High West - American Prairie Bourbon:


Nose: Corn, alcohol and a little bit of floral something. It also had some bready scents going on. Palate: For some reason, my first sip reminded me of Jim Beam….which is odd, because I haven’t had a Beam in quite some time. The second sip brought out some rye spice and pepper. A third sip, some time later, brought out some hints of sweetness…maybe cherry? This is pretty smooth with a very light mouthfeel. The finish is rather short and not very distinctive. It isn’t hot nor harsh and the finish is only a tad bit warm. Very drinkable. After letting it sit for a long time, it seemed to open up a bit, so I’d recommend you pour this one and let it sit a while before tasting. Comments: This clocks in at 92 proof. Quite frankly, you wouldn’t guess it. It isn’t bad but I’d class this in the “meh” category. Not that I didn’t like or enjoy it, but it doesn’t have a whole lot going on and there’s certainly nothing distinctive that makes it stand out enough to want to immediately go out to get a bottle. Maybe I just wasn’t in the mood for it today. If someone offered me a glass and then asked me if I wanted another when I finished it, I wouldn’t turn it down…..unless maybe there was another choice. I find High West to be an interesting distillery. They, unlike most, are really “hit or miss”. I really, REALLY like their Double Rye but they also put out an oat whiskey a while back that I really don’t like and is one of the weirdest whiskies I’ve ever had. I give them credit for trying new stuff and for being a little bit different than everyone else. Some of their limited release stuff has been pretty good, but, as with most, expensive. This American Prairie Bourbon, while not all that noteworthy, is distinctive because it doesn’t taste like anything else I can remember. One reviewer indicates that this bourbon is a blend of LDI (6 yr old - 75% corn, 20% rye, 5% barley) and Four Roses (10 yr old - 60% corn, 35% rye, 5% barley). Another reviewer states that it is a blend of three whiskeys (2 yr old bourbon from MGP/LDI (75% corn, 20% rye, 5% barley), a 6 yr old KY bourbon (not further identified) and a 13 yr old KY bourbon (also not further identified)). On the High West website, they state this: "75% corn, 21% rye, 4% barley malt from MGP; 84% corn, 8% rye, 8% malted barley from undisclosed source; Other whiskey components are undisclosed due to contractual reasons." High West also reportedly donates 10% of their profits from each bottle to the American Prairie Foundation, which is building the largest wildlife reserve in the lower 48 states. So, kudos to them for giving a shit. Last note: I’ve had this bottle for some time, so it is quite possible that their current version is quite different. I’m also curious to know if they are still sourcing their juice or if they’ve started bottling JUST their own.