This expression is created using barrels specifically chosen by Uncle Nearest’s founders and curated by Victoria Eady Butler, Master Blender (who is also Nathan ‘Nearest’ Green’s great-great-granddaughter).
Appearance: Light gold. A nice thick beaded tide mark. Many lovely thick trails form on top of a viscous film.
Nose: A heady ABV wave greets the nose first. Honey, vanilla and Christmas spices waft from the glass, accompanied by barley sugar, red apple and pear. Oak and subtle black pepper appear after a small amount of time.
There’s a very faint soap aroma, not strong enough to be unpleasant, just ‘there’.
Palate: A fairly decent mouthfeel. Tannin bitterness, but none of the drying initially. A decent helping of black pepper, cinnamon, honey, heaps of berries, and orange sharp sweetness.
It’s a unique palate for an American whiskey, in a good way too. Plenty going on and the sweetness really adds another welcomed dimension.
Towards the end of the dram some drying builds, but it’s light and not offputting.
Finish: The pepper evaporates quickly, leaving the sweetness and cinnamon to linger for a short to medium amount of time.
It’s a lovely finish and leaves you wanting more.
Overall: Very pleasantly surprised. More going on than some other US whiskey that I’ve tried. The orchard fruits on the nose and berry/orange notes on the palate really work with the spices and oak. Lovely.