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Jack Daniels Master Distiller Series No.2 with Luke

Jack Daniels Master Distiller Series No.2 with JD SBBP and Luke!
We met a fellow whiskey enthusiast at a couple of our events named Luke Gardner. He said he has a few special bottles he’s been holding onto and he’d love to hang and review one of them. Well, Luke brought both and let us choose. Jess Motlow was our choice so we get into a little bit of history of Jess, what he did for Jack Daniel’s and how he arguably had the hardest go of it trying to Jack Daniel’s through prohibition, which he did. Then we get on with the tasting, not a bad pour, went down smooth but dissipated quickly. Kris brought a surprise in the new #whiskeyventure back pack, a bottle of JD Single Barrel Barrel Proof just to see how it would match up.

Jack Daniels Master Distiller Series No.2 w/ Luke!

Who makes it? Jack Daniel’s

Mashbill: 80% corn, 12% barley, and 8% rye

Where it’s from: Lynchburg, Tennessee

When it Started: 2012

We met Luke at a few of our events, being a fellow whiskey enthusiast he offered one of prized bottles for a review. We took him up on it and Luke dropped by with 2 bottles from the Jack Daniel’s Master Distiller Series. Jess Motlow the second distiller was chosen plus Kris had a surprise in his #whiskeyventure backpack.

A little background, Jack Daniel passed away in 1991 and left the distillery to his two nephews Lem Motlow and Richard Daniel. Lem bought out Richards interest and was more interested in running the company so he put his brother Jess in charge of the distilling. The brothers made it through World War I, Prohibition(being one of the few that a medical license to distill and sell whiskey, and WWII. Lem died in 1947 and his brother Jess retired soon after. The company then went to Lem’s 4 sons that held onto the company for 9 years and then sold it to Brown-Forman for 20 million dollars!

Popping it open, it was easy on the nose. A little heat for Kris with a little sweetness to it. Erik said it didn’t smell like Jack and actually nosed like a good bourbon. On the finish Kris said that for an 86 proof whiskey he could feel the bite but dissipated quickly. Erik thought it was hotter than expected and thought the same that the flavor went away quickly. Luke was pleasantly surprised and found it refreshing. He liked that fact that the finish went away quick because he was ready for another sip faster.

Adding the ice smoothed it out some and brought the sweet flavors, where Erik got a maple flavor and Luke could taste honey. Kris felt it definitely brought the sweetness and could taste a little more of the char.

All in all it was a decent bottle and for 40 bucks but if you check the net you’ll find it all over the price scale. From 60 dollars on up to 400!

Iron Smoke Flash Review with Tiffany at the Jefe Boutique Cigar Event and Carlos from Monte DeLeon

Who makes it? Iron Smoke Distilley

Mashbill: 53% corn, apple wood smoked wheat, barley and just a slap tickle of rye!

Where it’s from: Fairport, NY

When it Started: 2013

We were invited to come down and hang with Monte DeLeon at the Jefe Boutique Cigar, Whiskey and Wine event in Eola Park, Orlando.

Started to rain while we were setting up then a special guest arrived! Tiffany from Iron Smoke Whiskey dropped in, had some bottles so we decided to shoot a flash review on the spot!

The first bottle was one of our favorites the flagship Iron Smoke Bourbon. Always a great pour plus it doesn’t hurt that it’s the highest rated bourbon in Jim Murray’s Whiskey Bible coming in at 95.5 out of 100. One of the things we like about this is how they smoke their wheat with apple wood for a subtle flavor that really comes through.

Next up was Rattlesnake Rosie’s Apple Pie Bourbon, WOW does that hit all the right notes with apple, cinnamon, nutmeg and you can almost taste the crust! All natural ingredients, that’s why they call these elixirs and not liqueurs.

Last was something special that Tiffany brought just for us. A new addition to the Rattlesnake Rosie line up, the Chocolate Peanutbutter Pie Bourbon. So dangerous because you don’t taste the alcohol! This would be great in a chocolate martini!

In the end it was a great event, loved hanging out with Monte DeLeon Cigars and huge thanks to Tiffany for stopping by, hanging out and shooting the flash review with us. Love her energy! Can’t wait for the next event!

