Whisky Advocate

Review: Elijah Craig Barrel No. 3735 20 year old

November 11th, 2011

Elijah Craig Barrel No. 3735 20 year old, 45%, $150

From one barrel, and only sold in one location, but well worth the effort to procure a bottle. Nutty toffee, pecan pie, apricot, berried jam, and nougat, peppered with cinnamon, mint, cocoa, and tobacco. Warming, with polished leather and dried spice on the finish.  Seamless, richly textured, and impeccably balanced. (Exclusive to the Bourbon Heritage Center at the Heaven Hill distillery in Bardstown, KY.)

Advanced Whisky Advocate magazine rating: 96

19 Responses to “Review: Elijah Craig Barrel No. 3735 20 year old”

  1. lawschooldrunk says:

    Wow! What a rating from John!

  2. Annie says:

    Well this description actually makes my mouth water! What a shame it’s unattainable! AHH well, glad you were able to savor this one!

    • Jason Beatty says:

      I can pick you, or anyone else, up a bottle the next time I go down there, which should not be more than a month or sooner. I can then send it to ya. I am going to get another bottle because it is way worth it. One of my friends said he preferred the 18 year more and it’s nice to see that someone else agrees with my perspective. I was beginning to wonder if it really was over aged because of the fact it is not in circulation, but those flavors John mentioned is exactly what made me feel the year was perfect.

  3. John Parker says:

    Do they still have these for sale in Bardstown, KY???? Or will they be gone, I’m going to Louisville next week and will swing by Heavenly Hill.

    • John Hansell says:

      John, you could contact the visitor center and have them hold a bottle for you. Make sure it’s the same barrel number.

      • Jason Beatty says:

        Good call on the barrel number because they do have many of this version, which is for the 20 year anniversary, and another bottle which he did not review. I have already finished this bottle, and his rating is dead on because it is just a hair short of the golden anniversary of Parker’s Heritage. While inside one of Heaven Hill’s new warehouses, I was given 20 minutes to drink as much as I wanted of this and the new Parker’s Heritage, and stuck with the 20 year. This is actually better than even the $500 William Heaven Hill as well. While at the Heritage Center, which still had the bottles as of a week ago, try to get a bottle of the Elijah Craig Single Barrel 2000 vintage, one that is out of the sun. This bottle also comes with a nice leather holding bag that’s engraved, and is worth every bit of the money. If you’re going to Louisville on Monday, stop by Bourbons Bistro for the dinner with the master distiller of 4 Roses. Great to see two posts in a row from Heaven Hill!

      • John Parker says:

        Thank you all, I called and they put a bottle aside for me, I will try Bourbon Bistro tomorrow night also, and to top my great weekend off I found a bottle of William Larue Weller yesterday and bought it even though I have 2 put aside, just can’t seem to be able to pass on it, even though the wife rolls her eyes.

        • Jason Beatty says:

          Bring a little of the William Larue Weller with you to the bourbon dinner. I have not tried it yet. I will have 4 bottles of Van Winkle with me that you can try. I will be with my mother, 34 years old, almost bald and a little overweight with big shoulders. Ask them if you could try the golden anniversary once they know you bought the bottle. And, if you can get more of the Weller, I will take a bottle.

  4. Scribe says:

    Just out of curiosity: What’s the highest numerical rating John has ever given something? And anybody remember what it was? Sorry for the tangent… 🙂

  5. Vince says:

    I purchased two bottles of this Elijah Craig 20 year old. I think it is magnificent as well!

  6. OK, this is official. I wil go to Kentucky next summer 🙂


  7. John says:

    Hi John! I’m hoping you might be able to answer this question: I just bought a bottle of Elijah Craig 20 year (currently in transit); the seller tells me the barrel number is 3742. Is it in any way related to this bottling of 3735? And might have had a chance to sample this one too? He also told me this bottling was limited in scope and available only at the distillery.

    • John Hansell says:

      John, 3742 is the cask the replaced the original one with. I have not tried it yet, but hope to soon.

    • Jason Beatty says:

      I’m going there on Saturday and could have picked that up for you for $170 total, tax and shipping. I left a message on the blog stating this.

    • Jason Beatty says:

      If you bought the bottle off Ebay, I did try this barrel and it was exceptional as well. I finished the bottle of the one John reviewed but have not tried the newest offering.

  8. John says:

    Awesome, thanks for the info, John! Needless to say I look forward to reading your thoughts about it. Thank you for all your great work!

  9. […] of you will remember my glowing review (96 rating) of the single barrel of Elijah Craig 20 year old that was produced for the 20th Anniversary of the Kentucky Bourbon Festival and sold only at Heaven […]

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