Producer: Orphan Barrel/Diageo. Distiller: George Dickel. ABV: 42%. Mashbill: 84% corn, 8% rye, 8% malted barley. Price: $175.
Diageo’s Orphan Barrel series has been hit or miss for me. For every terrific Rhetoric, there’s an underwhelming Forged Oak.
But there’s nothing remotely disappointing about the 28-year-old Whoop and Holler. Orphan Barrel has been unusually transparent about the provenance of this latest release–and given my adoration of all things Dickel, I was thrilled to see that the Whoop is actually a 28-year-old Dickel. And, man, what a Dickel.
There’s a ton of citric acid on the nose, and it almost overwhelms the more delicate vanilla and maple notes. The palate is just superb. Toffee and caramel corn tango for a bit, before being joined by cocoa, vanilla, fresh-baked bread, and maple. The finish is wonderfully sustained. The citrus comes back for an encore, along with the corn, vanilla, and pepper.
A terrific whiskey and one I may be hinting at come Christmas time. Cheers, friends! – TM
Buy Orphan Barrel whisky online at Mash + Grape
An Orphan Barrel representative graciously provided a sample for review. As always, our opinions are 100% our own.
Distiller: George Dickel. 43% ABV. Age: 10-12 years. Mashbill: 84% corn, 8% rye, 8% malted barley. Price: $35-40
The George Dickel Barrel Select was a Father’s Day gift from Mrs. McDram. The bar has been set high for next year.
The Barrel Select is a blend of 10 barrels chosen by Master Distiller John Lunn. Like all Dickel whisky, it’s charcoal filtered (one of the reasons it isn’t classified as bourbon), which is said to yield a smoother, mellower flavor. Because of the true small batch nature of it, there will be variations, but the one I got was a peach.
Though the ABV is only 43%, it feels much richer and more potent. The nose carries vanilla and toffee with maybe a tart fruit on the back end. There’s minerality, but restrained, unlike some of the chalkier Dickels I’ve had. The palate has more of the vanilla, along with rich notes of caramel and hints of rye and fennel. There’s a long warming finish that brings back the vanilla and caramel, plus plenty of bright spice.
For me, this is now a must-have on the shelf. – TM