Bourbon goes coastalMay 2nd, 2012
Two different whiskeys (from different producers) are going to hit the market soon. One’s got some smoke in it, and the other has a sea influence.
Let’s talk about the briny one first. I received a call last week from Trey Zoeller, who puts out the Jefferson’s bourbon and rye whiskeys. He told me he’s got a few barrels of “bourbon” that have been in the belly of a ship for nearly four years. One mysteriously leaked (into the mouths of the crew?) but two others survived. A few stories have been written in the press about it already, including this one.
Take a look at the bottle samples in the picture when compared to standard Jefferson’s. It sure looks like all that sloshing around in warm climates accelerated the oak influence. That’s what I call dark! Trey tells me that one of the barrels in particular is distinctively briny. Samples are on their way. I’ll let you know my thoughts after I taste them.
The second whisk(e)y I want to tell you about is called “Campfire,” courtesy of David Perkins over at High West. David is no stranger to creative blending. He’s already put out Bourye (a blend of bourbon and rye) and Son of Bourye (a younger version of the same). The soon to be released “Campfire” throws in some smoky single malt scotch into the mix. Yes, that’s right: a whiskey comprised of bourbon, rye and smoky single malt scotch.
David just bottled this stuff and is debuting it this weekend. (I tasted some “work in progress” samples. The ones I liked most had the least amount of smoky scotch in the mix.) He also plans to have a special version of Campfire (possibly aged in French Oak) to debut at the WhiskyFest New York seminar program in October.
It sure is a fun time to be a whisky drinker. Let’s just hope these whiskeys taste as good as the stories behind them.
Update: Of course, I just received my sample and press release of the Jefferson’s Ocean-Aged Bourbon right after I posted this. Here are some more details:
Price: $90. Number of bottles: only 600 nationally. ABV: 44%. More importantly, how does it taste? Contrary to my fears, not bad! It tastes like an 18 or 20 year old bourbon. Yes, there’s a heavy dose of oak, but there’s also a sweetness to tame some of it. And I do pick up some sea influence in all that oak, toffee and molasses. Definitely worth a look!