First Try: Four Roses Ltd Ed Small Batch 2021

Every September Four Roses selects barrels that are at least 10 years old (sometimes up to as much as 23 years) to create a special Limited Edition Small Batch Bourbon.

This year’s batch features barrels in four recipes: 13% OBSV 16yo, 6% OBSQ 14yo, 23% OESK 12yo, and 58% OESV 16yo. It is not chill-filtered. It will be released in Kentucky in September and the other 49 states will receive it shortly thereafter.

It will not be released in the gift shop this year but rather will be offered through a lottery. You can sign up on Four Roses’ website 31 August thru 12 September. Those chosen will have appointments scheduled to purchase their bottle at the Four Roses Distillery in Lawrenceburg, Kentucky.

The nose is incredibly complex. There are notes of leather, ripe, round sweet cherries, brown sugar, almost like cherry cobbler with caramel on top.

There are amazing baking spices and fruit notes on the palate. As these are older whiskeys, there is a slight dryness to the mouthfeel, but it stops just short of being cloying.

The baking spice is surrounded by sweet notes of caramel and warm vanilla sugar, and the finish is just the right amount of a Kentucky hug – not too short, not too long.

According to Master Distiller Brent Elliott, the F and Q recipes are in standard Four Roses at less than 10% because a little but goes a long way, and that carries over to this batch, as well, with the Q recipe.

Four Roses has ten different recipes made with two mash bills and five yeast strains. These are the building blocks of all Four Roses Bourbons.

Photo Courtesy of Maggie Kimberl

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