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KCM Spirit Reviews

Saturday, June 16, 2012

Review 64: Booker's Bourbon

Review 64
Booker's Bourbon: 64% abv

Yeah, this isn't a beginner's drink. That 64% is noticeable. Booker's Bourbon is part of Jim Beam's "Small Batch" series, along with Knob Creek, Baker's and Basil Hayden. The name comes from Booker Noe, a recent master distiller of Jim Beam. Why is this bourbon so high in alcohol? It is a cask strength whiskey, which means it was pulled straight from the cask without being watered down. So here's the scoop.

The nose is complex, but burns heavily. One can smell vanilla, butter,brown sugar, caramel, honey, corn, and wheat before any water is added. With the addition of a few teaspoons of water, the nose opens up to reveal more vanilla, some berry sweetness, molasses, maple, and substantially less burn. There is extreme flavor in this bourbon, including brown sugar, molasses, oatmeal, wheat, a soft pre-cookie mix (the kind that has only butter, flour, and shortening in it), caramel, nutmeg, gingerbread, earthy, maple, and oak. After adding water, the taste is more dry, keeping grainy and introducing slight malt, cinnamon, and slight apple, with even some herbal notes on arrival. The finish becomes apparent, keeping several characteristics from the taste. The finish has spicy notes, corn, barley, rye, maple, caramel, malt, with some cream and ginger. After adding water, there is more malt, oatmeal, with the inclusion of allspice, and earthiness. The finish is medium short, which makes this bourbon less than perfect. This is a wonderful statement, and if you can handle the higher percentage alcohol, it's a real pure and flavorful bourbon. Water is highly recommended. 
Score: 9.5/10

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