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Four Roses - Single Barrel - Barrel Strength (Barrel No. 36-3N/Warehouse EN) (OBSV)

Nose: This has a rather light, “classic bourbon” scent with a decent amount of citrus, especially orange notes. Palate: The first sip has a pretty decent amount of heat, but it builds slowly, rather than slaps you in the face. The mouthfeel is on the lighter, watery side. The finish is long and keeps the heat going well into the swallow. You particularly feel the heat on the tongue for a long time. The second sip tones the heat a tad bit, but it is still there. It isn’t harsh or burning. Its warmth lasts a while. The flavors I picked up on include rye spiciness with some honey, pear and a little bit of the orange from the nose. The finish heat comes across as a cinnamon based heat. Once the glass sat for a while, the more classic flavors of caramel and vanilla seemed to increase. This glass was nice at the start and just kept getting better. Comments: This is 114.8 proof. This bottle was selected by the folks at a local liquor store (who pick well) and was in the $60 range. It was barreled in 2007 and bottled in 2016 (9 years, 4 months old). The recipe designation is OBSV. The mashbill info on the bottle indicates it is 35% rye. The “O” means it was distilled at Four Roses in Lawrenceburg, KY. The “B” indicates it is their “B” mashbill, which is 60% corn, 35% rye and 5% malted barley. The “S” means it is a Straight Bourbon and the “V” indicates that the yeast used was their “Delicate Fruit” variety. I didn’t get nearly as much rye in this as I would expect for 35% in the mashbill. And, what rye is there is nicely balanced with the fruity tones that bring out a lighter sweetness. I usually prefer a thicker, chewier sweetness, but quite frankly, on a hot summer day, this is much easier to drink. This is best enjoyed as a slow sipper. Take your time with it and I think you’ll be rewarded. Lastly, because Four Roses has so much variety, if you enjoy this but the heat is a bit much, there is bound to be a lesser proof version pretty close to it out there.

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