46% Alcohol by Volume, 92 Proof, Blend of Straight Bourbon Whiskies
I’ve had a like/love relationship with High West whiskies, some that I’ve found were good, and some were really very good—but they didn’t seem consistent. In the early days when they were one of the first “craft” distilleries showing up on the shelves of my favorite store, I gave them a shot purely on the basis of the cool antique looking bottle and real cork stopper. What can I say? Being in advertising for my day job, I’m a sucker for good marketing. When I heard that they were mostly just bottling juice mass-distilled elsewhere (MGP), I started looking around for other good options. Now, they do distill some of their own, and have built a solid reputation for picking the best of what they source from outside. This is rumored to be a mix of 2 year old MGP bourbon, and some 6 and 13 year old high-rye Four Roses. Plus 10% of profits go to saving the American Prairie. (Another good marketing ploy.)
Golden amber with leisurely long legs in no hurry to anywhere.
Cinnamon cloves and wet oak, just a light touch of ethanol.
Stepping up to the watering hole to take a sip, I first experienced some dry straw flavors along with peppermint and spice. A medium length finish faded into soft leather. The mouth feel was modest, not too thick and not too thin. Straight up neat, it presented a very dry profile. Once I added a small bit of ice and water, it opened up to reveal more deep and fruity notes. Some of my favorite peaches (which I love in Four Roses) and a longer finish. In fact, the more I let it sit and breathe the more complex it got, showing some dark cherries and a little orange. By the time it fully developed all it’s flavors, I felt like was sipping on a dark chocolate cherry candy bar sprinkled with orange zest. Needless to say, it improved immensely with time.