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Doc Swinson's 15 Year Old "Rare Release" K&L Exclusive Exploratory Cask Series Nonchillfiltered Small Batch Cask Strength Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey (750ml) (Pre-Arrival) SKU #1465260

Price: $154.99

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Tasting Notes

Opportunities like this one are about as rare as hen's teeth in the whisky world. Even more unusual about this incredible offering is the climate we're in today. Bourbon is absolutely on fire. Anyone with any interest in alcohol is aware that old bourbon is next to impossible to get. Even if you get access to whisky over 12 years old, it's likely valued by the seller at several multiples above the retail price. Most of the time those old whiskies aren't even from Kentucky. When they are actually distilled in Kentucky, their value goes even higher. So to be able to offer our customers a significant quantity of old Kentucky bourbon at a reasonable price is an absolute privilege. Add the fact that it's cask strength, real small batch and sold exclusively at K&L in California and you've got a recipe for an absolute legend. The parcel is less than 20 barrels, mingled together before leaving KY to protect the identity of the manufacturer. The mashbill gives us a few clues to the source: 78-79% corn with near equal parts of rye and barley. Similar recipes are produced everywhere from Beam to Heaven Hill or Buffalo Trace. Why would anyone sell off such excellent barrels? Likely they couldn't market such a small parcel and didn't want the stocks to bolster a local competitor. Great old Kentucky Bourbon at retro prices. *****DOUBLE GOLD 2020 SAN FRANCISCO WORLD SPIRITS COMPETITION*****

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Staff Reviews

  • David Othenin-Girard
    By: David Othenin-Girard
    5/3/2020
    K&L Staff Member
    When I first got wind that our friends at Doc Swinson's were going to bottle a 15 Year Old Kentucky Bourbon and sell it for a reasonable price, I didn't believe it. I was certain it was a hoax. But then a sample showed up. We tasted. We loved. We Bought. Everything we could afford. I'd have bought it all if I could. But what I love about this product isn't simply that it's great whisky at a totally fair price, it's that total lack of pretense around it. No BS stories about the distillery misplacing barrels or Grandpa's old recipe. And while we'll likely never pinpoint exactly where it came from, the origin is way less important the journey. And that journey has taken this rare special treat to our doorstep. Here is what I taste. The nose is packed full of dark cherries, old cigar box, sandalwood, exotic wood, hints of cinnamon and vanilla. It definitely has that old whiskey feeling to it on the nose, which often means that the palate might be a bit astringent or hard-edged, especially at this high proof. But instead the mouth is overtly sweet with those cherries taking charge up front, tons of creaminess, but not supper oily or viscous. As the whiskey travels the palate the overt sweetness turns savory and spicy - from caramel covered cherries to fresh tobacco, peppermint, cinnamon and a little bite in the back. It's just so drinkable and inviting, it just seems to good to be true. Yet here we are. Hopefully this is a signal of what's to come from Kentucky in the future. If the big companies don't want to deal with bottling and selling this amazing juice in tiny batches, we will gladly do it for them. We've purchased over 1000 bottles of this incredible bourbon and it's nearly half sold out already. There should be plenty of opportunity to taste it in advance of it selling out, but don't wait long because I believe once people actually begin to understand what we've got here they'll be bunkering these while they can.
  • Andrew Whiteley
    By: Andrew Whiteley
    3/7/2020
    K&L Staff Member
    High octane 15 year old Kentucky Bourbon is basically a thing of the past. Especially at anywhere near affordable prices. The Doc Swinson is a monster - super rich and dense with tons of woody tannin and leaning towards the savory side but not lacking for that hit of American oak's sweet vanilla. More peanut butter than butterscotch. Fresh popped popcorn and dark cocoa mingle into a mouth filling lingering flavor bomb. It's a rare thing to taste a whiskey upon its initial release and realize you've stumbled into a hidden gem and surefire collector's item.
  • Illya Haase
    By: Illya Haase
    2/29/2020
    K&L Staff Member
    Whoa, Nelly! That is one helluva Bourbon! David knocked it out of the park. Let's talk about the nose on this thing...candy corn, burnt toffee, vanilla, and a penetrating oak spice note. This is not one that burns the nose hairs. It's just sweet and floral, like honeysuckles in the springtime. The first sip though is a slap to the senses! Candied red hots fills the sinuses. Notes of brown sugar, barrel char, caramel, and toasted oak -just to name a few. The second sip is oily with notes of vanilla, leather, tobacco, and that beautiful mature oak. The finish is long and slow with a warm Kentucky hug of dark cherries and cinnamon. Man, this is good. It reminds me of my old favorite Faultline line we used to carry. I still have a half pour left. So, grab a couple of bottles. Or else, you'll be looking at that one bottle of Swinson's years from now longing for more!
  • Jackson Lee
    By: Jackson Lee
    2/25/2020
    K&L Staff Member
    We didn’t get a whole lot of information on the provenance of this bourbon, which bothers me as both a bourbon drinker and a whiskey nerd but I quickly let it go; you don’t see too many bourbons with a 15 year age statement on the bottle these days. The nose is herbaceous and not what I expected from a 15 year old bourbon. Initially I got golden brown sugar follow by the herbal qualities of ginseng, cola nut, and salted black licorice. After it had some time in the glass, the nose kept enticing me back with its sweet brown sugar and boiled peanuts came into play. The palate has a full, almost oily quality to it, which I quite enjoyed and keeps that brown sugary sweetness I got on the nose. Then, spicy cinnamon and the Dr. Pepper note came in with some heat behind it before settling down for the finish. The end was oaky and grippy with a grassy sweetness to it.
  • Keith Mabry
    By: Keith Mabry
    2/25/2020
    K&L Staff Member
    Destined to be one of our top spirit offerings this year, you would be foolhardy to overlook the gem that is Doc Swinson's 15 year. On its face, it is everything a hardcore Bourbon enthusiast is looking for with its age statement and almost nebulous backstory. But, where it really delivers is in the glass. This has a beautiful and layered intensity that delivers waves of flavors. I tasted from a single pour over several days and each time I went back to it, it offered me something new. From brown sugar to vanilla to maple, the sweetness on the nose is defined. The aromas of caraway, chicory, orange peel and cherry pits are equally engaging. The palate is seamless and even at a cask strength of 59.1% abv, this is smooth and lifted. The finish is minutes if not hours long. A tremendous offering that needs to be on your back shelf.
  • Shelby Griffiths
    By: Shelby Griffiths
    2/22/2020
    K&L Staff Member
    In two words, completely shocked. I have never experienced a bourbon quite like this before. On the nose I found red apple skins, eucalyptus, vanilla mint, and pandan leaf. Playing a harmonic game of tug of war between the cool and warm aromas filling the glass. The palate is electrifyingly energetic, leaving a warming tingle with a rush of cinnamon, pink peppercorns, and touches of banana. It's incredibly rare to come across a bourbon like this, and with 15 years of age on it, it would be a sin to not take home a bottle at this incredible value.

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