Old man, look at my life,
I'm a lot like you were,
Old man, look at my life,
I'm a lot like you were.
This bourbon is a true bourbon in every sense of the word. Corn makes up the majority of the mashbill (70%) with rye making up the balance. This actually creates what we would call a "high rye" bourbon, and I can tell you from the nose right now that the rye is very forward. How do you know if the rye is forward? It's the difference between that sappy sorghum molasses / dark fruit "feel" to the nose (corn influence) and sweet, ethereal honeysuckle honey. Brace yourselves though, because there's a lot more to this spirit than meets the nose.
Let's dip our toes in the water.
Either way, the corn mash wins out in the end. Don't misunderstand me when I write that, however. This is a beautifully balanced, integrated bourbon, and that rye lightens the load in all the right spots, adding a nice honey and spice to really flesh out the complexity. At ~$32, this is a steal wherever you can find it.
In the next review we'll taste the 10 yo Bulleit Bourbon and do some comparisons. The original expression is Niel Young singing "Old man take a look at my life, I'm a lot like you were." The trick well be seeing how well the old man aged...
A special treat for reading this far.
Over Christmas, I bought a fresh bottle of Bulleit for the purposes of making brown buttered bourbon. Yes, that is an insane idea given what I just wrote above, and no, I don't harbor any prejudices against real butter. You'd better not either, if you want to try this magnificent recipe. Here's what you need:
2 sticks of unsalted, real butter.
Sweet. What I want you to do is put those 2 sticks of butter into a large pan and cook them over medium heat. You're going to watch them melt, then it will probably bubble a bit, and you'll start thinking "Am I done?" No. Keep cooking the butter until it takes on a decidedly brown color. This doesn't mean oh, it's yellowish, I mean you need to watch the butter caramelize. If it's smoking and or splattering your heat is too high. You really can't mess this up if you just give it time. When it doubt, give it a little more time. Low heat will take a while.
Next, uncork that bourbon bottle and pour it into the pan with the butter. If will now look like a nice, cloudy brown wassail, and will probably smell divine. Stir those liquids together for a bit to let them get in solution, keeping the heat on low. Don't throw away your bourbon bottle.
Now, turn off the heat. This is important: don't stick the pan straight into your fridge. Wait for it to cool to about room temperature - you don't want to melt your milk cartons. Once you can pick it up without oven mits, place the pan into your refrigerator (covered) and leave overnight.
In the morning, you'll notice the butter fats have congealed near the surface into a soft, white film. That's okay. You need to take a funnel, some cheese cloth, and strain that liquid back into the original bourbon bottle.
Enjoy your Manhattan, good sir or ma'am!