It’s a simple bourbon, and it is passable; however, it too herb forward for me, and I’m unsure of the overall balance of some of the flavors and I find it a little plain. Wouldn’t turn it down, but I wouldn’t seek it out.
As this is simple and straightforward bourbon, I imagine 1792 Small Batch being easily enjoyed in a crisp, white, modern restaurant where everything is bright and freshly cleaned. This will give you just enough texture to bring some color to the space without detracting from the simple beauty of the pristine interior.
– Made In: Bardstown, Kentucky, USA
– Distiller: Barton 1792 Distillery
– Classification: Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey; Small Batch
– Age: nas
– Mash Bill: undisclosed; believed to be their “high rye” mash bill, indicating possibly 15-25% rye*
– Casks: Char #3.5
– Barrel Entry Proof: 125
– ABV: 46.65% (93.7 proof)
– Price: $29.95 USD in Idaho
*Find more information at http://1792barton.com
ENJOYMENT METHOD: Neat from a Glencairn glass with father and fellow reviewer, Brian Dawson (username: bdawson57). Check out his review for this bourbon and many others on his profile!
Caramel corn comes out of the glass first, mixing with a fresh cedar wood, dusty corn and white pepper. I also find an artificial sweetness too, almost like marshmallows? I get a tiny twinge of bitter hazelnut, but for the most part, this is pretty sweet – not just with the caramel popcorn first noted, but also with brown sugar, graham cracker pie crust, allspice, and an almost milk-like creamy quality like half-n-half, perhaps. I’ve never pulled that from a dram before, and while I’m very interested to see what the sip brings, I’m a little on the fence about this nosing.
– Mouth Feel: This is fresh with a little bite, but this is mostly oily.
– Balance: Although it isn’t bad, I think some of the flavors are confused about their place here, so I suppose that this average?
– Visual: Tawny in color, there are thick legs that coat the glass, which eventually fade to a couple of droplets.
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– Taste: There is a tang that is immediately apparent, and it is very herbal and fresh. It starts with a quick burn of alcohol becoming sharp lemongrass and lavender herbal essence.
Subsequent sips settle the herbs down, which allows for a little bit of cherry to peek out at the end of the sip. I’m not totally sure about the transition between the flavors, but it’s okay. There’s a bit of simple syrup, but it seems a little confused as to where it fits in the equation.
White pepper and rye are there for spice, along with a light oak and vanilla. Somewhere here too, (maybe at the beginning of the sip with the herbs), there’s a feisty, yeasty component, but it isn’t contributing to a bread, so it’s slightly odd.
A Kentucky chew makes the herb/cherry sensation intensify, but the alcohol still remains very calm and inoffensive.
– Lasting Power: Short to medium. The warmth and flavors (mostly flavors) will stick around, but it seems to require a Kentucky chew if that’s what you’re looking for.
– Between Sips: A clean and fresh feeling is primarily what I’m left with between sips. It seems more herbal, but I can drag out the yeast and a little cherry if I really try.
– No More: This does improve as I get deeper into the glass, as the herbal notes continue to calm down. They are still there, and I wish they weren’t, but I’ll take them as they are now, rather than how they were. In their place is cherry, but it’s too gentle to truly be the dominant flavor.
The empty Glencairn is a sugary, chewy water-logged oak. Still not mind-blowing, but this is decent enough.