Monday, June 15, 2015
More Beam Signature Craft: High Rye & Rolled Oats
I previously reviewed the brown rice and red wheat bottlings from the Jim Beam Signature Craft series. Today, I taste two more bottlings from this series: rolled oats and high rye. Both are 11 years old and 90 proof.
Jim Beam Signature Craft Rolled Oats, 11 yo, 45% abv ($50 for 375 ml)
The nose is sweet with honey and some peanut notes, a pretty typical Beam nose. The palate begins with sweet caramel then turns dry with some nice oak notes. It's a decent bourbon, though it's hard to discern any particular impact from the oats.
Jim Beam Signature Craft High Rye, 11 yo, 45% abv ($50 for 375 ml)
Jim Beam already makes a series of high rye bourbons under the Old Grand-Dad and Basil Hayden's label. Is this simply an older version of those bourbons?
The nose has a lot of fruit: pineapple, nectarines, etc. The palate is dry and a bit soapy with some mineral notes that carry into the finish. This one is a bit all over the map flavor wise. Surprisingly, what it doesn't seem to have is much in the way of spicy rye notes. There's a bit of rye spice in there, but it's pretty muted. This one just didn't come together well.
Well, this was the opposite of what I expected. The rolled oats was pretty decent, but I didn't care for the high rye. Having now tasted four of these alternative mashbills, it's interesting to note which elements of the Jim Beam style are in evidence in the different permutations. While I certainly haven't cared for all of them, the quality has generally been good, and I'm glad Beam released them, though I wish they were a bit more affordable.
Thanks to John Burlowski for the samples.