This bourbon is named for the Special Forces horsemen, known as the horse soldiers, who served in Afghanistan. The nose starts earthy and herbal, with notes of leather, licorice, and light smokiness. Drying oak on the palate, with bitter orange and herbal notes, roasted walnuts, and burnt cinnamon and brown sugar. A finish of orange, bitter chocolate, and espresso beans. Water coaxes out raspberry and honey blossom. (DF, Summer 2019)
*96 points, Ultimate Spirits Challenge Top 100 of 2020* An incredible story of heroism underlies the American Freedom "Horse Soldier" Whiskies. The first 12 men into Afghanistan, some of America's most elite special forces, after 9/11 began the fight against the Taliban atop horses in the rugged terrain. While all 12 of those men survived their initial tour, some gave their life in service of our country on subsequent missions. Those that came home, after leaving the military many years later, began the American Freedom Distillery. The numerous ways in which this project harks back to 9/11 and the sacrifice these men made defending America are incredible. The detail that stands out most is that their bottle mold is made from recycled steel salvaged from the Twin Towers. In the booze world, there are a lot of good stories, some more true than others. The Horse Soldier whiskies have come together by the hands of legendary men looking to make a legendary spirit. The barrel strength bottling has a mash bill of 68% corn, 22% wheat, and 10% barley. Aged in level 4 char American oak barrels, it presents a nose of caramel, honey, butterscotch, and a deep spice. Each batch is different in proof, but all are true cask strength and over 55% abv.
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