Whiskey Acres Straight Rye BIB #0031

Who makes it? Whiskey Acres in Dekalb Illinois

Mash Bill Bottle in Bond: 75% rye, 25% yellow dent corn

To be bottled in bond it has be distilled in one distilling season by a single distiller then aged in a Federally bonded warehouse at bottled at 100 proof.

On the nose Erik came away with red wine while Kris and the “D” got more of the baking spices. On the palate Kris said it came in hot and then smoothed out while Erik didn’t get much of burn. Then on the finish Kris and the “D” re-invoked the baking spices with a hint of cinnamon. Erik thought it was heavy with corn on the backend and a little spice

Kris, Erik and the “D” gave it the Whiskey and a Hammock stamp of approval.

How much: This will run you about 60 bucks online if you’re not from Illinois and we’re not so we picked ours up from Seelbach’s ,

Clyde May’s Original Alabama Style and Straight Bourbon #0027

Who makes it? Sourced from Indiana, bottled by Conecuh Ridge Distillery in Auburndale FL. A new 60 acre distillery is being built in Troy Alabama to keep it all in house.

Mash Bill Original Alabama Style: 55% corn, 30% rye, 15% barley

Mash Bill Straight Bourbon Whiskey: 78% corn, 12% Wheat, 10% malted barley

We found out the Clyde May was indeed a real person. A WWII vet who earned the bronze star and purple heart and came back to his farm and started distilling moonshine as a side hustle. He was known for his impeccable standards, making his own stills and priding himself on the quality of his shine. He did some jail time in the 70’s for it but when released went right back to it. He made a “Christmas Whiskey” which was unaged corn shine in a charred barrel with some toasted apple slices that he gave away to family, friends and valued customers. He said it smoothed it out and made it more palatable and this is what is son Kenny May after his death took to make legit. Still not being able to be distilled in Alabama because of Prohibition laws still on the books he had to go to Kentucky where Even Kulsveen from Kentucky Bourbon Distillers and created the juice from the trucked up water and grains to produce the first 4000 bottles of Conecuh Ridge Whiskey. Clyde never sold a bottle legally and is famous for saying that “it’s better to break laws than cut corners”. Today it is the official drink of Alabama and his grandson L.C. May is the brand ambassador.

We started off with the Straight Bourbon coming in at 92 proof/46% abv and right off the rip Erik nosed apples, fruit, heavy alcoholy not an overpowerful ethanol while Kris nosed spice, cinnamon and fruit. Jarrod thought this was sweeter than the Alabama style. On the palate Kris thought it was full bodied, packed with flavor and all around good juice while Erik thought it was more ryey and did not get a lot of grain coming through. For the Alabama style coming in at a little less abv of 42.5%/85 proof Kris could definitely smell the apple especially after a little swirl and agitation, along with a spice. Don’t expect an apple whiskey, it just has a subtle hint that makes it enjoyable. On the palate Kris said it was creamy, with a little spice and smooth. While Erik said it was thick on your tongue. Jarrod said it was tabaccoey, bold and a nice bite at the end. We all agreed that Clyde May’s is a great whiskey and bourbon. Don’t pass it by and definitely pick some up next time you’re at your local liquor store!

Kris gave the Original Alabama Style a 8.0 and Straight Bourbon 8.0

Erik gave gave the Original Alabama Style a 7.8 and Straight Bourbon 8.0

How much: A bottle of Original Alabama Style will run you about 35 dollars and now Costco carrys it! The Straight Bourbon Whiskey is around 40 dollars.

Other products by Clyde May’s – Straight Bourbon 5yr, 110 proof, Special Reserve 110 proof, Cask Strength 12yr, and Straight Rye Whiskey

1792 Small Batch vs. Sweet Wheat #0026

Who makes it? Barton Distillery

Mash Bill Small Batch: 75% corn, 15% rye, 10% barley – it’s technically undisclosed but we found a place that posted it so…

Mash Bill Sweet Wheat: 75% corn, 15% Wheat, 10% malted barley – again undisclosed and this just our guess base on the info above

The Small batch came in at 93.7 proof while Sweet Wheat considerably less at 91.2. Being released from Barton Distillery that has been around since 1879 started by Thomas S. Moore and today is the oldest functioning distillery in Bardstown Kentucky. Interestingly the 1792 line started in 2002 and took it’s name for when Kentucky became a state. Originally it was named Ridgewood Reserve 1792 but Brown Forman was not happy about that because of their Woodford Reserve and then took them to court on the basis that the name was too similar and they won. So, they changed the name to 1792 Ridgemont Reserve and came with an 8 year statement. Still not good enough, they dropped the Ridgemont Reserve, kept 1792 and added Small Batch. They also dropped the age statement. Since then 1792 has made a name for itself and is the flagship premium brand for Barton Distillery. Here are a few other brands they make: Very Old Barton(which shows up in our video) Tom Moore, Kentucky Gentleman, Kentucky Tavern, Zachariah Harris and also made a deal with CostCo to create a Small Batch CostCo bottle for them. At the distillery they have 29 barrel aging warehouses, 22 other buildings, still and the Tom Moore Spring. They did run into a bit of bad luck in March of 2019 when the lost 120,000 gallons of would be bourbon after an equipment failure and half a warehouse collapsed.

