Class: Kentucky Straight Bourbon
Reviewer: Bobby Long
The folks at the Barton 1792 Distillery sure love their Kentucky history. 1792, which is displayed in large gold numbers on all their bottlings, is the year Kentucky officially became a recognized Commonwealth (fancy word for "State" for us non-Kentuckians or Virginians). And hey, this obsession with Kentucky has paid off, as 1792 bourbon is the official toasting drink of the Kentucky Bourbon Festival.
Barton 1792 loves Kentucky so much that they have created this special one-time release to commemorate the 225th Anniversary of Kentucky statehood. It's made from a small batch and bottled at 92.15 proof, because it just so happens that Kentucky was the 15th state to enter the Union! Of course, this one time release was confined within the borders of the Bluegrass state, but you'll see plenty of it floating around by resellers.
- The youngest barrels in the batch are 10 years old
- Has 1792's standard bourbon mash of 75% corn, 15% rye, 10% malted barley
- Bottled at 46.075% ABV (92.15 Proof)
Nose: Caramel, fruit, and vanilla cream greet you out of the glass. The fruit is reminiscent of cherry or strawberry. There's also a nice angel food cake note underneath.
Palate: First thing I get is a little caramel, brown sugar, and oak, followed by a warm, juicy red fruits similar to what I found in the 1792 Sweet Wheat but more pronounced. There is a nice burn on the tail end that carries the notes of fruit and cream into the finish.
Finish: Sweet, fruity, and oaky with a bit of caramel. The finish is medium in length and the whiskey leaves a nice "full" feeling coating the mouth. There is a little vanilla and actually a nice spice to finish it off.
Buying Recommendation: Worth buying a pour. First things first this is the best 1792 I've had. This has the nice mouthfeel I found in the 1792 “Sweet Wheat” with the flavors that are missing from the small batch. I don't typically side with fruitier drams but this one is done well. At just under 93 proof it's well balanced and deep enough to make it a very enjoyable sip.
The best part of this drink is the nose; to me it's elevated and sweet and conveys the whole drink to you. The drink that follows is good but the nose steals the show. The whiskey needed to be a little bit fuller for my tastes. The profile was pleasant and the drink was smooth but I wanted just a little more umph to push it over the top. It was originally released at $35.99 for a 750ml bottle. You might end up having to pay more to get that bottle out of Kentucky if it’s still even available. Unless you're an avid fan of Kentucky or a bourbon collector, there are better bourbons to be had for the price.
The Rating Scale
At WBSE we use a true 100 point scale for scoring to allow whiskeys to further differentiate themselves (as opposed to a letter grade scale where 90% of whiskeys fall between 78-92). This allows you to more easily compare scores between different whiskeys. Here is how the scale breaks down:
1-49: Varying degrees of bad
60-69: Better than average
90+: truly exceptional
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