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An Evolving Experiment In Bourbon Maturation

 

The Orphan Barrel Whiskey Distilling Company, dedicated to releasing limited edition spirits from rare casks discovered in some of the country’s finest whiskey cellars. Orphan Barrel has brought you Lost Prophet, Barterhouse, Old Blowhard, The Gifted Horse, Forged Oak, Rhetoric 20 & 21.  And now Orphan Barrel has come out with its eighth release, Orphan Barrel Rhetoric 22-Year-Old, a 90.4 proof bourbon.

Rhetoric 22Orphan Barrel Rhetoric 22 continues the slow march of this series set to culminate in the debut of a 25-year-old in 2019. If you are not familiar with Rhetoric, its stocks were said to be found “in the old Stitzel-Weller Warehouses in Louisville, Ky. The whiskey was distilled between 1990–1993 at the Bernheim Distillery located at the historic 17 and Breckenridge in Louisville, Ky. Its mash bill is 86%  corn, 8% barley and 6% rye.

Each sip of Rhetoric 22 starts with a smoky, leathery nose and tastes of toasted oak dark chocolate with ripe banana and spices of clove and anise. The finish is long and woody ending with dark chocolate notes.

According to Diageo, Rhetoric is an experiment in how barrel maturation imparts a lasting impression year after year. Each new year results in an older and wiser limited release from remaining maturing stock. A conversation piece if there ever was one.

Reserve your bottle with us and let us know your thoughts of the new Rhetoric in the comments!

The Rebirth of Yellowstone

In 2010, the seventh-generation distillers Paul and Steve Beam founded Limestone Branch Distillery with the intention of crafting the finest whiskey. Yellowstone is one of the older yellowstone-selectbourbon brands, dating back to 1872, the year its namesake national park was founded. Minor Case Beam, Paul & Steve’s great-grandfater was the original owner of the Yellowstone brand.

The first bourbon they released was Yellowstone Limited Edition. And now, they proudly present the 93 proof Yellowstone Select. The Beams selected, blended, and bottled barrels of 4 and 7-year-old of sweet, spicy, and smoky bourbons for this expression. Each was selected to give this exclusive whiskey a taste that celebrates its deep, family origins.

Tasting Notes:

  • Appearance: Deep, golden chestnut.
  • Nose: Leather and dried fruit with a slight hint of citrus and smoky oak.
  • Palate: Spicy rye with a whisper of dried cherries fading to smoked caramel.
  • Finish: A memorable finish, rich with brown sugar and Kentucky tradition

This is an easy-drinking bourbon with a well-balanced flavor profile that also works well in cocktails. Grab your bottle at your favorite Payless location or reserve a bottle today!

Stranahan’s Private Label

Founded in 2004, Stranahan’s is the first modern microdistillery to legally make whiskey in Colorado, and the state’s first legal distillery since prohibition.

Stranahan’s is a straight whiskey and like bourbon, is aged in new number 3 charred oak barrels. The final whiskey is a blend of 2, 3 and 5 year-old whiskeys and cut with water IMG_0025sourced from the Eldorado spring outside Boulder. Stranahan’s is distilled from a 100% malt barley base grain – the first to ever do this. And Stranahan’s is different than most all mid-west (Kentucky) bourbons. You will taste the difference the western grains bring to this bourbon.

Typically when a distiller bottles his whiskey, several hundred or even several thousand barrels are combined for a staunchly uniform taste. At Stranahan’s, they select ten to twenty of our choicest barrels, and combine them for a small batch with a reliable, yet distinctive flavor unique to Stranahan’s Colorado Whiskey. Each barrel is bottled by hand, with each label hand-signed by the distiller. The bottling process is done by volunteers.

And Payless was fortunate enough to get to select our own Private Barrel. We gathered a committee and sampled several barrels to create our own unique bottle.  Here are the tasting notes of our barrel:

Nose:  Malt & barley, oak, some IMG_0024brown sugar with a hint of toffee and spice.

Taste:  Malt & Barley, almost cereal like hit first, with some brown sugar sweetness.  Quickly oak wood enters in the middle, with some subtle hints of dried fruit.  A smooth thickness coats your mouth, leaving you with some nice cinnamon-clove spice, with a vanilla-caramel flavor entering at the end.

Finish:  A spicy malt flavor lingers a bit on the tongue, longer than most, to remind you that you have just had something unique.

Our Stranahan’s Private Label will be rolling out to all stores soon. And you can always reserve a bottle using our contact us form. Cheers!

Maker’s Mark Private Barrel Program

Maker’s Mark was born in 1954 when T. William “Bill” Samuels Sr. purchased Burks Distillery in Loretto Kentucky. For the next 52 years, they pretty much stuck to the original recipe, occasionally releasing higher proof variations. But in 2010, as Bill Samuels Jr. was retiring, the idea of “I’ve spent my whole career not screwing up mom and dad’s whiskey, how do I leave this industry and not do something on my own” bothered him. And thus, Maker’s 46 was born.

PL-MakersMark-(500x500)Maker’s 46 went through 124 experiments with Independent Stave Company (ISC) before they finally settled on a process that required 10, one-inch thick toasted French oak staves to be inserted into a barrel that originally housed Maker’s Mark.  The barrel is then refilled with mature Maker’s Mark were it will age another nine weeks. This amplified the baking spices, especially the cinnamon and vanilla flavors that are already present in Maker’s Mark. And because no unnatural agents are added and the special staves are from oak, the product is still a Bourbon.

When Maker’s started looking at doing a barrel selection program, they opted to put12694504_10153915529129287_4372940464238325333_o together a program that allowed buyers to build their own unique barrel of Bourbon, similar to the experiments they went through for Maker’s 46. And Payless was very fortunate to be given the opportunity to get the 28th Barrel from the Maker’s Private Select Barrel program.

The Maker’s Barrel program is unlike no other. Instead of sampling bourbon direct from barrels and choosing which barrel we preferred the taste of, you choose 10 oak staves in various combinations and let them age an additional 9 weeks in a barrel of Maker’s Mark. These staves alter the flavor profile so you get a unique barrel of Maker’s. Even though we could use the Maker’s 46 staves, we wanted ours to be different from and our committee of 7 chose not to.

12710888_10153920467969287_7072899678516676334_oWe did have an American oak stave, baked oak, which allows vanilla and some sweetness to the bourbon. Then we used a combination of seared French Cuvee, and toasted French spice to allow flavors of butterscotch, caramel, fruits and spice.  The roasted French mocha stave allows this Maker’s to have a lasting finish with hints of dark chocolate and coffee.

 

12657156_10153915951694287_7311399180532579803_oThis is a unique barrel of Maker’s and your opportunity to taste is June 18th at the Greenwood Store by the Mall. Come have a sample and we are sure you will want to pick up a bottle or 2.