Bourbon Reviews, Distillery News and Information
Small Batch, Bottled In Bond
Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey
Please enjoy our Wilderness Trail 8 Year Wheated Bourbon review!
Wilderness Trail Was Founded In 2012
Most people are probably familiar with Wilderness Trail Distillery at this point. Shane Baker and Dr. Pat Heist founded the distillery in Danville, Kentucky, back in 2012, after the duo had already successfully built a related business, Ferm Solutions. Ferm Solutions is a consulting company to the fuel alcohol and distilled spirits industry, and also cultivates and supplies yeast for many in those industries, including some of the distilleries that we all know and love. Shane and Pat used their expertise (and profits) from Ferm Solutions to build Wilderness Trail Distillery and begin producing their own whiskeys. We had to wait a while to try them, though, because they released their first whiskey as a Bottled-in-Bond, and therefore it had to be at least 4 years old.
Wilderness Trail 8 Year Old Wheated Bourbon Is Very Exciting!
I have been a huge fan of Wilderness Trail Distillery since the beginning, and therefore am very excited about their first 8 year old wheated bourbon release. They released their first whiskey, which happened to also be a wheated bourbon, at 4 years old, back in April 2018. Similar to that initial release, this bourbon was also made back before they had a column still. So, despite what the label says, it was distilled in a pot still. It’s a small batch of 18 barrels and uses the same mashbill as all of Wilderness Trail’s wheated bourbons: 64% corn, 24% wheat and 12% malted barley. Also, like all Wilderness Trail whiskeys, it is made from a sweet mash. Likewise, as is the case for all of their flagship whiskeys, it is Bottled In Bond.
Tasting Notes – Wilderness Trail 8 Year Wheated Bourbon Review
Let’s taste it:
🛌 Rested for 15 minutes in a Glencairn
👉Nose: Fairly sweet, with dark cherry, caramel, brown sugar, vanilla & leather; cedar, oak; relatively mild alcohol
👉Taste: Dark cherry, light butterscotch and toffee; mild sweetness; dry oak; a hint of bitter citrus
👉Finish: Fairly rapidly develops white pepper spice and becomes fairly dry, with dry oak and tannins; some cherry lingers; long finish, with a moderate burn
Quite A Change Over The First Few Days
This bottle has changed quite a bit in the 5 days that it has been open. Initially, the nose had very rich brown sugar notes with an almost Golden Grahams cereal – honey roasted graham cracker like overtone. Now, the cherry is more dominant, and those richer flavors have faded into the background.
Also, when I first opened my bottle of Wilderness Trail 8 Year Wheated Bourbon, the dry oak and tannins in the taste and finish were striking. As I had anticipated, these flavors have become less pronounced after a few days, but they are still present to some degree.
What A Difference A Few Years Make!
Wilderness Trail wheated bourbon is considerably different at 8 years old than it was in its relative youth. There are dark cherries now present throughout, not something that I generally had associated with Wilderness Trail before. There is some of the caramel and toffee remaining, but it is more subdued than in its younger days. Leather, generally a flavor that develops later on, joins in as well. The dry oak and white pepper spice that appear later on are also significantly different than the finish of younger versions. The sweet corn is largely gone. Some sweetness remains in the nose, although it doesn’t really have that corn character anymore.
Wilderness Trail 8 Year Wheated Bourbon Is All Grown Up
Really, that is to say that Wilderness Trail Wheated Bourbon is all grown up now. Most people would consider an 8 year old bourbon fully mature and right in its “sweet-spot”. I think the confusion my brain is having with it, is just how different it is from the younger versions with which I am so familiar.
Interestingly, not only is it all grown up, but to me, Wilderness Trail 8 Year Wheated Bourbon drinks older than its age. It makes me wonder what will happen in a couple more years?
The Pros And Cons
So, I think there is both good news and less good news here. For those who were not fans of Wilderness Trail Wheated Bourbon in its younger days, you should probably try it again now. It is significantly different and has lost some of the sweet corn and grainier notes that may not have been to your liking. For those who were fans of Wilderness Trail Wheated Bourbon in its younger days, you may be a bit surprised as to what it tastes like now in its more mature form, and it may actually take a little getting used to.
Have you tried the Wilderness Trail 8 Year Wheated Bourbon? What did you think? Cheers!🥃
We hope you have enjoyed our Wilderness Trail 8 Year Wheated Bourbon review! Would you like to learn about Wilderness Trail’s other 8 year old bourbon? Then you’ll want to read our Wilderness Trail 8 Year High Rye Bourbon Review! Or, maybe you are interested in what their younger Small Batch Wheated Bourbon is like? It’s actually the one that is widely available. In that case, check out our Wilderness Trail Small Batch Wheated Bourbon Review!
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