willett Distillery. In reality, the creek is down the hill from the distillery, but we’re all friends here, so that’s close enough.😊 It seems that at one time in the not too distant past Rowan’s Creek Bourbon bore a 12 year age statement; but alas, those days are gone.
The origins of this bourbon and its mash bill(s) are also a mystery, although that mystery has been partially solved. Originally, Rowan’s Creek was made from sourced bourbon, as were all of Willett’s bourbons. The label now does state that it is distilled, aged and bottled by Willett Distillery, so the origin is no longer a mystery. The bottle I am reviewing however only says that it was “Bottled by Rowan’s Creek Distilling” (a Willett dba), so whether it was distilled all, or in part, or not at all, at Willett is unknown.
Willett Distillery is perhaps best known for its highly sought after Willett Family Estate whiskeys, but there are many, many more brands also produced at this distillery. In fact, the Willett Family Estate is just a small percentage of the whiskey produced by Willett. One of these other brands is Noah’s Mill Bourbon.
There is not much information out there about Noah’s Mill, other than that it once bore a 15 year old age statement, as recently as the early 2010’s. It now may or may not be a blend of bourbons aged anywhere from 4-20 years and both wheated and rye bourbon recipes. That is purely conjecture, but info found all over the web.
Wilderness Trail Four Grain Bourbon is the distillery’s latest release. This limited edition bourbon was available for purchase at their holiday open house, and it is part of their cancer series.
The folks at Wilderness Trail Distillery have had prior releases to support families impacted by cancer, notably the F*ck Cancer bottles which had included the famous 15 year old Willett Bourbon purchased at the Bourbon Crusaders’ American Cancer Society benefit in 2018 and then aged another year at Wilderness Trail. There were other whiskeys also released in this series.
If you’ll recall from my last post, this is one of the bourbons that is only available at the You Do Bourbon Experience. It is made from Heaven Hill’s standard bourbon mash bill (78% corn, 10% rye, 12% malted barley), aged at least 8 years on the 6th floor of their warehouses, and is a small batch of 10 barrels. It’s bottled at barrel proof. In contrast to Elijah Craig Barrel Proof, the same mash bill is used, but aging is for at least 12 years on the 5th floor and batch size is around 16 barrels. One can not help but notice the similarities of the packaging to William Heavenhill; ignoring the fact that my wonderful wife 😍 had a few issues with filling in and placing the label.😊 It may sound silly, but it’s more difficult than it looks – check out the photos to see some of the outtakes by me!
I hope you enjoy my Maker’s Mark CommUNITY Batch Review! This is will be the second year that The LEE Initiative and Maker’s Mark have released the CommUNITY Batch. Maker’s Mark has donated all of the bourbon, so the proceeds go entirely to support the cause! The first CommUNITY Batch was released last year, and raised over $500K from 34 blended barrels of whiskey! The money provided assistance to many hospitality industry employees who were affected by the pandemic.
Brad Paisley has just released a new whiskey and it’s called American Highway Reserve Bourbon. Its novelty is that one of its components, underwent some of its aging while stored in a 53-foot semi-trailer that followed his 2019 nation-wide tour. So the bourbon travelled 7,314 miles across 25 states, from coast to coast. Thus their slogan: “Made in Kentucky, Aged across America”.
This whiskey, The Untold Story Of Kentucky Whiskey from Castle & Key Distillery, is a special one. Released by Castle & Key Distillery in partnership with the Kentucky Black Bourbon Guild, it is dedicated to uncovering and telling stories from generations past. The series honors African American contributions to the distilling industry, contributions which are many but which have not been widely recognized or discussed. This whiskey is also a step towards the future as well. It was donated by Castle & Key and 100% of the proceeds will go to the Castle & Key Scholarship Fund. This release, Chapter 1, will be the first release of a series of annual “Chapters”, each telling part of the story, right on the bottle. Check out the photos to read it.
Please enjoy my Kentucky Owl Wiseman Bourbon Review! Have you heard of The Wiseman Bourbon from Kentucky Owl? This bourbon is unique for the brand because it is produced and distilled by Kentucky Owl in collaboration with the Bardstown Bourbon Company. It’s a blend of Kentucky Owl 4 year old wheat and high rye bourbons, combined with 5 1/2 and 8 1/2 year old Kentucky sourced bourbons. It is also the first release under Master Blender John Rhea.