Any discussion of new and innovative products would be lacking without mention of the Four Roses distillery. With their two mash bills and five different strains of yeast, the possibilities seem limitless. Though probably most widely known for their blended whiskey, which dominated production for decades, a sale of the distillery to Kirin, with their focus once again on bourbon whiskey, has been a renaissance for Four Roses and for the bourbon industry. First released was the ubiquitous "yellow label", sans the "blended" moniker (to the cheers of bourbon lovers everywhere). Several years later came the Single Barrel followed shortly by the Small Batch. Rumor has it that distribution is opening up, and more products are in the pipeline. That is good news for us, and more work for their competitors. Jim Rutledge and his staff at Four Roses are top-notch people and have been very kind to Straightbourbon.com. Let's show them a little love!
This month we'll be discussing the American release of the Four Roses Single Barrel, but feel free to compare and contrast with the overseas release if you are lucky enough to have one. I realize that availability is limited on this bottling; distribution is the only reason we haven't been discussing Four Roses as BOTM until now. But, any bourbon drinker worth his/her salt should have by now visited KY and picked up a couple bottles to take home.