I picked this up as part of a bundling clause that a local store called Wang's did back when they dropped a Weller Full Proof pick. You needed to buy 3 other bottles in order to get it if I remember right, so I went with some cheap options to help them clear their shelves. This was one of those bottles. I finally gave it a crack not too long ago and gave it several tastings before tonight. My previous tastings did not go well, but I wanted to give my final thoughts here in case someone else is put in the same predicament I was in!
Let's get into the review.
Company on Label: Heartland Distillers Indianapolis, Indiana
Whiskey Type: Bourbon
Mash Bill Percentages: Undisclosed
Age: 2 years
Further identification: This is listed as Series: 17 from the Distiller's Selection; it is twice barreled in new charred American oak
Nose: Unripe banana and nutty grains show up first on the nose - two telltale signs of youth on a whiskey. Asphalt and dry oak follow. Pumpernickel bread loaded with caraway seeds is an interesting aroma for a whiskey. I find hay field and a bunch of fresh Spring flower and weed growth. Overall it is very light in aroma. The empty glass smells of clay, playdough, and slightly floral air.
Palate: My first sip is loaded with banana peel and sawdust. I wait about as long as I can with it in my mouth before I find a hint of chocolate and caramel. Another sip provides youthful grain in abundance. It's just barely palatable, but I can't find many exceedingly redeeming qualities to offer any praise to. It's just too impossibly subtle to find anything here which is unfortunate. Plain vanilla, low hanging black pepper spice and a dry smokiness float off the glass and into my chest. I do find myself wanting to like how simple this is, but at the end of the day there are thousands of better products than this one available on every shelf in the world.
This one - though cheap - is surely not 'complete' whiskey. I don't think this should have gone into a bottle at 2 years, nor do I think anyone should anyone spend their dollars on it to be disappointed by an exceptionally lackluster product. If you want to experiment with flavoring projects, this might make a good base for that. Overall - not for me! The twice oaked thing seems like a gimmick to attempt to age faster than a single barrel intends to.