Pappy Van Winkle’s Family Reserve Bourbon 20 Year Old isn’t what I’d normally put down as a choice for the whisk(e)y or bourbon of the year. It’s not in attainable price range, easy to find or even regularly released. On the other hand it is that good! The quality of this product is second to none and there’s no substitute for that standard of aging and distillation!
This is indeed my spirit of the year!
The #1 rated Bourbon Whiskey in the world with a 99 out of 100 rating by the World Spirits Championship. This bourbon is aged 20 years and bottled at 90.4 proof.
I poured the whisky in to a Glencairn glass, added a teaspoon of water and left the whisky to develop for ten minutes. The bourbon is a dark gold, amber colour. On rolling around the glass the bourbon is quite light in consistency with medium legs.
The nose is initially spirit forward, this is followed by sweet citrus, notes of orange and citrus peel. This is followed by caramel, sweet stewed fruit, soft wood and christmas spices. This is all rounded of by a drier hint of dark chocolate.
The flavour is rich and soft with an initial hint of soft oak. You are then just grabbed by the mouthfeel of this bourbon, it’s like drinking silk! This almost reminds me of a very high quality cognac. This is followed by hits of vanilla and almond sweetness. This is rounded of by a note of orange oil and soft caramel.
The finish is really long with honey sweetness and more prominent spice this is just heaven!
If you get the chance please grab a glass of this bourbon! It is simply the best in the world and a great way to round off 2015!
I just hope I can find something nearly this good next year!