Our pursuit to review all the core range and the elusive limited expression Michter’s whiskeys continues, today with the 2019 release US*1 Barrel Strength Bourbon.
Previously, we brought you the story of Michter’s – the brand 264 years in the making. We first took a bit of a cheap shot at the Michter’s lineage and the lack of a tangible connection between the Michter’s brands that date back to 1753, and the name obtained following the brand owner’s bankruptcy in the early 2000’s. But then we backpedaled a bit, recognizing that Michter’s president, Joe Magliocco, himself had a history with Michter’s.
We have reviewed the US*1 Bourbon and the 10-Year Bourbon, the US*1 Rye and the US*1 Barrel Strength Rye, the Toasted Barrel Finish Bourbon and Toasted Barrel Finish Rye, and then recently the US*1 Sour Mash Whiskey. But now we focus on this Michter’s Barrel Strength Whiskey, a Kentucky-only bottle that Eric Schroeder brought back to Kansas this past summer from the distillery.
Michter’s Barrel Strength Whiskey was first released in 2017. While the Barrel Strength Rye is more readily available, the Barrel Strength Whiskey is of much more limited supply. It is a single barrel product, although that information is fairly well hidden on the bottle.
Michter’s Barrel Strength Single Barrel Bourbon Review (Barrel No. 18F865) (107.0 Proof) (NAS)
Nose: An initial ethanol burn that feels a bit higher than 107 proof. Burnt brown sugar; cornbread; toasted oak; faint almond; candy cane; baking spice; herbal; white pepper. Softer flavors but more burn overall than should be expected. (3.5/5)
Palate: Creamy, with flavors that really develop on the palate. Brown sugar; graham cracker; milk chocolate; candy cane; creamed corn; toasted oak; almond; herbal (rose stem and thyme); white pepper. (4/5)
Finish: The creaminess continues. Brown sugar; graham cracker; more herbal coupled with earth notes; candy cane; lingering oak. (4/5)
Overall: I didn’t fall in love with the nose initially, but after working through the entire nose-palate-finish experience and coming back to the nose, it works. The entire experience works. The palate and finish take some of the nose notes and adds to it creaminess and amplified flavors, without adding any 90-degree turns. Alone they are really quite pleasing, but together they create a very good pour. (4/5)
Value: This is a Kentucky-only release that Eric Schroeder picked up for me at the distillery. I didn’t expect to like it, especially for $100, as I’ve not been a big fan of Michter’s bourbon products in the past. But I do like it. Even for $100. I wouldn’t buy it everyday, but I’m satisfied with the price. (3/5)
“The entire experience works. The palate and finish take some of the nose notes and adds to it creaminess and amplified flavors, without adding any 90-degree turns. Alone they are really quite pleasing, but together they create a very good pour.”
Scott is a co-founder of Flight Club and a frequent writer and reviewer on the Club’s blog.