The Return of Tom's Foolery (w/Rye & Applejack!)

We're having a heatwave in California this week, so it's time to sit outside, crack open a bottle of whiskey, and enjoy the last real month of warm weather while it lasts. If you're having a good old fashioned American BBQ this week to celebrate summer's last hurrah, then maybe you'll want to enjoy some good old fashioned, bottled-in-bond American hooch. After blowing through our initial batch of Tom's Foolery Bonded Bourbon, we're back with a new batch and two additional expressions: a bonded rye and applejack, to boot! David OG has been working his Ohio connections to bring you this little deal, and I've been anxiously awaiting their arrival. I was a huge fan of the first Bourbon batch, so I can't wait to sink my teeth into these puppies! David's notes are below:

Tom's Foolery Bottled In Bond Batch #3 Ohio Straight Bourbon Whiskey $49.99 - Tom Herbruck is an unassuming gentleman with a solid career and a  beautiful family. He's also a man with a secret. In the shed behind his house sit hundreds of barrels of whiskey. In 2011, he purchased the historic Michter's Jug House Pot Stills and began producing what many consider to some of the finest craft whiskey on the market. In early 2016, K&L was lucky enough to connect with Tom & Lianne Herbruck to secure the first batch of his newly minted Bottled in Bond Bourbon. Truly a culmination in the Craft Whiskey revolution, Tom's new BIB is easily the best craft bourbon we've ever tasted at any price point. The big bold pot still bourbon is unlike anything else on the market even from the finest Kentucky distillers. Powerful notes of fresh oak, stone fruits, and dense grain open to a playful palate of caramelized fruit and pointed evergreen. The finish is long and full with cocoa and dark smoked woods. Oily, rich and long. It doesn't have the sweetness of the Kentucky bourbons, but definitely matches the complexity. It feels like a whiskey from a time long forgotten and so it is. Only a tiny amount of this small batch made it way out west and we're the exclusive supplier for CA. Tom's third batch of Bonded Bourbon is a blend of two casks over 4 years old. One is a high corn (75% Yellow Dent, 13% Winter Rye, 12% 6 Row Barley) and the other a very unusual high rye bourbon (51% Yellow Dent, 32% Winter Rye, 8% Malted Winter Rye, and 8% Wheat).

Tom's Foolery Bottled in Bond Batch #1 Ohio Straight Applejack $54.99 - Tom Herbruck is a pretty laid back guy. But one thing he takes very seriously is Applejack. Produced from locally sourced cider in small batches just like it would have by the pioneers 200 years ago, this Applejack is truly a handmade specialty of the region. To the small amounts of locally pressed fresh cider that Tom can source he adds a certain amount of hand-pressed crabapple cider. This was the tradition in Ohio and so it continues. The sweet cider is left to ferment naturally and takes at least three weeks before the natural sugars are completely converted to alcohol. This hard cider is then double distilled in copper pot stills before being aged in a variety of different barrels. The first batch of Tom's Bottled in Bond Applejack was aged entirely in a single ex-cognac with a #3 char. 75.5 gallons of brandy entered the barrel at 118 proof and aged for four years and three months resulting in less than 370 bottles for the batch. The flavors are distinct and vibrant with tons of apple and spice on the nose. The palate is rich and viscous with plenty of fruitiness to balance the french oak component. One of the finest American apple brandies we've ever tasted. Only 30 cases were made available for California.

Tom's Foolery Bottled In Bond Single Barrel #90 Ohio Straight Rye Whiskey $49.99 - Our first single barrel with the exceptional Ohio craft distillery also happens to be their second ever batch of Bottled in Bond Rye. This special little cask of rye was distilled on Monday May 21st, 2012 from a mash bill of 64% Rye, 11% Malted Rye, 22% Yellow Dent, and 3% Malted 2 Row Barley. Fermented without the addition of any enzymes on the grains in their old Cypress fermenter, it was distilled to 108.9 proof before barreling. During those four long years of aging nearly 20% of the barrel evaporated and the proof rose to 112. We decided that it tasted best at 100 proof and so Tom slowly lowered the proof for their bottled in bond label. Fabulously complex and driven by that spicy rye and earthy malt. Expect a robust mint nose with bready grain and toasty oak. The palate is unctuous and relatively oily with those big dry rye spices upfront and some sweet fruit coming through on the finish. Of course, this little guy won't last long, so have at it while you can.

-David Driscoll

David Driscoll