Distiller: Elijah Craig Distilling Co
Whiskey: Elijah Craig Toasted Barrel
Region: Bardstown, Ky
Age: No Age Statement
The Barrel Cellar Score: 88 Points
Review Date: 06/01/2021
About the Bourbon: Elijah Craig’s toasted barrel offering is a version of its small batch bourbon that is finished in a toasted barrel. The bourbon is first aged in typical fashion in a charred barrel, then finished in a toasted one. Toasted means the barrel is heated to a lower temperature for a longer period when compared to other aging barrels. The result is an infusion of different and sometimes stronger flavor notes into the bourbon.
I enjoyed the whiskey for this review using a set of Prestige diamond whiskey glasses.
Nose: Banana bread, burnt sugar, vanilla, and cocoa nibs.
Taste: Fresh mint, cucumber, brown sugar, caramel, nutmeg, peanut, leather, carrot, candied walnut, and oak. Drop a couple cubes in and the oak notes strengthen, while notes of orange citrus and fresh Jalapeño emerge.
Finish: Mid-length on the palate with black pepper spice, toffee, and oak.
Assessment: This bourbon is like being introduced to Elijah Craig’s older brother. It’s bolder, spicier, and more tannic than EC small batch. The toasted barrel brings out a plethora of flavor notes, but spice is front and center here, with only the slightest hint of a sweet note present in the dram. The second barrel, in addition to bringing out spicy flavors, seems to have infused heavy handed notes of oak tannin. The tannic presence results in some bitterness on the palate, and a dryness on the finish that leaves the bourbon feeling a bit out of balance.
The bourbon is priced fairly considering other toasted barrel bourbons on the market, I think however, that I would opt for an Elijah Craig small batch instead of reaching deeper into my pocket to purchase a toasted barrel at a $20 premium.
The Barrel Cellar gives Elijah Craig Toasted Barrel 88 points.
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