Ben Holladay One Barrel Bourbon Review

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Ben Holladay One Barrel Bourbon is a 7-year-old, 122.9 proof bourbon produced by the Holladay Distillery in Missouri. This bourbon, along with the Holladay Soft Red Winter Wheat, are classified as Missouri Bourbons, a relatively recent designation. Ben Holladay One Barrel Bourbon is notable for its rapid flavor progression from sweet fruits & caramel to dry oak, tannins, and spice. Learn all about it in our review!
Ben Holladay
One Barrel Bourbon
Missouri Straight Bourbon Whiskey
7 Years 4 months old
122.9 Proof
MSRP: $89.99

Please enjoy our Ben Holladay One Barrel Bourbon Review!

Selected by and bottled for Justins’ House of Bourbon

Holladay Distillery (McCormick Distilling Company) History

Founded in 1856 on a Missouri limestone spring originally discovered by Lewis and Clark, the distillery, now known as Holladay Distillery, boasts a rich history. The Holladay brothers, one of whom, Ben, became the “Stagecoach King,” established the distillery. It was initially named the Blue Springs Distillery.

The distillery’s ownership and name changed over the years, until, it became the McCormick Distilling Company in 1942. McCormick was purchased by Midwest Grain Products in 1950, was later almost destroyed completely by fire. It finally ceased bourbon production in 1985 in favor of other spirits. In 1993, the distillery was purchased by its current owners. Ultimately, the distillery returned to its roots in 2016, once again producing bourbon, and doing so under the Holladay Distillery name.

Holladay Distillery Bourbons

There are two main lines of bourbon produced under the Holladay label: the Ben Holladay Bourbon and Holladay Soft Red Winter Wheat. They have essentially the same mash bills, except that one uses soft red wheat and the other uses rye. Both are classified as Missouri Bourbons. So, let’s delve into that for a moment.

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Missouri Bourbon

What exactly is a Missouri Bourbon? Is it just a bourbon distilled in Missouri? Well, yes it is; but there’s more to it than that. According to Revised Missouri Statute § 311.025, which went into effect August 28, 2019, a Missouri Bourbon is defined as such:

  1. To qualify as “Missouri Bourbon” or “Missouri Bourbon Whiskey”, and to be labeled as such, a product shall be a spirit that meets the following conditions:
    (1) The product shall be mashed, fermented, distilled, aged, and bottled in Missouri; and
    (2) The product shall be aged in oak barrels manufactured in Missouri.
  2. Beginning January 1, 2020, to qualify as “Missouri Bourbon” or “Missouri Bourbon Whiskey”, and to be labeled as such, all corn used in the mash must be Missouri-grown corn.
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Mash Bill – Ben Holladay One Barrel Bourbon Review

Mash Bill: Corn 73%, Rye 15%, Malted Barley 12%
Distilled on 04/08/2016
Distilled, aged & bottled by Holladay Distillery, Weston, MO

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Tasting Notes

Let’s taste it:

🛏 Rested for 15 minutes in a Glencairn

👉🏻Nose: Sweet dark cherry, dark plums, light orange citrus, dried apricots, medium dark caramel, light brown sugar, hint of cinnamon, light oak & cedar; moderate alcohol
👉🏻Taste: Carmel, sweet cherry, brown sugar; rapidly appearing dry oak, tannins and white pepper spice…
👉🏻Finish: …that continue to grow into the finish. Some sweetness and dark cherry fruit lingers, as well; subtle butterscotch undertone; mild barrel char and smokiness develop much later on; long lingering finish; moderate deep burn

Rapid Flavor Progression

While this Ben Holladay Bourbon One Barrel Bourbon has classic bourbon flavors, it is very interesting how rapidly they progress through fairly sweet fruits & caramel in the nose to dry oak, tannins and spice later in the taste and in the finish. Interestingly, I am finding the flavors in the nose to vary a bit from day to day, although the taste and finish remain similar. Also, the alcohol is quite noticeable, and this bourbon drinks every bit of its 122.9 proof.

Bottle & Glencairn - Ben Holladay One Barrel Bourbon Review
Ben Holladay One Barrel Bourbon Is A Single Barrel

Ben Holladay One Barrel Bourbon is my first introduction to Holladay bourbons. I am always hesitant to review a single barrel, since I am not sure how it compares to a distillery’s regular releases. But, then again, it should still be representative of their overall style, and so remains relevant. However, giving “Best Of” awards to single barrels is a whole other story, which we won’t delve into now.

Have you had any of the Holladay bourbons? What did you think? Cheers!🥃

We hope you have enjoyed our Ben Holladay One Barrel Bourbon review! Would you like to learn about another Missouri distillery? Then read our Wood Hat Spirits Distillery Visit & Tour Review!

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