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Wednesday, April 1, 2020

Blanton's Single Barrel Bourbon Review

Welcome to the review for Blanton's Single Barrel. Blanton's is one of the most sought after and hyped bourbons out there. Week after week, even the search that bring people to this site has Blanton's all over it... My only exposure was a bottle I bought off the shelf 8 or 9 years ago. However, my in-laws recently toured the Buffalo Trace Distillery and were able to buy one bottle each and they were kind enough to send one my way.

Blanton's bills itself as 'The Original Single Barrel Bourbon Whiskey' and I'm excited to see if the bourbon matches the hype. Let's get started.



Manufacturer: Buffalo Trace
Age: Not provided

Location Produced: Buffalo Trace Distillery, Franklin Co., KY

Mash Bill: Unknown

Aroma (from manufacturer):
Nutmeg and spices

Taste (from manufacturer): Dry vanilla notes with hints of honey amid strong caramel and corn

Finish (from manufacturer): Medium finish with corn and nutmeg

Proof/Alcohol:
93 (46.5% alcohol by volume)

Who is this for?: Hoarders, bourbon enthusiasts, bourbon fans

Cost (Ohio): $54.99 + tax

Let's start the review. 


Taste - Score 30 out of 35

On the nose, for me, this was fairly straightforward. I picked up lots of oak with hints of vanilla. The Duchess called the nose simple, however, McMillionaire picked up tobacco, leather, and a barn smell. 

When I put it to my mouth, the taste isn't overly complex, but it's very nice in the mouth and tastes what a good bourbon should taste like. In terms of expressions, the Duchess picked up mineral and stone and McMillionaire had sweet notes, a slight spice, and honey. 

To me, this was delicious but not as complex as others, but something that I enjoyed drinking straight over ice. 

Smoothness/Finish - Score 21.5 out of 25

All three of us agreed the finish is smooth with a lingering warmth. It's not overbearing. I found it more enjoyable with a splash of water, but that is personal preference. The finish is on point and this is the second highest rating I've given on finish so far (tied with Weller Antique 107 and slightly behind Willett Straight Rye). 

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

Every part of the Blanton's bottle experience is high-end. The bottles come in cardboard packaging. Once you open that, the bottles come wrapped in a Blanton's felt-like bag. From there, the bottle comes adorned with the Blanton's horse stopper on top of a wax ring to ensure the product hasn't been tampered with. As you may know, the toppers 'features a horse and jockey in different strides and poses resembling the stages of a horse race. Each stopper is marked with a single letter that spells Blanton's when the set has been completed.'

The bottle itself is numbered with the date the bourbon was dumped, where it was stored, and what barrel it came from. All-in-all, it's beautiful and looks great on any shelf.

The color is a deep brown and compares well with others. It's exactly how I would expect bourbon to look. 









Availability - Score 0.5 out of 5

As anyone knows who has ever tried to buy a bottle, Blanton's is practically non-existent. When I ran it through the bottle finder, it showed incredibly scarce. I'd be willing to bet if you paid a visit to any of the stores showing limited availability, you'd come home empty-handed. This isn't strictly an Ohio problem, Blanton's isn't available anywhere. The only time I've ever seen Blanton's readily available was in the Duty Free shop in the Atlanta Airport in March of 2019 (video below contains adult language). 



Overall Value - Score 18 out of 20

Well, the open question is did actual Blanton's match the hype of Blanton's... In my opinion, it did. I really enjoyed this bourbon. While it's not overly complex, it is simple and delicious and looks amazing on any liquor shelf. The only problem is that Buffalo Trace doesn't have enough supply to meet demand. If you see this on the shelf, this is one to pick up immediately... and as a reminder... Bourbon is meant for consumption... if you have a bottle of Blanton's.... quit hoarding it and drink it already! It's delicious.

Final Score: 85 out of 100


Note: This review was done by Mark with help from The Duchess and McMillionaire. The bottle was purchased at the Buffalo Trace Distillery and given to me as a gift.

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