A seven year old bourbon from Brooklyn in New York City. When I first read that sentence, my thoughts were “New York my ass, they just sourced it from Heaven Hill or MGP or so. It turns out that it’s not.
The people at the distillery are very proud of their water source, which is the Widow Jane mine in Brooklyn, which is dug in limestone bedrock. Limestone just happens to be the kind of stone the Kentuckyans are proud of and to which they attribute a lot of the greatness of their whiskey.
The distillery also produces a lot of chocolate and chocolate related stuff, since the owner is from the Dominican Republic and sources a lot of organic cocoa beans there.
Anyway, a 7 year old whiskey from a distillery I’ve never heard of. There are quite some surprises left in the world. I thought I’d at least heard the names of distilleries producing whiskey that have been around for a while now. In America that might not be as ‘true’ as in Scotland, since there are so many small distilleries with really limited output…
Gentle and crisp with some slate, sweet corn and a touch of oak. Not as oaky as I expected though. Smooth and rich, but not heavy. Corn bread, some peppermint.
On the palate it’s initially thick before a certain minerally flavor sets in. Slate and chalk, but not metallic. It’s sweet but not overly so. There’s some chili pepper going on, and dry oak. It’s very thick, almost like syrup. Vanilla custard maybe, and this may be suggestive, but the website talks about cherries and I think I agree.
The finish is more typical of bourbon with lots of sweet corn, syrup, oak and a drying feeling on your tongue. The finish isn’t too long, but it’s tasty and that’s what counts.
Cacao Prieto advertises this as a seven year old sipping like a 20 year old. I disagree since this is by no means as woody as those ‘over aged’ bourbons are. It’s not an overly complex dram, but it is a very good bourbon. While I can’t be sure, it might just be that the minerals on the nose and palate are from the limestone from which the water is drawn.
In short, it’s a very tasty bourbon. Not overly complex, but simply very tasty. I’m positively surprised and I just added a new address to the to-do list if I ever make it to NYC, which has been in a ‘we have to go there with the two of us’-phase for years now. Having kids got in the way.
Widow Jane, 7yo Straight Bourbon Whiskey, 45.5%, Cacao Prieto Distillery. Available at selected retailers in the USA for some $ 50-55. So, it’s not cheap…
Thanks to Shai for the sample!