I happened upon a bottle of The Whistler Double Oaked Irish Whiskey while at the ABC store, and with a $30 price tag figured I should give it a try. This 80 proof Irish Whiskey is matured in Bourbon barrels, and then transferred to Oloroso Sherry casks for six months additional aging prior to bottling. The total aging time is more than 3 years in total. The aroma was filled with sherry, honeysuckle, black pepper, leather, and a solvent alcohol note. The flavor was sherry, more honeysuckle, leather, low black pepper, and a fruity peach character. The finish turns toward dry with leather and low peach lasting with hints of pepper and sherry long into the aftertaste. The alcohol was notable in the flavor, but never overdone and always working in tandem with the other characteristics of this whiskey. For 30 beans this isn’t a bad glass at all. I don’t particularly want to run out and snag another bottle with that odd solventy note to the aroma, but I am intrigued enough to see if I can find more bottles from Boann Distillery. I like what they are doing with the final aging in Sherry casks, and the price of admission is very good. Try it and let me know what you think.
I had been waiting on Maker’s Mark 46 to go on sale, so when it did I snagged a bottle in a gift pack with a stopper for $36. According to the website and bottle, they take standard Maker’s Mark and insert ten seared virgin French oak staves into the barrel and finish it for nine weeks in their limestone cellar. The name pays homage to the stave which was “Stave Profile No. 46” in their files. Enough about the history, let’s talk about the taste of this 47% ABV Bourbon. The aroma has a very nice leather and low peppery spice coupled to low brown sugar and caramel notes. The flavor has a deep caramel flavor with vanilla, oak, leather, and pepper. The alcohol starts to become apparent in the flavor and leads to a dry finish of leather and oak long into the aftertaste. The post consumption warming is notable and pleasant, but any higher and it might come off as hot. I’ve been thinking throughout this entire bottle it was rather boring, but as I stare at the empty bottle it actually dawned on me it had a nice complexity. For a $36 bottle of Bourbon it is no slouch. If standard Maker’s is $32 and I can snag this for four bucks more I would do so all day everyday. So if you see a bottle of Maker’s 46 at a great price bring it home to meet the family, you won’t be disappointed if the price is right.