Kris thought that on the nose 1792 Small Batch was fruity with a hint of berries, on the finish a little strong with a char oaky flavor. The addition of the ice cube is what it needed and brought more flavors and made it more palatable. Erik to thought it was fruity on the nose but not very oaky on the finish and said it was great and fantastic. Kris was reserving judgement until the Sweet Wheat was opened and on the nose it definitely more subtle. Not as fruity and more sugary. On the finish Kris thought it was sweeter, lighter and you could taste the wheat verse the high rye. Also much smoother. Erik thought just the opposite and thought that Sweet Wheat on the finish was stronger and on the nose agreed it was sweeter. In the end we both picked Sweet Wheat as our favorite but disagreed on whether is was worth a secondary price tag of 100. Kris said that he’d probably shell out the Benjamin where Erik would not especially knowing msrp is 35 and the most he’d pay is 40. In the end we both agreed that we’d keep 1792 in stock in our bar and Kris would be hiding the Sweet Wheat.

Kris gave the Small Batch a 6.5 and Sweet Wheat 7.5

Erik gave Small Batch a 6.5 and Sweet Wheat 6.8

How much: A bottle of 1792 Small Batch is pretty easy to find and usually around 30 dollars but Sweet Wheat is a bit harder to find. MSRP is 35 dollars but you’ll find it on the secondary market for around 100 dollars up to 120.

Other products by 1792: Full Proof, Bottle in Bond, Port Finished, High Rye and a line of Thomas Moore

Whiskey Acres BIB and Blue Popcorn #0025

Who makes it? Whiskey Acres in Dekalb Illinois

Mash Bill Bottle in Bond: 75% yellow dent corn, 15% Soft Red Winter Wheat, 10% malted barley

Mash Bill Blue Popcorn: 75% shaman blue popcorn, 15% Soft Red Winter Wheat, 10% malted barley

Two great bottles by Whiskey Acres, on the nose of the BIB Kris was able to pick up a sour, earthy smell and on the finish is where the wheat showed through. Very different from any of the blind 6 we did in the last review. Erik on the nose said it was sweet and grainy while on the finish it coated your tongue in sweet corn flavors. With the addition of ice, Kris preferred a half skull while Erik would of gone with out. Kris thought that with just a little bit of water it brought out more of the flavors and taming down the 100 proof.

For the Blue Popcorn, Kris right of the nose thought is sweet and buttery, on the palate is where the caramel showed through. Erik didn’t taste a whole lot of difference and that the bottle in bond was sweeter. This is where Kris and Erik had a major difference of opinion and Kris enjoyed the Blue Popcorn better and would of picked that over BIB but Erik chose just the opposite.

Kris gave the BIB a 7.0 and Blue Popcorn a 7.5

Erik gave it 7nd Blue Popcorn a 6.8

The “D” gave both a 9.1

How much: This will run you about 50.00 for BIB and the Blue Popcorn 60 if you can find it. If you find it out in the wild, pick it up cuz it’s sold out online!

Blind Tasting Review of our top 6 review #0024

Who makes it? Chattanooga Whiskey, Hillrock Estates Distiller, Missouri Spirits Distillery(out of business) and Iron Smoke Distillery

This is our 2 year anniversary and we decided to do a blind tasting of our top 6 reviews.

The line up

  1. Joseph Magnus Cigar Blend
  2. Chattanooga Whiskey Straight 91
  3. Missouri Spirits
  4. Chattanooga Whiskey Straight 111
  5. Hillrock Solera Aged Bourbon
  6. Iron Smoke Straight Bourbon Whiskey

Off the get go Kris knew that number 1 was Joseph Magnus, with that heat and complexity it had to be. Erik on the other hand thought it might be Chatt 111. Kris went through and tasted them all first while Erik did a taste and put it on paper.

