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  1. #1
    Administrator in exile
    Join Date
    Aug 2002

    BOTM 9/08: Festival Bourbons

    With apologies for the late start this month, I thought we should use the last 10 days or so of September to discuss new bourbons that appeared on the scene during the Bourbon Festival this year. One of note was the Mariage from Four Roses.

    What new releases did you have the opportunity to taste/purchase, and what do you think of the latest crop of premium bourbons?

    Sound off

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2004
    Bristow, VA

    Re: BOTM 9/08: Festival Bourbons

    Mariage is good. It IS sweet, but it's rounded, and balanced, and luxurious. It reflects 4R's brand positioning approach well.

    The William Heavenhill bottling (Bourbon Heritage Center only) is luxuriant, soft, and complex. $500? Of course not by any rational judgment, but there are widely-distributed scotches and cognacs out there that are not as enjoyable.
    Jake Parrott
    Ledroit Brands, LLC

  3. #3
    Bourbonian of the Year 2010 and Guru
    Join Date
    Aug 2005

    Re: BOTM 9/08: Festival Bourbons

    Oh...there were new bourbons? I guess I should have spent some time with those, but older bourbons and ryes, newer ryes and occasional "other" spirits tended to capture my attention.
    2010 Bourbonian of the Year

    As long as you have good whiskey you're not "unemployed", you're "Funemployed!!!"

    I'm no Pappyophile

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Eastern Pennsylvania

    Re: BOTM 9/08: Festival Bourbons

    Another great bourbon released during the KBF was Willett 12 y/o Single Barrel Proof Non chill filtered. 114.8 proof. Absolutely outstanding and one of the best whiskies I tasted all week. Thanks Fricky for sharing.
    Colonel Joseph B. "Bourbon Joe" Koch

    "Bourbon.....It's cheaper than therapy!!"

  5. #5
    Admin, Trippah, and Bourbonian Of The Year 2015
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Northeast Ahia

    Re: BOTM 9/08: Festival Bourbons

    Prior to tasting the Willett 7yo bottled for Toddys and Liquor World, I picked up a bottle on the recommendation of Dougdog. After tasting it at the Tuesday evening gazebo, I picked up two more to take home.
    My name is Joel Goodson. I deal in human fulfillment.
    I grossed over eight thousand dollars in one night. Time of your life, huh kid?

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Apr 2007

    Re: BOTM 9/08: Festival Bourbons

    Wow, the Willett sounds very interesting. Can you share some tasting notes?


  7. #7
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Nor Cal

    Re: BOTM 9/08: Festival Bourbons

    Man. The Willett expressions seem to be neverending.
    "It hasn't cured my broken heart, but it sure helps a lot."
    -Ernest Tubb

  8. #8
    Bourbonian of the Year 2009 and Virtuoso
    Join Date
    Sep 2003
    Houston, Tx

    Re: BOTM 9/08: Festival Bourbons

    I tried both the Willett 7yo sold at Toddy's and the 12yo from Party Source and liked them both. Attention Roger........the 7yo is very similar to the 4yo you and the East Bay Study Group did recently. Think of your 4yo slightly attenuated with the additional time in wood. I only had a small taste of the 12yo but need to revisit it again...hopefully at the next Gazebo table.

    Regarding the number of Willett expressions out there, I can think of 15 different ones without trying very hard. From fiery 4yo's to 22yo (maybe older) ryes.


  9. #9
    Bourbonian of the Year 2011
    Join Date
    Sep 2002
    Toronto, Canada

    Re: BOTM 9/08: Festival Bourbons

    Some of the 4's definitely fiery but not the East Bay one, they picked good!


  10. #10
    Join Date
    Sep 2006

    Re: BOTM 9/08: Festival Bourbons

    Personally I didn't see enough difference between the Willet 4 and 7 to warrant buying a bottle of the 7. The 12 is a totally different story! I tried to find a bottle but couldn't. I'll call around and maybe locate one on my next trip to Kentucky.

    To me, the Mariage burst with chocolate on the nose along with a hint of berries. The chocolate exploded on the pallet and remained through the finish. The finish was long and the chocolate got more bitter the longer it was in my mouth. An excellent dessert bourbon. Deeper reflection brought out a hint of mint. I had some with some 85% cocoa chocolate. WOW!

    Just the way it hit my weird taste buds.




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