March 3, 2006

Elijah Craig Small Batch Bourbon Review

Elijah Craig Bourbon
12 Year Old Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey
94 Proof (47% ABV)
Typical Price: $15 - $20 for 750ml - buy it at Internet Wines & Spirits

Elijah Craig 12 Year Old BourbonElijah Craig was a kindly old coot who used to travel the countryside, handing out Bourbon to all the good boys and girls. Actually he wasn't - we made all that up, but we really wish it was true. In fact, he was a Baptist minister from Kentucky who was pivotal in the creation of that sweet, sweet nectar we call bourbon. We recently got our hands on a bottle of the 12 year old small batch that's distilled under his name - does it live up to his legacy?

The Color: Reddish Brown
We like redheads, and Elijah Craig reminds us of one. Or at least his whiskey does.

The Nose: Butterscotch?
We were pleasantly surprised by the sweet smell of butterscotch and honey, but it's not cloyingly sweet - there's the warmth of rye in there too. Pleasantly, there was no alcoholic burn there - it just smelled welcoming.

The Taste: Keep It Complex, Stupid
Usually we like our drinks to be relatively simple. But Elijah Craig 12 Year Old posed us a challenge. There was a strong rye taste, spicy and heated. But then, we also tasted fruit, citrus and berries. And what else, maybe some of that butterscotch we smelled, as well as the woodiness of the oak? Yessir, it's all there. When we breathed in, we could feel the heat rushing into our lungs. Adding water or ice removed some of that heat, but we liked it best straight up.

The Recipes: What You Talking About Willis?
We're sure this stuff would be great in an Old Fashioned or something similar, but we recommend this one straight.

The Verdict: Excelsior!
We were very impressed with Elijah's 12 Year Old offering. Not our typical style, but it grew on us significantly. This is the one we've been turning to lately when it's time to do something a bit different. This one's great to chew on neat as you're sitting by a warm fireplace.

The Site: Learn more from the Bardstown Bourbon Society.

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Posted by Jake Jamieson at March 3, 2006 7:46 AM
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