Old Grand-Dad 114 Bourbon Review
I filled this glass just a bit more than I usually like to; I usually try to review a pour that starts right at the transition of the bulb on a proper glencairn glass. Sometimes less is more and things can be either overpowering or muted at too full of a glass. But it's been a long day and I'm ready for one good pour before probably an early to bed night tonight! Cheers.
Company on Label: The Old Grand-Dad Distillery Company
Whiskey Type: Bourbon
Mash Bill Percentages: 63% Corn, 27% Rye, 10% Barley
Further identification: This is distilled at Jim Beam & lists "Lot No. 1" is on the back of the label
Nose: Dusty nut shells at the start. Light leather and pepper spice. Powerful dustiness that overwhelms the nose. Faint berries hang around a caramel base. A musty paper note only sticks around for a brief moment before settling into more oakiness than anything else. After a little while in the glass things are smoothing out well and vanilla is starting to dominate more. A bit of meaty allspice can be dug up on deep inhales. Time for a sip. After a sip, the vanilla characteristics are much more pronounced and the glass noses more smoothly. More pepper is there now, but again lighter. This opens up very well after some time in the glass. It was darker and musty at the start, but now it's just a solid, standard bourbon bouquet of aromas. Much less of the Beam nuttiness than I was expecting. The palate and finish are really the highlight of this pour, which will certainly help its score. The empty glass smells like chocolate, plum and raisin.
Palate: Wow, much sweeter than the nose let on. Things start out with a very tart cherry that brings with it a good bit of spice and a strong Kentucky hug. The linger carries a lot of the cinnamon hots you usually get out of higher proof 'spicier' cherry profiles. There are some rye spice funky bits very well hidden in the cracks of the syrupy cherry flavor wheel. Another sip reveals lovely vanilla, rye spice, and caramel. Molasses is a bit metallic, but it's instantly more overwhelmed with the thick cherry mouth coating. This is a powerful pour at 114 proof. There is a solid mouth coating and the flavors that come with it are quite tasty. It's not bursting with impossible layers of complexity, but it is also certainly not bland in any way. The profile sticks to its guns all the way through. Powerful cherry, caramel, cinnamon hots and some pepper spice are the highlights of the experience. There was also a brief, wild rising linger of nutmeg that took me by surprise on an exhale. If you wanted to check if your taste buds are working effectively, give this a try. It's powerful in a great way.
If you're still paying attention down here, you might be saying: "Nick, a 3/5 AND an Amongst the Whiskey stamp of approval?" Yes. This is the perfect representation of a whiskey that doesn't really overly impress me per se, but I would love to keep around for what it delivers for me. It's got some great flavors that I think deserve to be experienced, but don't go in asking for the moon from this one. I also really wanted to try this in a review to sort of qualify myself for an upcoming private barrel group experiment that utilized an Old Grand-Dad 114 base. Keep your eyes peeled for that review soon!