Iron Smoke Flash Review with Tiffany at the Jefe Boutique Cigar Event

We’re bringing Ingrid from Whistlepig Whiskey to Island Girl Cigar Bar in Fleming Island for a tasting and cigar pairing. You’ll be able Headed down to the Jefe Boutique Cigar, Whiskey and Wine event at Lake Eola Park in Orlando, FL with our good friends Monte DeLeon Cigars. They brought their kick ass traveling cigar lounge! Then Tiffany from Iron Smoke dropped by with a few bottles and we decided to to do flash review on the spot. Started off with their flagship Iron Smoke Bourbon which they smoke their wheat with apple wood to give it a unique flavor. Then we moved on to their elixirs. First up was Rattlesnake Rosie’s Apple Pie and we had to shake the snake. Finally was Rosie’s Chocolate Peanut Butter Pie Bourbon that went perfectly with Carlos’ El Capitan Cigar. We already big fans of Iron Smoke and Rosie is the desert after the bourbon! Huge thanks to Tiffany for stopping by, her energy is amazing! Comment, like, subscribe and shake the snake!

Whistlepig/Limavadi Tasting and Cigar Pairing

We’re bringing Ingrid from Whistlepig Whiskey to Island Girl Cigar Bar in Fleming Island for a tasting and cigar pairing. You’ll be able to sample their incredible line up along with Limavady Irish Whiskey. We’ll have a couple of cigars that will compliment what you’re tasting or feel free to browse their full walk in humidor selection!

Plus, special guest and local cigar owners Monte DeLeon Cigars will be there with a few sticks to pair up to the rye and Irish Whiskey.

Calumet 8,14,15yr and Sam Houston 15yr with Dan

Calumet 8,14,15yr and Sam Houston with Dan

Dan from North Point Bar came down to visit and brought along a bottle of Calumet 8yr. On a previous #whiskeyventure Kris stopped by the Dan’s private bar that he hand crafted, fully stocked with full size cooler behind the bar. The real deal. Anyway, Dan made it down to Florida and we decided to review the Calumet 8yr he brought, what he didn’t know is that Kris pulled three more bottles out of his #whiskeyventure Back Pack! A Calumet 14thr, and 2 unopened bottles. One Calumet 15yr and Sam Houston 15yr. We learned they all came from the same place, Western Spirits Beverage Company. Watch the review and see what other spirits they carry.

We had a great time? Surprisingly all 4 were very different. While Erik and Dan agreed that Calumet 8 was a great easy sipper, Kris enjoyed each one along the stage more and more. Kris was the only one that enjoyed the spicy Calumet 15yr and put it above the 14. Erik and Dan were not fans, that’s for sure! I think the clear favorite was the Sam Houston 15yr. Not easy to find but definitely recommend picking it up if you see it!

Oceanside Distillery with Owner/Distiller Ron Folino

We made a trip down to Cape Canaveral and visited Oceanside Distillery. Ron Folino, owner and distiller does a flash review of his double bourbon and gives us the low down on all their spirits. They are one of the few distilleries that carry the fresh from Florida on their label and check out how Ron the mad scientist makes all of his spirit concoctions. Plus, Ron generously donated a bottle of their signature bourbon for our #whiskeyventure Back Pack that we are auctioning off at Jax Bourbon Social. To top it all off, we were in time to catch Chase Harvey who was performing at Oceanside and he definitely set the drinking mood!

Calumet 8,14,15yr and Sam Houston 15yr with Dan

Who makes it? Bardstown Bourbon Co. since 2017

Mashbill: 74% corn, 18% rye, 8% malted barley

Where it’s from: Lexington, Kentucky

Distributed by: Western Spirits Beverage Company

When it Started: 2013

There’s a little history there… Calumet started out as baking powder in the 1924 and made a fortune by William Monroe Wright in Lexington Kentucky. His son Warren got into horse racing and built out there estate to train horses. They ended up producing 2 Triple Crown Winners, 8 Kentucky Derby winners and 11 of their horses ended up in the National Museum of Racing Hall of Fame. In 1947 they earned over a Million dollars from winning performances and stakes wins.

Western Spirits Beverage Company has the Calumet Farm Bourbon under it’s belt as well as Sam Houston, Bird Dog, and Lexington Bourbon Whiskey.

Starting with Calumet 8 at 90 proof, Kris on the nose could smell the heat, slightly sweet while Erik found the same and Dan said it tickled his nose hairs! Kris was surprised on the lingering finish, easy and smooth. Erik could taste the heat but it was good while Dan thought is was smooth and easy drinking. After adding ice, Kris got notes of cherry and definitely brought out the flavors and sweetened it up. Erik picked up the sweet, dark cherries and caramel. Dan said it dampened the fire and he may be odd because he doesn’t taste fruit in whiskies, only in cognac.

