Eagle Rare ( Single Barrel)


Nose: I get a sweet scent. It seems a bit on the heavier side. It could maybe be described as a bit musty. I also got a little whiff of mint from the Eagle. Secondary sniffs seemed to be lighter. This kinda reminds me of what an empty bourbon barrel smelled like that I purchased for the Flying Aces but ended up not using. Palate: The first sip brought out a heavier flavor. It wasn’t exactly sweet, in my mind. And it seemed, hmmm….denser? Maybe chewier. On a 1-10 sweet scale, I’d say this is right in the middle somewhere. The mouthfeel is nice, also somewhere in the middle of the scale. The finish isn’t harsh or burning. The finish is relatively short, but it does leave an nice aftertaste in the back of the throat that lasts a while. I’m having a hard time with specific flavors because everything blends so well. You just get a overall impression that this is a nice, easy to drink and enjoy, bourbon. Later sips brought out a dryness, which reminded me of a dry wine. Comments: Eagle Rare is 90 proof and is 10 years old (that is, this one is labeled 10 year…..new bottles do NOT have the age statement on them anymore). That said, some single barrel examples purchased by liquor stores an be a bit older than that (11), but I can’t remember if this is one of them. It is no longer labeled Single Barrel because at some point, Buffalo Trace went from hand-bottling to an automated line. When one barrel runs out and they start on another, apparently, there can be some blending of barrels, so they can’t, technically, call it a single barrel. The Mash Bill for ER is believed to be Buffalo Trace Mashbill #1 (which is believed to have less than 10% rye - also reported to be the mash bill for Buffalo Trace, Stagg and Benchmark (the cheaper version of Buffalo Trace I always recommend to people who like Buffalo Trace)). I think that is probably correct, because rye spice is not one of the prominent flavors. You may get a very slight taste of it in later sips, but that’s it. I will say that Eagle Rare is a good value no matter what the bottling. I’ve never had one that wasn’t at least pretty good. This particular “store barreling” is not one of the better ones I’ve had, but it was still a good buy. I will almost always take a store’s barrel over just regular shelf choices of this….mainly because A.) the people picking the barrel USUALLY have pretty good taste, so you’ll end up getting a slightly or much better version of the “regular” stuff 2.) sometimes, the store’s barreling is actually CHEAPER than the regular version (although, not every time).