Sam Houston American Straight Whiskey

Nose: This definitely has a whiskey smell, but it isn’t “classic bourbon”. Not surprising, since it isn’t labeled as a bourbon. It is a hearty scent with mostly grainy and toasty scents. In later sniffs, it had a nice “clean” smell….without smelling like a cleaning product. Palate: The first sip has a very pleasant sweetness that slowly turns into a very nice warming. The mouthfeel is also very pleasant and it leans to the thicker side. I think this is a great example of how a good whiskey should envelope you and slowly turn up and then turn down the heat. And, in this case, the heat isn’t really all that hot. It really is just a nice pleasant warming. The sweetness from the first sip continues on subsequent sips. It has hints of cherry and other dark fruits, a little bit on honey and some raisin. On very late sips of this, I picked up on a slight rye spiciness. Comments: This is one of those whiskies that I often forget about…..and then kick myself for not having it more often. I’ve had this bottle for quite some time, but because of its location towards the back of the shelf, it doesn’t get pulled out all that often. That’s OK, though, because that makes it a real nice treat. This isn’t a labeled bourbon, but in a blind taste I think most bourbon drinkers would enjoy it. It is small wonder that I like this….it is made in Kentucky. I think this would make a great daily drinker and would encourage non-bourbon whiskey fans who like Jack Daniels or Dickel to give it a shot. You just might be surprised. It clocks it at a nice 86 proof and Total Wine (when they have it) sells it for $26.99, so it is very affordable. At least one Internet source (whose expertise has not been verified), indicates that this may be a blend of bourbon and straight corn whiskey that was aged in used barrels. It speculates that the bourbon was sourced from Heaven Hill. I would not be surprised if this is true.