FEW Spirits is a relatively new distillery based in Evanston, Illinois, on the outskirts of Chicago. They are producing a rather sizeable range of popular spirits, from bourbon and rye whiskey to aged and non-aged gins and also a grappa. Most things come as cask strength and ‘watered down’ versions, so they’re sure to give you enough choice between things.
I had heard good things about the distillery when Billy wrote a blog post about it at The Whisky Exchange’s blog, and I think the guys at Master of Malt are fans too. Anyway, more than enough reason to pick up a bottle for the bottle-share, methinks.
The mashbills used for this bourbon contains no wheat, so only corn, rye and some malted barley which comes in handy for fermentation. The cask strength version is bottled at a whopping 61.5% ABV. Add that this is a very young spirit, and you know you’re in for quite a fiery ride.
That it’s young and spirity is clear right away. Unlike the Leviathan from a couple of days ago, this youthfulness and spirit is not that bad. It’s ridiculously sharp, but in a way that is very interesting and warrants further exploration. Anyway, I even get some forest fruit (raspberry and black berry). Some shoe polish and quite a lot of rye too. Very promising.
It’s sharp. This’ll wake you up no matter what the hour is. The alcohol makes it very drying, and on the palate there is oak, corn, fruit and leather.
It does mellow rather quickly, the surprising fruitiness stays for a while longer. Old furniture with wood and leather polish.
On the nose I said ‘promising’. I think this whiskey will definetly improve with some extra time in the cask, but it doesn’t feel like an unfinished product at the moment either. It might even be that this whiskey’s strength lies in its youthfulness.
While it’s not my favourite whiskey of the year, not even of the bottle-share, it is one of the more interesting ones!
FEW Bourbon, Cask Strength, 61.5%, samples available at Master of Malt at £ 4.39