Barrell Craft Spirits Gold Label Bourbon is a blend of 16- and 17-year-old straight bourbons. Barrels for this release were selected from four different collections: cherry bomb barrels with a rich mouthfeel, nutty oak-forward barrels, high proof and high complexity barrels, and barrels with pronounced milk chocolate notes. The last group underwent a secondary maturation in toasted virgin American oak casks before being added to this intricate and seductive blend.
A classically fruity bourbon, as sixteen years of maturation have produced an array of stewed and dried fruits of kaleidoscopic complexity. The overlay of toasted oak has rounded off all the sharp edges, leaving a soft and gentle profile that belies its high proof.
Appearance: Burnt marmalade.
Nose: The fresh and gentle notes from toasted oak are most obvious, as they add an unexpected dimension with vivid sugar cane, pipe tobacco, and toasted cinnamon. This freshness is contrasted by the earthiness of slate, tar, and cedar smoke. Fruits soon emerge, presenting rhubarb, Rainier cherry and tamarind, before shifting to dried apricot and papaya.
Palate: Candied ginger, marmalade, and northwestern hoppy beer notes speak to a foundational bittersweet profile. These are tempered by an unctuous creaminess, incorporating pina colada, key lime pie, and banana custard. Peach nectar, and cherry jam all contribute to a juicy quality whiskey at its best.
Finish: A bright pop of hibiscus and za’atar quickly yields to the cavalcade of dried and stewed fruits. As that fades some oak spices appear - sassafras, cocoa powder, smoked cinnamon, and incense.
With a few drops of spring water
A bouquet of floral notes erupts from the glass: meadowsweet, elderflower and chamomile in the lead. The palate, on the other hand, develops instead along toasted coconut and curry.