2015 Axis of WhiskyFest Tasting no. 2. Distiller: Heaven Hill. 45% ABV. 7 years old. Price: $30.
Brought to the Fest by the great-grandson of Isaac Bernheim himself. (See the excellent Atlantic article “The Jewish Origins of Kentucky Whiskey” for an eye-opening look at the little-known history.)
One of the few wheat whiskies on the market, with a mashbill consisting of at least 51% soft winter wheat. It has a rich, toasty, Maker’s-like palate. The body’s on the lighter side, but with great balance and mouthfeel. Honey. Light molasses. Begging for some BBQ.
Mild and maybe a touch underpowered compared to its corn-based cousins, Bernheim is still worth appreciating on its own terms. A modest but worthy tribute to the long-neglected legacy of old Isaac. – BO