Four Roses Al Young 50th Anniversary
Intro: From Four Roses...
Kentucky- 2017 Limited Edition 50th Anniversary Small Batch Bourbon. Developed by Al Young and master distiller Brent Elliott. Made up of 5% OBSV (delicate fruit and creamly vanilla), 25% OBSK (full-bodied with caramel), 50% OESC (light and fruity), and 20% OBSF (herbal).
In addition, it was full of hints of vanilla bean, raspberry, fig and rich mellow oak with just a taste of spearmint. We made this happen by expertly combining some 23-year-old OBSV, 15-year-old OBSK, 13-year-old OESV and 12-year-old OBSF.
When I heard this was coming out I had to have it. I sent my dad over to the distillery to snag a bottle. At $150, he was wondering if he would get his money back...he did. When I got it last summer, I rushed to open it, knowing how special it was. Carefully selected by Al and Brent, surely these two would get it right...Ummm...No sir. I am pouring a fresh sip right now...the bottle, after a year, is basically still full. On the nose it is astringent at first, I mean an eye clinch, slight eye water from it and a turn away. You shake your head thinking this cannot be made of these old bourbons. Ok, letting this thing sit for...mmmm...30 minutes so far, it has lost some of the sting, oh god, I just took a deep breath of it...its just awful on the nose...such a burn. OK, past that, you get some nice notes of sweetness and definitely that toasted wood smell. Mind you there is a 23 year old bourbon in this mix, so barrel is going to be present.
Here we go...
Oh shit, it burns...holy shit. This stuff is just antagonizing. It burns from the moment it touches any part of your mouth. It's been that way for a year now, every time I try it. It is so hot that you cannot hold it on your tongue to let it mellow and taste all the sweet notes and smokiness. Ok, second swig...less burn...can hold it longer....yuck...it just tastes like hot barrel. I want to like it, I just can't. It puts me off liking regular four roses, that how bad it is.
I actually went to the distillery last year with my dad, and we ran into Al Young. Super nice guy and there is no way I would have imaged he would let this come out to the public for consumption...maybe he and Brent were just swinging by the time they picked these barrels.
Is it worth the $?
NO. I mean, just no. Way too much heat and barrel. It is not worth the price, I'd pay $20 for this, in fact I would rather have Jim Beam white label that to buy this again.