Michter's Toasted Barrel Finish Sour Mash Kentucky Whiskey Review - 2019 Release
Michter's Monday is upon us again! I think I might have reviewed everything I have from them at this point. It really is one of my most well-traveled distilleries I think. I haven't broken down any of my spreadsheet stats by distillery or company yet; that's a next level of nerd-ing I need to get to though. What is something I should try next from Michter's? Other than different years of the same products, I'm stumped! Anyway - this is a new one for me, by way of none other than the legendary Eric @ra1nmannn. Always stoked for a sample review because I do tend to savor all 2oz when I know there isn't any more coming! I typically review a 1.5oz pour (to the transition of the bulb on a glencairn glass), and leave 0.5oz to just enjoy non-analytically after my review is written. Let's get into this one!
Company on Label: Michter's
Whiskey Type: Kentucky Whiskey
Mash Bill Percentages: Undisclosed (originally a 45% Corn, 45% Rye, 10% Barley mash bill, but has been changed)
Further identification: Barrel No 19H125
Nose: Very maple and molasses forward on the nose here. Subtle stone fruit with some earthy tones. It's kind of rocky; like wet cliffs by a tumultuous sea. That sweet Michter's floral perfume aroma I've come to know well is here. Hints of strawberry immediately fall through the floor and a heavy, dank malty spice replaces it. Layers of that lightly toasted oak are just a tiny bit ethanol forward, but presents kind of like a spiced rum. There is a fun mixture of very faint floral notes and herbal notes that don't quite know what they want to be. Post sip more of the oak influence can be picked up for sure. There's a slightly meaty brine characteristic lurking in the background of this glass now. Left nostril for me is all vanilla while the right nostril picks up the earthy oak tones. Later in the glass the vanilla begins to take over and evolve with more of the lightly toasted char creating the fluffy whipped cream that will hopefully eventually lightning rod into the marshmallow note I love on the flagship sour mash offering. Kind of dreamy at times - like you could be floating off into slumber at any moment because of how subtle these aromas are. Some serious herbal funk kicking up near the bottom of the glass now; enough for me to raise an eyebrow while my nose was nestled deep on a long inhale. Buttery... Empty glass smells like burnt sugar, kettle corn and caramel.
Palate: The first sip is incredibly mellow, with silky smooth vanilla and cherry slowly migrating throughout. A larger sip elicits more fruit sweetness that presents somewhat tannic; there's plum, apricot, cherry and red grapes. Hints of pineapple juice are slightly reminiscent of a Mai Tai when combined with some of the spiced rum notes from the nose. Still very silky and creamy, but very thin. The mouth feel is fantastic. I wish it lingered a bit longer. Touches of white pepper throughout give a tiny bit of spice to the palate. Honey and vanilla bean ice cream immediately cools everything down. Custard vibes, with sugar cookie undertones now. The last sip is honey sweet with layers of orange peel, floral undertones, a very faint chocolate and a slow fade through caramel.
I think I might actually like the flagship sour mash a bit better than this toasted barrel. The best toasted barrel offering from Michter's I've tasted to date is the toasted barrel bourbon (which I of course haven't formally reviewed myself...). I always wrestle with these. Some nights they blow me away and some nights they don't. I may have just mistimed this one. I'd love to hear your thoughts on these toasted barrel offerings in the comments. Cheers!