Food & Drink

Review: Barrell Gray Label Bourbon, Whiskey, and Seagrass (2021)

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Barrell made its first upmarket strikes in 2018 with what was then referred to as the Barrell Craft Spirits line, a choice of extra-aged, cask power bottlings that represented the cream of the crop from Barrell’s expansive spirits shares. The preliminary lineup included a bourbon, whiskey, and rum providing. We solely acquired the prospect to pattern the bourbon, a bit late in early 2019, sadly. Had we been faster to that pattern, it might have simply made our Prime 10 for the earlier 12 months. So it goes. For the next three years, these bottlings have been considerably inconsistently launched, with solely the bourbon making an annual look. For 2021, nevertheless, Barrell introduced again a trifecta of particular releases, every now dubbed merely Grey Label. The gathering contains one other 15-year-old bourbon, a 24-year-old Canadian whiskey, and, instead of the rum providing from previous years, a 16-year-old model of the exotically completed Seagrass rye whiskey. Ideas comply with.

Barrell Grey Label Bourbon 15 Years Previous (2021) – Just like the earlier Grey Label bourbon releases, the newest is aged a wholesome 15 years and contains bourbons sourced from Indiana, Kentucky, and Tennessee. The aroma kicks off with an uncommon hit of barrel char and damp tobacco earlier than sweetening to peanut brittle, S’mores, and Bananas Foster. It comes throughout a bit powerful and leathery at first however softens with time within the glass. The palate is a bit tight, exhibiting way more oak than the 2018 launch. It’s surprisingly mild bodied, as effectively, with early notes of flat root beer and cinnamon candies. Because the midpalate arrives, issues tackle extra depth with prune, boiled peanuts, and Chai spice. The end is lengthy and drying with oak tannins and extra cola notes that flip briefly to espresso beans and darkish berry jam earlier than fading gently into candy pipe smoke. 100.4 proof. A- / $250 [BUY IT NOW FROM DRIZLY]

Barrell Grey Label Whiskey 24 Years Previous (2021) – Solely the second Grey Label whiskey launch, it is a bottling of Canadian shares that underwent a moderately elaborate ending and mixing regiment that features Oloroso sherry and Armagnac casks. The nostril is instantly vivid and grassy with candy cereals and uncooked honey. There’s a delicate nuttiness, and a fancy layer of fruit notes that alternate from dried berries to golden raisin to pineapple cake. On the palate, issues are silky and wealthy with wood-forward notes of mature oak and coconut husks that give strategy to applesauce and poached pear earlier than a warming and buttery end of rosemary shortbreads, minted syrup, and a contact of lime zest. Vibrant and sophisticated — and laborious to place down. 121.64 proof. A / $250 [BUY IT NOW FROM DRIZLY]

Barrell Grey Label Seagrass 16 Years Previous (2021) – In contrast to the usual Seagrass providing, which incorporates rye whiskeys from a number of American producers, this bottling is totally Canadian whiskey and constituted of three completely different blends, every completed in a separate set of barrels that beforehand held Martinique rum, Madeira, or apricot brandy. The nostril is a bit austere with blunt, grassy notes of dried stone fruit, apple chips, and uncooked sugar. Given the comparative restraint within the aroma, the palate is very large with taste, starting with a burst of candy-sweet jackfruit and apple pie filling, then cascading into candied pineapple, mint tea, and clove-studded orange. The end is lengthy with syrupy confections – candied apple and baklava, amongst others – and a lingering mixture of mulled wine, peach candies, and berry compote. And I believed the usual Seagrass was a taste rollercoaster. 130.82 proof. A- / $250

Barrell Grey Label Whiskey 24 Years Previous (2021)




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