Calumet 14 was next and Kris already sampled this before but on the nose brought more spice and more heat. Coming in at 96.2 proof. For Erik, he could smell rubber cement and ethanol. The taste Kris said the spice really came through while Erik said it hit pretty hard. Dan could feel the heat as well. After adding ice it mellowed out and Dan said it took some flavor away but left all the spice.

Calumet 15yr was next clocking in at 105 proof and Kris did not expect that it would be much different than the 14 but he was wrong. On the nose more force notes pushed through and Kris could tell the difference and more spice and a long long finish. Erik could smell rubber cement again, on the finish he said “this is not my jam” and “it won’t go away” the funk won’t go away. Dan could tell of the nose it was entirely different and the taste the spice hangs on and doesn’t go away. Dan said, “you definitely know you drank somethin!” and good flavor but the spice takes over. Dan didn’t taste the funk but he and Erik were not fans while Kris liked it better than 14 and likened it almost to Wild Turkey Rare Breed.

Sam Houston 15 at 103 proof, lower than Calumet 15 but obviously not discernable. Kris could smell heat and sugar, Erik said it was similar to the rest but much steeper and Dan said it was a real eye opener. On the taste Kris could taste sweet, spicy and a woody aspect. Erik for the taste got candied pecans and Dan could taste a lot of things but it was hard to identify any of it but really like the flavor and the spices

Kris ranking: Erik ranking: Dan ranking: 8yr -6.5 -7 -6.5 14yr – 7 – 6 – 5 15yr – 7.5 -0 – 4 Sam Houston – 8 -7.5 -8

To wrap it all up, we all would pick up the Calumet 8yr. Nice easy sipping with no ice needed but one cube will bring out more flavors. The 14 Erik and Dan would pass up and Kris would pick it up unless the 15 was available. For the 15 only Kris would pick this on up and Sam Houston we all would pick up but this not easy to find so if you see it grab it! Unless they’re charging secondary prices, then that’s on you. In pricing the Calumet 8 will run you about $45 dollars, the Calumet 14 goes for around $99 and Calumet 15 about $110. The Sam Houston Kris picked up for $150 but we asked Google and they have it going for $299. Happy Hunting! Cheers!

St. Augustine Distillery Line Up and New Release

Who makes it? St. Augustine Distillery

Mashbill: 60% corn, 22% malted barley, 18% Hard Red Winter Wheat

Where it’s from: St. Augustine, Florida

In this line up we start with the Florida Straight bourbon coming at 88 proof. We taste throgh these bottles with Wll Hensler, the Chief Operating Officer and the VP of Production, Ric DeMontmollin. Will gets a rustic note, cigar box cedar, and chocolate notes and Ric added in cocoa. Kris and Erik found that on the nose was easy, woody with a sweetness to it. On to the taste with ripe red fruit, a little nuttiness with a little bit of that chocolate making an appearance. For it being a wheat forward bourbon Kris definitely thought it had a more robust flavor which the 22% barley contributes to. Most often times wheated bourbons are smooth, softer and on the lighter side. Most bourbons we have tasted stay in the 4-6% malted barley range. Ric says that wheat tends to be more single noted while corn and barley you can get more variance out of. That’s why they decided to go with higher malted barley.

Then we moved onto the Port Finished Bourbon on the nose a little bit of that higher proof came through but this time a bit more fruitier aspect still containing that sweetness. On the finish ripe red fruits, plums, raisins. Will suggests that the Port Finished pairs well with a cigar. Kris thought it had a more subtle flavor but longer on the finish compared to the Straight.

Lastly the Cognac finished. On the nose a lot of leather, tobacco then on the finish Will says he gets Red Velvet cake while Ric thinks flan has prominence. As for Kris and Erik, they thought it dried out the palate but had a solid flavor profile and a long lasting finish and were very impressed.

Ric took some new make right off the still for us to nose and taste coming in at 149 proof, man that’ll get ya if you you’re not ready. Holy smokes! That is brining on the heat!

We pose the question to Ric if there is a right and wrong way to nose and taste. He said there isn’t a wrong way but definitely taste everything and make a mental catalog of those flavors and smells!

Huge thanks to Will and Ric for taking the time and extolling their expertise! This is a limited release that only four French Cognac casks were filled for this finishing and it’s only being sold at the distillery. We highly recommend taking the tour and stopping by the shop afterwards, tasting some samples, support local and buy a bottle or two!