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Wednesday, January 1, 2020

Woodford Reserve Wheat Whiskey Review

I'm back with what seems like my first review in ages... and as a bonus, I have my friend Brett McMillionaire helping.

Welcome to the review for Woodford Reserve Wheat. This is the newest permanent edition to the Woodford lineup and follows my other reviews of Woodford Bourbon (83.5/100) and Woodford Malt (57.5/100). Since this wasn't made with 51% or more corn, it is officially called a whiskey. With that said, let's get to the review!

Manufacturer: Brown-Forman
Age: Unknown

Location Produced: Woodford Reserve Distillery, Versailles, KY

Mash Bill: 52% wheat, 20% malt, 20% corn and 8% rye

Aroma (from manufacturer): Aromatic spiced (cinnamon and cedar) and cooked fruit (apple, pear, banana) mingle with a delicate floral character sweetened with light vanilla bean and brown sugar notes

Taste (from manufacturer)Spicy applesauce and toasted coconut notes enliven an earthy mint and cocoa nib mix

Finish (from manufacturer): Dry, subtle cocoa nibs and lingering apple peel


Who is this for?: People looking to try a wheat based whiskey

Cost (Ohio): $34.99 + tax for a 750ml bottle

Let's start the review. 

Taste - Score 26 out of 35

On the nose, Brett picked up spicy, pepper, and slight floral notes. I definitely picked up the floral notes. It's a bit lighter on the nose than what I'm used to. 

For the taste, Brett picked up toffee and pepper. I picked up more of the floral and herbal notes. It came across as sweet. After having a few drinks, I feel there isn't enough substance and has a thin mouth feel. It's more drinkable than the Woodford Reserve Malt, but I don't enjoy it anywhere near as much as Woodford Reserve Bourbon. 

Smoothness/Finish - Score 17 out of 25

The finish is light and smooth with a little warming sensation. There is a slight alcohol taste on the finish, but it's not overwhelming. This is something I think I would enjoy more in the hot summer months than in winter.

Intangibles: Color/Appearance - Score 10 out of 15.

The color on the Woodford Wheat is much lighter than some of the heavier proofed bourbons but comes in a similar color as some of the lower proofed. The first picture is Woodford Reserve Bourbon the left, Woodford Wheat in the middle, and 451 Spirits Boneshaker on the right. The picture in the glass doesn't do it justice how coppery/orange the wheat looks in the glass.

Availability - Score 3.5 out of 5

Although this product is fairly new to Ohio, it's not hard to find. I've seen the Woodford Reserve Wheat on the shelves at multiple stores so it can be found if you try. Below is the map of Columbus with the stores that are showing having it in stock. The bottom picture is a comparison of Woodford Reserve, where you can see that it is fully in stock and available at more locations. 

Woodford Reserve Wheat

Woodford Reserve Bourbon

Overall Value - Score 10 out of 20

If a brand is going to carry the Woodford Reserve label, it has to be held to the same standard. After reviewing this, there isn't the depth and sophistication of Woodford Reserve Bourbon and I don't think it tastes as good as the Woodford Reserve Rye. Since they are all priced the same at $34.99+ tax for a 750 ml bottle, the overall value of the Woodford Reserve Wheat suffers. 

That isn't to say this isn't without some uniqueness. It's a herbal whiskey that may be more approachable for some, but for me, it isn't as enjoyable as the Woodford Bourbon. The appeal of this is for people looking for a lightweight whiskey to drink straight or on the rocks. For those looking for a more robust flavor profile, this isn't the whiskey for you. 

Final Score: 66.5 out of 100

Note: This review was done by Mark. The bottle was purchased at retail in Kentucky

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