Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Four Roses 2013 Limited Edition Single Barrel

Four Roses does two special releases each year, a single barrel in the spring and a small batch in the fall.  This year's single barrel is 13 years old and from the OBSK recipe, which uses the higher rye mashbill of 60% corn, 35% rye, 5% barley.  As it is a cask stength, single barrel release, each barrel has a different proof.

Four Roses 2013 Limited Edition Single Barrel, Barrel 3-3J, 60% abv ($90)

The nose has everything, candy, oak, rye spice, the whole package.  The palate has honey with plenty of rye spice, coffee, chocolate.  The spice grows through the palate and the finish is rye and barrel.  It's pretty hot, so water is a good idea, and brings out some deeper spicy notes, tobacco and brown sugar.  This is a nice, complex bourbon. 

While many American premium bourbons seem to be declining in recent years, Four Roses just gets better and better.  This bourbon is definitely one of the better Four Roses Limited Edition Single Barrels that I've had.  Whatever they're doing, they're doing it right.


David D said...

"Whatever they're doing, they're doing it right"

That's not just on the flavor-side either. On the PR side as well. Jim Rutledge is pretty much the nicest person I've ever met. If I have a question about the whiskey, he'll email an answer back in five minutes. If I tell him a K&L customer is visiting the distillery he makes it a personal obligation to do the tour himself. You couldn't be supporting a nicer guy with your Bourbon dollars.

I'm glad their whiskey is really getting a spotlight lately with so many other limited releases so difficult to get.

Jim M said...

I could not agree with David more. Not only do they make excellent bourbon, Jim Rutledge spent almost three hours with us when we visited the distillery. He's a gentleman, a savvy business man and makes some damn fine bourbon.

sam k said...

Four Roses provides an outstanding tour experience, too!

Highly recommended.

Ryan Murphy said...

I always love FR limited releases. It's just a bummer that so many people have caught onto them now, so they're not as readily available as they used to be. They're approaching (but not quite there) the levels of scarcity of BTAC.

Retailers are taking notice too. A store by me that has the '13 SBLE on sale has it priced at $130. I imagine the '13 SmBLE is going to be as much or more. =/

Lazer said...

My theory about the awesome FR that we're getting is a result of changing markets. FR is, or was, the biggest selling bourbon in Europe, and vice versa, Europe was FR's biggest customer. Since FR started expanding sales in the US, there was a collapse in the European economy, particularly southern Europe, Greece, Italy and Spain. I don't have the numbers from FR, but I believe that the decline in sales in Europe has led to a push in sales in the US, resulting in a big advantage for FR in the US market. Other major US distilleries are experiencing demand exceeding supply so they are forced to release younger whiskey or otherwise substandard, while FR saw a huge drop in demand from European customers which gives them the ability to put more effort into supplying the US market.

spytech said...

I have not been able to find this in NYC. dunno if this has hit us yet? anyone knows? i have the 2012 and love it.

Matt L said...

Good news is that there will be twice as many bottles of the FR SmBLE released this year (8,000) as opposed to last year (4,000). Love that Jim Rutledge isn't playing any sort of games and trying to keep the LE's scarce to artificially add to their desirability. Not that I know that anyone else is doing that, just making a refreshing observation.