Four Roses Distillery marked the culmination of its $55 million dollar expansion project with the official launch of Small Batch Select–the first permanent addition to the Distillery’s Bourbon lineup in 12 years. During a recent private debut with Four Roses Master Distiller Brent Elliott, I savored all there is to know and enjoy about Four Roses’ newest family member, Small Batch Select. The Non-chill filtered (104 proof) Bourbon joins Four Roses Single Barrel, Four Roses Small Batch and Four Roses Bourbon with a roll out to select retailers in Kentucky, New York, California, Texas and Georgia this month!
Let’s start this post off with a bit of shrill honesty. I don’t know anything about Bourbon Whiskey or Scotch whisky, besides the glaring omission of the letter “E” in the spelling. That’s what makes special events like this week’s private debut of Four Roses Small Batch Select even more fascinating. The intimate “lunch and learn” hosted by Master Distiller, Brent Elliott offered invaluable information about the Four Roses brand as well as their newest family member.
During lunch Master Distiller Elliott doted upon the bourbon whiskey’s inclusion of six Four Roses’ recipes and its truly unique flavor characteristics. “It’s all new, but at the same time, it’s an extension of what we do, and what we do well,” said Elliot.
But before we dive into the delicious details of Four Roses Small Batch Select, let’s clear up the confusion behind Scotch whisky and Bourbon whiskey.
Scotch Whisky vs. Whiskey vs. Bourbon | Knowledge is Power
The main difference between scotch and whisky is geographic, but also ingredients and spellings. Scotch is whisky made in Scotland, while bourbon is whiskey made in the U.S.A, generally Kentucky. Scotch is made mostly from malted barley, while bourbon is distilled from corn.
– Boom ♥
Small Batch Select
Four Roses Distillery History & Origin
Established in 1888, Four Roses is the only Bourbon distillery that combines two mashbills (grain selection) with five proprietary yeast strains to distill and age 10 distinct Bourbon recipes, each with its own unique flavor profile. With distilling and warehousing operations in Lawrenceburg and Cox’s Creek, Kentucky, respectively, Four Roses is dedicated to producing award-winning Bourbons with smooth and mellow tastes and finishes. Four Roses is available in all 50 states.
Notes of Flavor and Aesthetic
Four Roses Small Batch Select smells so good! The aromatic scents of raspberries, clove and nutmeg offer the promise of a quite enjoyably experience. An experience that in my opinion is best appreciated “neat”. Its creamy mouthfeel and vibrant notes of caramel and vanilla danced on my tongue. Tasting it side-by-side with the other members of the well-established Four Roses collection will offer a more extensive review of this premium spirit.
Master Distiller Elliott hand-selected and mingled six of Four Roses’ 10 Bourbon recipes. Each aged in new American oak barrels for a minimum of 6 years, to create Small Batch Select. This bottle features the yeast strain: VKOQF. Which produces the uniquely different flavors of delicate and rich fruit, spice, herbs and floral essence. It’s a whole mouth party, trust me!
As previously mentioned Small Batch Select is 104 proof, 52% ABV and non-chill filtered. What does non-chill filtered mean? Chill filtering is a step most distillers take to remove chemical compounds (esters, proteins and acids) produced during fermentation and maturation. The spirit is cooled to roughly 0 C, which causes the compounds to precipitate out of the solution. This makes it possible to trap them in a fine filter. This is purely cosmetic. It doesn’t affect the actual taste of the spirit.
Exclusivity versus Accessibility
Four Roses Small Batch Select is currently only available in the following select markets: Houston, Austin, Atlanta (Metro), New York, Los Angeles and San Francisco. It’s a super exclusive find, but is available at the Specs on Smith Street. It retails for $59.99. Compared to regular Small Batch it’s worth every penny.
If you haven’t decided what to get dad for Father’s Day (Sunday, June 16) might I suggest a bottle of handcrafted artistry!
If you’re a Four Roses fan you’ll appreciate the extra proof and non -chill filtering offered by Small Batch Select. I will surely be adding this to my bar-side rotation. If you’re relatively new to bourbon, and are looking to expand into a bit higher proof and richer profile – without breaking the bank, it’s a more than solid choice.