A while back I noted that Ezra Brooks is my favorite whiskey. I'm afraid I have to retire Ezra, Elijah has taken his place. This whiskey almost made me shed a tear when I tasted it so I thought I'd review it for my mass of followers. I can't think of a single thing I don't like about this fine bourbon.
Presentation: classic short bottle with a cork top. The dark colour, result of 12 years of aging in charred oak barrels, is rich and brown. It's important to note that Rev. Elijah Craig was the first maker to age his whiskey in charred oak in 1789. This whiskey goes back to the days when George Washington was president.
Nose: Particularly pungent, brown sugar dominates over oddly leaf/grass-like hues but the grain presence is still there in the shadows. It's obvious this is a 94 proof whiskey.
Taste: The oak adds a lot of character of wood and vanilla without being over-caramalized. A smooth smoke flavor sets up nicely and fades into fruit tones of dates and raisins after rolling around on the palate a bit.
Finish: This one lingers a mile. It's not overwhelmingly hot but leaves a pleasant burn of dryer spices and vanilla.
This is an perfect example of what balance of flavors and excellent alignment should be. This was the true "small batch" bourbon before the term ever even existed. 97 out of 100.