The tasting of this bourbon was provided courtesy of one of my bourbon drinking buddies. We sampled this together and his review is also included.
Nose: This has a “classic bourbon” scent with a little bit of alcohol and some sweet corn. It isn’t super strong, but it is nice to sniff. Palate: This has a nice oily mouthfeel that invites you to swirl it on your tongue. It has a bit of heat, which kicks in during the finish. It wasn’t a “punch”, it slowly built up. I got some rye spiciness in this and it has nice, chewy, dark chocolate sweetness. It has a fairly long finish with more rye spiciness evident in the finish. This was interesting because the longer it sat, the more the heat seemed to disappear. On later sips, it seemed to almost disappear altogether. [NOTE: After we tasted, we compared notes and I really like my compatriot’s observation of the dryness of the finish. I couldn’t put my finger on it, but when he mentioned it, I realized that that was spot on! Then, when I started my research, I discovered that this is finished in wine barrels, so his observation comparing the dryness to a wine was also spot on!] Comments: This is a special release from 2017. It is 98.6 proof. According to the Blood Oath website, this is a “masterful union of well-bred bourbons. Taking the lead is a far-from-shy, sharp and floral rye, finished in Cabernet Sauvignon barrels for a dry, blackberry and espresso complexity. This, coupled with a well-seasoned, rye bourbon, rich with fragrant vanilla, toasted caramel, oranges and oak.” The deal here is, this is a blend put together by one person, based on his background in the industry. He states that he has no bond to any particular distillery, so he favors none in his sourcing. He also vows never to reveal where the juice came from. They are now up to Pact #6 and, of course, they are all different. Guest Reviewer’s Thoughts: Nose: Floral, light classic bourbon smell which is very inviting. I smell cherries (which I seem to frequently), white wine, candy corn and cotton candy. In later sniffs I got a touch of vanilla and oddly rose petals. Palate: Nice oily mouthfeel that invites you to keep it in your mouth for quite awhile. The first sip had a medium long finish that packed a good amount of heat. I got a touch of rye on this one and some deep chocolate notes. The finish reminded me of a dry wine (which I was able to get off the nose). Later snorts I was able to taste a dark fruit - either dark cherry or maybe blackberry. The strangest thing of course is the finish gets less and less with each snort. By the time the glass is done, the finish is nearly non-existent. Comments: I enjoyed this bourbon and I think it's very good. That said, it is $130. I don't regret getting it at all, but you may want to sample this before committing that kind of dough.
[NOTE: The MSRP on this was $99, but like many limited releases like this, retailers often mark up the price. That said, you’re probably damn lucky if you can find it at the MSRP.]