Tag Archives: tennessee

Corsair Triple Smoke Review

Distiller: Corsair. No age statement. ABV: 40%/69.35%. Price: $50.

The folks at Corsair in Nashville, TN, pride themselves in breaking rules. Oat whiskey, quinoa whiskey…there’s nothing they won’t try.

Corsair’s Triple Smoke is a blend of three batches of malt whiskey – one smoked with peat, one with cherrywood, one with beech. It won Whisky Advocate’s Artisan Whiskey of the Year in 2013, and during a recent whiskey-related trip, I had my first pour of it and learned what the fuss was about. Upon returning, I told Mrs. McDram I thought she’d enjoy it herself. She laughed and suggested that perhaps there was a bottle lurking in the house. It turned out to be an anniversary co-gift–and it wasn’t just any Triple Smoke, but a monster cask strength single barrel.

At 69.35% ABV, it packs a wallop. Sans water, it’s all fire and smoke, and you miss the glory lurking beneath. But add some water and it comes to life as the best ones do. The nose carries smoke and char, yes, but also cherry and other red fruit–strawberry? The palate is where the power really kicks in, with honey joining the cherry and smoke. The finish is a sustained one, much like the dying embers of a fire.

I loved it from the first dram, and it only got better from there. Cheers, friends! – TM

Buy Corsair whiskey online at Mash + Grape

George Dickel Barrel Select Review

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