Today is International Women’s Day, which is right in the middle of Women’s History Month in the United States. Needless to say, as the new President of Bourbon Women, my dance card has been mighty full. Women of the Vine and Spirits held a Toast to Equality. Then I joined the team from Westward Whiskey to hear about their Women of Westward Single Barrel.
The Women of Westward Benefit Barrel is in its second year. On year one, one barrel was chosen by Westward’s female equity partners. It was sold in Oregon only and the proceeds benefited the charity Speed Rack.
This year two barrels were chosen. I had the opportunity to sample the barrel that will be available at select retailers nationwide, but there is also a barrel that is available in Oregon. You can also buy the nationwide barrel #2 directly on their website if you are outside of Oregon. These barrels were also selected by Westward’s female equity partners along with a panel of spirits industry influencers.
Westward is an American Single Malt whiskey that is unpeated and unsmoked. It is aged in new cooperage, and while some releases are finished in wine casks this one was aged in a char level 3 new oak barrel. It’s bottled at 90 proof and is not chill filtered.
The nose has notes of apricots and vanilla birthday cake as well as floral notes, stone fruit, and more. It is surprisingly complex for a whiskey distilled from a single grain (malted barley). The flavor is equally complex with many of the same notes and an additional note of cherry jam.
Aside from the fact this bottle helps women, it’s definitely worth picking up on its own merits.
Photos courtesy of Westward Whiskey and Maggie Kimberl