I been awaiting and awanting to try the new Heaven Hill 'Larceny' bourbon. I purchased a bottle today for $20. I understand that it is a 'wheat' bourbon designed to compete with Maker's Mark. I believe this 'Very Speical Small Batch' bourbon is said to be composed of bourbons between 6 and 12 years of age. I find it to be certainly worth its asking price. I find it to have the Heaven Hill house soft sweetness, with a bit more peppery spice and a slight edgy cast in the finish. I have no Maker's on hand with which to make a comparison, but I do have some Weller 12 YO. The Larceny (my opinion) has a spicer ending, with as I noted above, an edgyness that gives the finish more length........ but at something of a cost to the flavor. I think 'Larceny' is strongest at mid-palate where the barrel flavors predominate. I prefer the Weller 12 YO, it has more subtlety to my palate. My mind is already playing with the idea as to where the 'Larceny' might best serve in a vatting. It will have to include a means of taking the edge off the finish.
Another whiskey I bought today is BEER BARREL BOURBON from New Holland Artisan Spirits out of Holland Michigan. Now, y'all and all, I consider this more or less a 'novelty' whiskey........ for $26, I was willing to see how it tastes. The label says that the New Holland Brewing Company gets their bourbon from Indiana. They say on the bottle that it is first aged in new oak barrels for a few years and then finished in beer barrels for three months. Strange to say, I actually like it quite well. The nose has a decidedly beery background to it...... not at all (to this nose) unpleasant. The beer barrels seem to 'round' the edges of a very young bourbon and give it an unexpected twist that in some ways mimics more malt in the recipe (no surprise there, eh?). I did not know what to expect from this whiskey and thought the hops might make it too bitter. Not so! I sit here with a bottle of 'Larceny' close at hand.......... and drink the Beer Barrel Bourbon by preference.............. amazed I am!!
Do not go gentle into that good night,
Old age should burn and rage at close of day;
Rage, rage against the dying of the light. - Dylan Thomas