We talk about what we have learned of the past 2 years, where Kris thinks that finishing plays a very important role and Erik thinks we’ve come along way on nosing and relating the flavors on the finish. Since were talking about the best we decided to which was our least, for Kris, Maker’s Mark didn’t register high on his list while Erik gives Wild Turkey Rare Breed a hard NO and would love to do a “Rare Breed Sucks change my mind”(borrowed from Louder with Crowder) episode, coming to college near you. Erik races ahead and decides to give them all a shooting score to and 111 and Jos A Magnus almost take him out. An OG #whiskeykrew member Gary Elmes drops by and helps set up the tasting to keep it fair but there is one thing he won’t do on camera…

Kris’ list was:
Chatt 111
Chatt 91
Missouri Spirits
Iron Smoke
*Joseph Magnus Cigar Blend

Erik’s list was:
Chatt 91
Chatt 111
Iron Smoke
Jos. Magnus CB

Shooting Score:
Chatt 91
Iron Smoke
Chatt 111
Jos. Magnus CB

1350 Distilling Review #0023 – 5 Bottles!!!

Who makes it? 1350 Distilling, Whiskey is sourced

Mash Bill: The Guardian and Code Four are both 99% Corn, aged 3 years. Leatherneck is a Rye whiskey

Our third mail call from 1350 Distilling included 5 bottles! We put all 5 to the tast test, the Guardian Bourbon is great all around bourbon thats an easy sipper. The Leatherneck has a little more to it, that’s because it’s heavy on the rye and that spice shines through without being overpowering. A cube tames it down and lets more flavor through. Next was the Code Four Cask Strength, this was Kris’s Favorite while Erik preferred the Guardian. The Code Four definitely packs more of a punch coming in at 115 proof and it lets you know it! Good flavor, picks up more with the addition of an icecube. The Five Alarm is Bourbon and Cinnamon, no sugar here. If you’re thinking Fireball then you’ve got it all wrong. Lastly the Gin is interesting since it’s base is made from sugarbeets and 6 other ingredients which one is a closely guarded secret.

How much: from 40- 50$ but for Code Four it’ll run 70$

Phil Bragg retired from the Marines after 27 years of service as a mechanical engineer. Then with wife Kandis and 2 other friends turned his hobby into a business and created 1350 Distilling. 13 stripes and 50 stars, after you know that it will stick with you forever. The center piece is a custom made steam injected still that is shaped like a military round that puts out 100 gallons of distillate. This military themed distillery is high on community and always there for the veterans. We met Phil Bragg in person and took the tour and we’ll never forget it. Had such a great time, can’t wait to do it again.

Old Elk Straight Bourbon Whiskey vs Old Elk Sour Mash

Who makes it? Old Elk

Mash Bill: 51% corn, 34% malted barley, and 15% rye. Sour mash is the same, just different yeast strain experiment.

I already had a bottle of Old Elk Straight Bourbon but my cousin Jason brought down the Old Elk Sour Mash Small Batch.

Me and my cousin both agreed that we like the Sour Mash offering better. While the Straight Bourbon felt it had more heat, definitely got better with the addition of an ice cube. This one also seemed to have more spice to it. The Sour Mash had more of a cherry, chocolate covered cherry, sour taste but much smoother on the finish. We both agreed that even though we both like our whiskies chilled we would rather drink this one straight from the bottle.

How much: the Old Elk Straight bourbon was 70 while the Sour Mash will run you about 80.

Curt Richardson is the one behind Old Elk and also the visionary behind the Otter Box. He worked with MGP and with a specific Master Distiller, Greg Metze. After creating many recipes and mashbills for Old Elk, Curt hired Greg to come work at Old Elk and you now see his signature on all the bottles.

Art of the Spirits

Who makes it? Art of the Spirits

Mash Bill: 1st: Final Run- 90% corn 5% rye 5% malted barley – 2nd: The Originals- 99% Corn 1% malted barley – 3rd: Easy Elegance- 90% rye 5% corn 5% malted barley – 4th: Krule 2B Kind 100% corn

We sit down with Richard Paul the owner/creator of Art of the Spirits and get to taste all four of these amazing bottles. We started with his best and Richard was right Kris and Erik both enjoyed that one the most coming in at 128 proof, with a nose full of spice and the finish of oak and cinnamon. The second was fruity on the nose with cherries and apricots, going down smooth with a little bit of heat that sneaks up on you, pleasantly though. The third spice on the nose again and this time Erik caught a little bit of Earl Gray. The fourth single barrel had a great nose was a little lighter on the palate with caramel at the fore front.

Kris gave it 7

Erik gave it 7.5

How much: This will run you from $200 to 70$ depending on the bottle and which store you find it in.

Richard Paul in 2016 did some research and found that whiskey was going to to be the number one spirit by 2019. He loved all that you could do with whiskey, the elegance, the labeling and since he worked with David Uhl and Danial James he decided put their artwork on the labels.