The high proof of Elijah Craig Barrel Proof (ECBP) B518 is definitely noticeable, but manageable as it carries blended flavors through rather than hiding them.
Distilled, and bottled by Heaven Hill
Age: 12 years
Mash bill of 75% corn, 13% rye, 12% malted barley
Bottled at barrel proof 66.7% ABV (133.4 Proof)
The high proof of this bourbon presents a full mouthfeel which nicely cuts the sweetness. The warming sensation on the tongue and throat helps merge the flavors together. Be forewarned: holding this bourbon in the mouth for more than a few seconds deadens the sweetness and flavours.
The enjoyable bourbon aroma of rich buttery caramel wafts over heavy oak infused vanilla. There is a faint aire of caramelized apple pastry present as well. The high proof is nicely subdued.
The caramel and vanilla sensed on the nose is there, but only on the fringes. The tongue picks up intense cinnamon and a great deal of woodiness which fades to sweet and rich graham cracker pie crust. There is a fair amount of dry bourbon burn owing to the high proof which tends to mask more subtle flavours.
ECBP B518 finishes with heat and a bold brown sugar sweetness, light vanilla and a heady woodiness. While the finish is long and warm, considering the proof, this bourbon has much less burn than one might expect.