Yesterday, just days before Christmas, three wise men rode into the parking lot of the K&L storage warehouse, guided there by a bright light in the sky. They had heard about a shortage of great whiskey on our shelves and had ridden thousands of miles to bring gifts for one retailer; one they had heard would save mankind from its Bourbon drought. There would be no frankincense, gold, or myrrh in these gifts – los regalos de los tres Magos. Instead, three barrels of incredible Bourbon from one of the best distilleries in the world: Four Roses. The gifts of the Magi will not last long. They can only feed so many mouths, unlike the loaves and fish.
I thought we were done for the holiday season with new alerts, but the guys in Kentucky really got things done quickly after our visit this past October. That’s why we’re about to repeat our (now annual?) “Three Gifts of the Magi” –three fantastic new barrels that have arrived just in time for Xmas!
Three barrels of Four Roses have arrived, tasted by our spirits department at the distillery, directly from the Cox warehouse facility with Jim Rutledge himself. To make matters confusing, we ended up picking three fantastic barrels of the same Four Roses formula (OBSO), when there were ten different recipes to choose from. We couldn't help it--our palates were simply drawn to the bold, woody flavors of that whiskey.
Four Roses K&L Exclusive Single Barrel OBSO (BN 4-1H) Cask Strength Bourbon $59.99 - This eleven year, one month old barrel--being the oldest--is the richest and sweetest of the three. It brings the sweet vanilla and the baking spices in waves. A solid cask that should sell quickly given the provenance, age, and the quality. Really good stuff.
Four Roses K&L Exclusive Single Barrel OBSO (US 55-1P) Cask Strength Bourbon $59.99 - This nine year, eleven month old cask managed to proof itself down to a respectable 53.5 percent and starts off with a red-fruited flavor before immediately headed into the more herbaceous and peppery realm. Pencil shavings and old fashioned Bourbon goodness on the finish bring the experience to satisfying climax. This is a punchy little whiskey that sticks to the tried and tested flavors of American Bourbon and does it very, very well.
Four Roses K&L Exclusive Single Barrel OBSO (US 59-6M) Cask Strength Bourbon $59.99 - This 10 year old (on the nose) cask of Four Roses bursts right off the bat with high-toned cinnamon and baking spices, before moving into more of a rye-based flavor. The high proof overpowers a bit of the nuance on the finish, so make sure to add a drop of water. On the nose, there are aromas of heavily toasted oak and pencil shavings. This whiskey was simply made for ice cubes or high-end Manhattans.