Wednesday, February 13, 2013
Little Bourbon on the Prairie: High West American Prairie Reserve
David Perkins' High West Distillery has cooked up all kinds of interesting whiskies: numerous ryes, blends of bourbon and rye, and even a blend of bourbon, rye and peated scotch. While they had used bourbon in some of their blends, they had not released a bourbon, until now.
American Prairie Reserve is labeled a "blend of straight bourbons" which indicates that it includes straight bourbons distilled in more than one state. In this case, it's a combination of a six year old bourbon from LDI in Indiana with a mashbill of 75% Corn, 20% rye, 5% barley malt and a ten year old Four Roses bourbon from Kentucky with a 60% Corn, 35% rye, and 5% barley malt mashbill (i.e. Four Roses mashbill B).
High West American Prairie Reserve, Batch 3, 46% abv. ($43)
The nose has lots of wood along with some strong, spicy rye characteristics. There is plenty of rye spice on the palate, then some sweetness with some wood on the background that leads into a sweet and spicy finish.
This is a very drinkable whiskey with a good balance between sweet and spicy. It tastes like a high rye bourbon, which is interesting given that it uses the high rye mashbill from Four Roses but a lower rye recipe from LDI. Of course, we don't know what the proportions are of each whiskey. In any case, it's good stuff.