Archives for : September2018

Four Roses 130th review

One of the most anticipated releases every fall is the Four Roses Limited Edition Small Batch (a.k.a. LE Smb).  Consisting of 3-4 of the 10 Four Roses recipes, with decent aging of those recipes, each LE Smb one comes across with complex flavors that change over time.  I love the fact that you can revisit an LE Small Batch at a later date and it’s totally different but still an outstanding pour.  Last year’s edition in the Fall reminded me of the 2015 LE Small Batch, which stands out to me as possibly the best one ever released.  This years recipe is as follows:

OBSV – 10 year – 30% of the total recipe

OESV – 14 year – 40% of the total recipe

OESK – 16 year – 10% of the total recipe

OBSF – 13 year – 20% of the total recipe

As you can see, the recipe is dominated by V and F, which are the Herbal and Fruit forward yeast strains per Four Roses.  I was very interested to see how the two meshed together.  OESK is also my favorite recipe so having a good bit of age on that part piqued my interest as well.

For starters, it’s got a great nose to it.  Distinct vanilla notes, caramel, butter, deliciousness.  The perfect whiff of bourbon.  I wish they could make candles from this smell.

On the palette It’s peppery and it kind of burned my tongue on the first sip.  It’s 108.4 proof so it’s got a noticeable bite, but good bourbons rarely continue biting after the first sip.  True to form more flavors open up with each sip as I go.  it’s nice and thick, almost like syrup.  Along with a nice spicy, minty, peppery flavor I get an almost fruity flavor, apples or cherry or something.  It gets better each sip and it’s very complex with all the different recipes and ages.

The finish does not last that long, but the sweetness lingers just enough.  Every single Four Roses LE Small Batch I have ever opened did not start out with a very long finish, but even a month later the finish is noticeably longer.  These are the kind of bottles that really benefit from some air.

Overall even with just 2 small pours, I can already tell I love this release.  I really liked the peppery flavor with the fruit flavor, and I know this is going to be one that improves after being opened.  This may be my second favorite LE Small Batch of all time after the 2015, and I can’t wait to get my hands on a bottle.

Buffalo Trace announces 2018 Antique Collection

Some interesting notes:

Eagle Rare is now returning to it’s original proof of 101, as opposed to 90.  This is a very exciting change but also means fewer ER17 bottles than before, and it’s already very hard to find. 

Stagg again is very high this year, should not be hard to track one down.  It is also it’s lowest proof ever.

WLW and Handy are similar.  

Press release notes:


BTD Logo



Change in the Lineup: Eagle Rare 17 Year Old Bourbon will now be 101 proof


FRANKFORT, Franklin County, Ky (Sept. 18, 2018) Fall is upon us, and that means Buffalo Trace Distillery is releasing its annual 2018 Antique Collection of whiskeys. The highly anticipated collection will once again feature five limited-release whiskeys of various ages, recipes and proofs, with one notable change, Eagle Rare 17 Year Old Bourbon will now be 101 proof.  Here’s what else fans can expect:

George T. Stagg

The powerhouse favorite of the Antique Collection, George T. Stagg weighs in at 124.9 proof this year.  Past releases of this uncut and unfiltered bourbon have won many top awards, including last year’s release nabbing a Double Gold Medal at the 2018 San Francisco World Spirits Competition. This year’s release contains bourbon from barrels filled in the spring of 2003. This batch contained 284 barrels, not quite as much as last year’s yield, but still significantly more than the yield from previous years.  Storage location of these barrels varied across warehouses C, H, I, K, P, and Q.  This whiskey tastes of dark chocolate, espresso, and tobacco.

William Larue Weller

The Antique Collection’s uncut, unfiltered, wheated recipe bourbon is William Larue Weller. Previous editions of this wheater have won many accolades, including a Double Gold Medal at the 2018 San Francisco World Spirits Competition and “Bourbon of the Year” by “Jim Murray’s Whisky Bible 2017.”  The 2018 offering was distilled in the winter of 2006 and aged in Warehouses C, I, K, L, M, and Q.  This bourbon registers in at 125.7 proof.  The bold flavors include dried fruit, fig, and caramelized vanilla.

Thomas H. Handy Sazerac Rye

Thomas H. Handy is the uncut and unfiltered straight rye whiskey. “Jim Murray’s Whisky Bible 2018” named previous years’ releases “Best Rye Whiskey with no age statement.”  This year’s Handy was distilled in the spring of 2012; aged in warehouses I and L and weighs in at 128.8 proof.  The flavor profile includes hints of allspice, teaberry, and clove.

Eagle Rare 17 Year Old

This year’s release is going back to its roots with a proof change from the previous 90 proof back to 101 proof, in tribute to the original strength used when the brand was launched in 1974.  This will be a permanent change to the proof for the Eagle Rare 17 year old from this year forward.  The 2018 edition was distilled in the Spring of 2000 and has been spending its time aging on the first, second and fifth floors of Warehouse C.  This bourbon tastes of toasted oak, coffee, spearmint, and butterscotch.

Sazerac Rye 18 Year Old

Last year Sazerac Rye 18 Year Old was named “Best Rye Whiskey Aged 11 Years and Over” by “Jim Murray’s Whisky Bible 2018.”  This 2018 straight rye whiskey release has notable flavors of dark chocolate, tobacco, and cinnamon. The barrels for this whiskey were filled in the spring of 1998.

The Antique Collection was introduced more than a decade ago and has become a cult favorite among whiskey connoisseurs. Since 2000 these whiskeys have garnered numerous awards from such notable publications as Whisky Advocate Magazine, Spirit Journal, and “Jim Murray’s Whisky Bible.”

The 2018 Antique Collection whiskeys will be available in limited quantities starting in late September or early October.  Suggested retail price is $99 each.  For more information visit

About Buffalo Trace Distillery

Buffalo Trace Distillery is an American family-owned company based in Frankfort, Franklin County, Kentucky. The Distillery’s rich tradition dates back to 1773 and includes such legends as E.H. Taylor, Jr., George T. Stagg, Albert B. Blanton, Orville Schupp, and Elmer T. Lee.  Buffalo Trace Distillery is a fully operational Distillery producing bourbon, rye and vodka on site and is a National Historic Landmark as well as is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. The Distillery has won 21 distillery titles since 2000 from such notable publications as Whisky Magazine, Whisky Advocate Magazine and Wine Enthusiast Magazine. Its Col. E. H. Taylor, Jr. Four Grain Bourbon was named World Whiskey of the Year by “Jim Murray’s Whiskey Bible 2018.”  Buffalo Trace Distillery has also garnered more than 500 awards for its wide range of premium whiskies. To learn more about Buffalo Trace Distillery visit  To download images from Buffalo Trace Distillery visit