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Review: Whiskeys of Starlight Distillery: Carl T. Bourbon and Old Rickhouse Whiskeys

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Starlight Distillery in Indiana, simply throughout the Ohio River from Louisville, is likely one of the extra distinctive craft distilleries I’ve encountered. It’s the newest innovation to emerge from Huber’s Orchard, Vineyard, and Vineyards, a 600-acre farm now in its seventh technology. Should you regarded up “agritourism” within the dictionary (keep in mind these?), I think about there’s an image of this place. They develop about all the pieces that may be grown in Indiana soil with a sprawling distillery and vineyard on web site full with a number of tasting rooms, reward outlets, and restaurant (assume Cracker Barrel with some whiskey and wine-themed antiques on the partitions).

Within the mid-Nineties, Huber’s started distilling brandies from their very own vineyards and labored with Indiana legislators to get craft distilling laws handed. By the early 2000s, the farm’s Starlight Distillery was within the brandy enterprise, producing a rainbow of flavors that grew to become wildly profitable with their vineyard and farm patrons. As soon as laws handed permitting for distillation of grain-based spirits, Starlight expanded its liquor manufacturing in 2014 to gin, vodka, and whiskey. Since that point, they’ve produced a dizzying number of whiskeys, to incorporate the usual bourbon, rye, and malt (in bonded, cask energy, and double oaked choices, amongst others) plus a plethora of distinctive barrel finishes. Whereas a number of small batch whiskeys have seen restricted distribution, their single barrel program, which incorporates the choice for partial barrel shares, has made them a darling of whiskey golf equipment huge and small throughout the nation.

On a latest go to, we snagged a small batch bourbon and rye emblematic of what it is best to be capable to discover on retailer cabinets the place Starlight distributes, in addition to a cask energy, single barrel bourbon, and rye extra typical of the non-public picks you may encounter. Ideas comply with.

Starlight Distillery Carl T. Bourbon Whiskey – A novel mix of two completely different mashbills, one 60% corn, 20% rye, and 20% malted barley and the opposite a 4 grain recipe of 51% corn, 20% rye, 20% malted barley, and 9% wheat. Aged at the very least 4 years in 53-gallon new charred American Oak barrels. The aroma is gentle with an ethereal, vanilla bean sweetness. Issues are cereal-forward however not gritty or undercooked, promising extra depth with slightly extra maturity. The palate may be very a lot the identical with candy creamed corn, peanut brittle, and caramel candies. There’s a pleasant steadiness right here and a delicate, even warmth. A little bit of rye spice on the end results in fading notes of orange pulp and brown sugar. Displaying promise however in want of only a bit extra barrel time. 92 proof. Batch #225. B / $35

Starlight Distillery Outdated Rickhouse Rye Whiskey – Constructed from a mashbill of 85% rye and 15% malted barley and aged at the very least 4 years in 53-gallon new charred American oak barrels. The aroma is simple with bready rye spice, grassy dill notes, and a beneficiant caramel sweetness. The natural high quality on the nostril is pretty muted on the palate, changed by baking spice and a peppery heat. The oak is a contact punchy, including some astringency to a mid-palate that dries issues out slightly too early on the end. A traditional rye, strong for cocktailing. 92 proof. Batch #0214. B / $35

Starlight Distillery Rickhouse Choose Bourbon Whiskey Single Barrel – There’s no info on the precise mashbill for this bourbon, simply that it’s constructed from a “candy corn mash” and aged for at the very least 4 years in 53-gallon new charred American oak barrels. It’s bottled non-chill-filtered at cask energy. The upper octane hangs over the aroma with spicy notes of grilled corn, cinnamon toast, and overcooked butterscotch pudding. There’s a little bit of a smoky high quality laced all through that sweetens as issues open within the glass. The palate is punchy with alcohol and a torched sugar sweetness that skews towards citrus with notes of brûléed sugar and flamed orange peel. Just a little water brings out some Bananas Foster and toasted marshmallow. The end is peppery however turns to muddled mint in brief order with a lingering notice of barrel char and sugar cookie. 110.2 proof. Barrel #17262. B+ / $50

Starlight Distillery Outdated Rickhouse Rye Whiskey Single Barrel – Additionally no info on the precise mashbill for this one, simply that it’s “excessive rye.” Once more, this has been aged at the very least 4 years in 53-gallon new charred American oak barrels and bottled with out chill filtration at cask energy. That added alcohol creates a burly character on the nostril that’s much less bready with toasty barrel char and greater barrel notes that evoke Snickerdoodle cookies. The dill is there, nevertheless it’s largely buried below notes of robust black tea and a little bit of pipe smoke. On the palate, there’s a pleasant concord between the barrel and the rye spice with a burst of inexperienced peppercorn, RedHots, and clove chewing gum on the outset that simmers with ample heat right into a lingering end of toffee, cinnamon stick, and toasted oak. 111.6 proof. Barrel #17256. A- / $50

huberwinery.com

Starlight Distillery Carl T. Bourbon Whiskey

$35

Score


8.0/10

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