Reviewed on Wed 06 Apr, 2016
I like the fact that it's high proof, tasty bourbon that doesn't command astronomical money but still feels like it's worth every penny of £50.
KBD (Kentucky Bourbon Distillers) is a bit of an odd duck. Situated and branded as Willett just outside of Bardstown, KY, this is a family owned and operated distillery that also independantly bottles spirits under various guises - Willett, Rowan's Creek, Johnny Drum and this - Noah's Mill. The distillery itself ,which I've visited, is very neat indeed and will certainly be the subject of a future blog post.
This bottle comes in around the £50 mark and is getting harder to find now, though it's not too difficult to grab a bottle or two of this from a decent liquor store in the States. It's a "small batch" bourbon, bottled at cask strength and coming in at a whopping 57.15% ABV (more on that later).
On the nose: Hard toffee, pecan and maple butter, oak and toasted hazelnuts. There's a lot of depth, and a lot going on in the nose. I could smell this all day long if I didn't feel like it'd possibly burn all my nose hair away in the process!
The taste: Dried sultanas, golden syrup, cocoa powder, vanilla extract and lashing of oakiness. This is probably going to be slightly unpopular but in my opinion the ABV is too high. Brought down a few % and the alcohol burn that is there (and it's not that bad for a 57+% whiskey to be honest) would probably be less pronounced and the flavours could shine through more.
The finish: A long, drawn out finish with plenty of spices including cloves, nutmeg and peppercorn and slightly bitter coffee beans.
Personally... I like this a lot. I like the fact that it's high proof, tasty bourbon that doesn't command astronomical money but still feels like it's worth every penny of £50. However, I still think the ABV is too high, and the introduction of either some older stock or lowering of the ABV would have helped raise the flavour profile even more. Still, if you can't afford the high end Willett family estate bottlings this is the next best thing.
Personal Rating: 91/100
Value for Money: 90/100
Overall Rating: 90.8/100