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Friday, November 30, 2018

Kentucky Owl Announces New Planned Distillery

Kentucky Owl has announced a $150 million dollar plans for a 420 acre pyramid shaped distillery in Bardstown, Kentucky. Instead of the preferred pyramid builder Ramesses II, Kentucky Owl has hired Pritzker Prize-winning Japanese architect, Shigeru Ban to design the distillery.

Thursday, November 29, 2018

2018 Columbus Bourbon Holiday Gift Guide

Welcome to the first ever holiday gift guide. I've identified a few ideas for the bourbon lover in your life at various price points.

1. The Phantom Mini Ice Maker - ($85) - My friend Matty G and I have spent more time and effort trying to make clear whiskey cubes than we care to admit. Our goal was to make crystal clear ice cubes... We started with tap water, then distilled, then boiled, then anything else we could think of... Nothing ever worked. From what we finally researched, the proper technique involves coolers within coolers and flipping things over and it's way too involved....

Thankfully, the Phantom Mini Ice Maker will take care of the clear ice for you. It is a bit expensive, but is a fun gift for anyone who is hard to shop for or has gone through the same struggle as we did.

Wednesday, November 28, 2018

Ohio Division of Liquor Control Announces Four Roses 130th Anniversary Raffle

The Ohio Division of Liquor Control (ODLC) has announced yet another raffle for their limited supply bourbons. This time for the Four Roses 130th Anniversary limited edition small batch.

The auction will occur Thursday, Dec. 6, 2018 · 6:00 p.m. - 7:30 p.m. at the following locations:
O'Bryan's Wine & Spirits - 30 Bottles
8972 Columbia Road Unit A, Loveland

Location Change - Walt's Churchill Market - 24 Bottles
3320 Briarfield Boulevard, Maumee

Giant Eagle - 36 Bottles
6700 Perimeter Loop Road, Dublin

Buehler's - 30 Bottles
1055 Sugarbush Drive, Ashland

The price is $149.99 plus tax. From the ODLC, the information on Four Roses:

Tuesday, November 27, 2018

Buffalo Trace Announces Lighting of the Trace on November 29

Buffalo Trace Distillery has announced that they will be kicking off the season on November 29th with a host of holiday festivities for their 20th year of celebrating the holidays. New this year will be a brand new route for their drive-through lights display.

Per Buffalo Trace, the opening night schedule will be as follows:

Sunday, November 25, 2018

Bonus Post - Mini-Review - New Riff Bottled In Bond

Welcome to the second mini review. This one is the New Riff Bottled in Bond. I was given two ounces by friend of the site, Ashwin!

Manufacturer: New Riff Distilling

Age: 4 years

Mash Bill: 65% Corn  30% Rye  5% Malted Barley

Alcohol: 50%

Thursday, November 22, 2018

Ohio Division of Liquor Control Announces Blood Oath Trilogy Pack Raffle

The Ohio Division of Liquor Control (ODLC) has announced yet another raffle for their limited supply bourbons. This time for something called the Blood Oath Trilogy Pack.

The auction will occur Thursday, Nov. 29, 2018 · 6:00 p.m. - 7:30 p.m. at the following locations:
Walt Churchill's Market - 6 Packs
3320 Briarfield Boulevard, Maumee

Jungle Jim's - 6 Packs
5440 Dixie Highway, Fairfield

Giant Eagle - 10 Packs
3061 Kingsdale Center, Upper Arlington

North Court Beverage - 6 packs
998 North Court Street, Medina

The price is $599.98 plus tax. Per the ODLC, the information on Blood Oath is:

Tuesday, November 20, 2018

2018 Ohio Bottle Lottery Information

The Ohio Division of Liquor Control (ODLC) has announced details on an auction for the Pappy Van Winkle Family Collection and/or the Buffalo Trace Antique Collection. The entries will need to be completed online at starting on at 12:01 a.m on December 10th and ending at 11:59 p.m. on December 21.

Per the ODLC, The following will be required when registering:
  • First Name

Monday, November 19, 2018

Heaven Hill Announces $65 Million Dollar Expansion

Heaven Hill Distillery announced plans for a $65 million dollar investment to renovate, expand, and rebrand their visitor experience in Bardstown, KY. This expansion will also allow expanded production capacity. From the announcement, some of the new experiences will include:

Friday, November 16, 2018

Cleveland Black Reserve Bourbon Review

Welcome to the review for Cleveland Black Reserve Bourbon. Let's start with the stats from the manufacturer.

