Buffalo Trace Distillery has just released an artizan bourbon that is Bottle In Bond and uses a unique souring method for the mash used in the make. This whiskey is 100 proof and aged for 9 years, so it already sounds like it fits the bill for a good whiskey experience.
This is named after the founder of the Buffalo Trace distillery Colonel E.H. Taylor, my guess is they called him Colonel, this being Kentucky and all. There is a whole back story here about how the Colonel had a secret mash recipe and that they tried to find out specifically what he did, in the end they just went with an interesting and innovative process for the mash that “might” have been what the Colonel did…
So what is so darn innovative? Well like a lot in the bourbon world innovation is at the margins hoping it yields a unique flavor. This sounds interesting however. Almost all whiskey that is made in this country is a product of what is called “Sour Mashing”. This process takes the spent mash from a previous batch of whiskey and puts it in with the new mash. This helps to lower the PH of the mash and aids in fermentation by adding nutrients that help to propagate yeast. This is typically done at a 1:3 or 1:4 ratio old to new.
The EH Taylor Old Fashioned Sour Mash does not use any spent mash. Instead they make the mash, and then through aging the mash it naturally sours on its own. The PH comes down to a certain point and then they release the yeast to begin fermentation. It is a new process that involves some chemistry but should make for an interesting bourbon.
Unfortunately this will be a limited release at this time, and I may never see here in Idaho. It is retailing for about $70 for a 750 ml bottle, so it will set you back a bit, but it does come in that cool “Single Maltesque” cannister, and that should be worth about $30 all on its own. If you see it and are feeling flush pick one up and give it a try. I’m sure it is tasty stuff.