Manufacturer: Cleveland Whiskey (I think.... this one is hard to find information on and their website is really bad)

Age: 6 Months

Location Produced: Aged and Bottled in Cleveland

Mash Bill: Unknown

Aroma (from manufacturer): Not listed

Taste (from manufacturer)Not listed

Finish (from manufacturer): Not listed

Alcohol: 50%

Who is this for?: Grover Cleveland, Moses Cleveland (he invented Cleveland), Cleveland Brown from Family Guy, Ricky Vaughn, People in this video...

Cost (Ohio): $31.98 + tax

Alright, let's get to the review! This is the first Ohio bourbon that I'm reviewing, and, as an added bonus, I'm doing this with a guest review, the great Johny K.

Review: Taste -  Score 15 out of 35

Cleveland Whiskey is unique in the way that they create their bourbon flavor. Rather than the traditional approach of aging years in a charred oak barrel for many years, the Cleveland technique is to let sit in the barrel for 6 months, then transfer to stainless steel vats filled with American oak and applying pressure to the vats that allows the bourbon to take the flavor of the wood. The distiller says their bourbon can be ready in as little as 24 hours using this method. Will this technique be better than traditional bourbons? Let's take a look.

With the pour, this Cleveland starts with a light to medium nose. Drinking, we didn't get a ton of unique flavor, and the flavor I did get wasn't enjoyable. When I gave the Duchess a taste, she picked up hints of nutmeg, but that didn't come across to Johny or myself. I found the flavor to be a bit harsh and bitter. I needed to add a heavy splash of water before I could tolerate it without making the bitter beer face. This could be due to the process that Cleveland uses or a higher alcohol content. Either way, we both don't think this bourbon tastes very good.

Smoothness/Finish - Score 18.5 out of 25

Saturday, November 10, 2018

Ohio Liquor Laws - Mixing Dumb with Dumber

TL:DR - The state controls what is sold, when, where, and the price, which inhibits a free market and oversteps the role government should play in society by limiting the supply and demand for liquor.

Since starting this blog, I've received a fair amount of questions as to why availability is part of the scoring criteria? I thought it would be beneficial to write a post on how liquor works in Ohio, why it is a antiquated system, and what should happen in the future.

The way the current law works in Ohio is that all liquor sold in the state has to be sold from a state-run liquor store. The

Wednesday, November 7, 2018

Bonus Post - Buffalo Trace Distillery Tour

Welcome to the third distillery tour bonus post. Our first two looked at Woodford Reserve and Maker's Mark. Today I'm focusing on the beautiful Buffalo Trace Distillery in Frankfort, Kentucky.

Included in the pictures below are some of the warehouses, some of the tour stops, as well as the bottling facility. When we went, they were bottling Blanton's.

Thursday, November 1, 2018

Woodford Reserve Malt Review

Welcome to the review for Woodford Reserve Straight Malt Whiskey. Our first review that isn't a bourbon. Let's get started.

Manufacturer: Brown-Forman

Age: Unknown

Location Produced: Woodford Reserve Distillery, Versailles, KY

Mash Bill: 51% Malted Barley, 47% Corn, 2% Rye

Aroma (from manufacturer): Soft nutty notes drizzled with light caramel and milk chocolate coat a layer of fruit character (apple, dried fruit, tropical fruit). Hints of brown spice, savory mint and brown sugar mingle with a rich note of freshly milled toasted oak.

Taste (from manufacturer)Dark chocolate and caramel coated nuts are dried out with a dusting of cocoa powder and brown spice. A fruit medley brightens a trace of toasted coconut and rich, bright oak character.

Finish (from manufacturer): Nutty and subtly sweet chocolate malt notes

Alcohol: 45.2%

Who is this for?: People looking to try something new

Cost (Ohio): $34.99 + tax

Review:  Taste -  Score 23 out of 35

I wish I had the palate to distinguish everything they say is in the notes. I think the nose is good, but nothing overly unique that would set this apart from other whiskeys. In terms of the taste, it is a bit too alcholly (I made up a word!). This could be from not enough time in the barrel or due to the mash bill, but the main flavor I pick up the alcohol and it's a tad bit harsh for my liking. I will preface this review saying that this is the first malt whiskey that I've ever had so I'm comparing it to the bourbons and rye that I'm accustomed to.

Smoothness/Finish - Score 11 out of 25

The finish on this