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Doc Swinson's 15 Year Old "Rare Release Batch #8" K&L Exclusive Exploratory Cask Series Nonchillfiltered Small Batch Cask Strength Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey (750ml) SKU #1509570

Price: $159.99

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Tasting Notes

The return of the wonderful and mysterious Doc Swinson's 15 Year is upon us. This newest batch is from the same unnamed source and continues to represent some of the best value available for old cask strength bourbon anywhere in the world. The Doc Swinson's brand was started by a small (and very lucky) bottler in Washington state who'd made a name for themselves finishing Kentucky, Indiana, and Tennessee whiskies in various wine casks. When they had an opportunity to secure some high-quality mature Kentucky straight bourbon, they jumped at the chance and so did we. The source of this excellent bourbon is so concerned about its identity being revealed that the barrels are dumped in Kentucky before being transported to the bottler in anonymous totes. Usually we insist on having some idea of where the products we sell are produced, but one taste of this stuff and those standards get thrown out the window, as it's just too good to care to argue with. We will likely never know exactly where it was made, but as long as it keeps tasting this good, we won't complain. The most special bourbons from Doc are under their "Rare Release" line. This is the 8th release of this truly small batch line, but only the third batch of the unbelievably popular 15 year. This batch contains just 27 barrels and is bottled at 114.2 proof. Another example of why this whisky is one of the most exciting new bourbons on the market today. We love being the California exclusive for this special bourbon.

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Staff Reviews

  • David Othenin-Girard
    By: David Othenin-Girard
    K&L Staff Member
    Well, you animals absolutely decimated the Rare Release #7 in record time. The obvious first thing I did when I saw how unbelievably well our second batch had done, was to call our friends at Doc and start begging for more! These guys are no dummies. They already had another batch on a truck out from the distillery the first chance they got. The only bottleneck is getting labels and bottles and I know they’re doing that as quick as humanly possible. If you don’t already know the Doc Swinson’s story, I’ll give a little recap. Tiny bottler in Washington state, Distiller’s Way. They clearly know someone at one of the big Kentucky bourbon distillers. Who that is, we might never know. I’ve pressed them on it. The only info we do have is an unhelpful mashbill and the knowledge that previous batches have been excellent. Anyways, you’ve probably realized that there’s no old bourbon available and when you see anything that’s even remotely old, it’s either cut down with water, marked up through the roof, or from Tennessee. No offense Tennessee, but we want old Kentucky bourbon, first and foremost. To our continued astonishment, Doc Swinson has done it again. If there’s an endless supply of old whisky coming through this label, it might be the best news of 2020. But it’s 2020, so don’t count on it. What you can count on though is another twenty-seven-barrel batch here, bottled without chill-filtration or reduction. This time, it is back up to nearly 115 proof. Closer to the profile of batch #6 (the first batch of 15 year), than the previous batch (#7). Immediately, there’s a freshness on the nose that’s so inviting. It starts with big red cherries, old leather, sandalwood incense, lacquer box, touches of licorice and citrus oil. On the palate that great freshness comes through again, with lots of red fruit offset perfectly with candied cinnamon and building peppermint. Medium to full bodied, thanks likely to the higher proof, and both sweeter and longer than the first batch. The finish meanders between pungent warming spice, wild honey, toasted vanilla and antique wood. There’s not much more I can say about this awesome bottle except that it tastes damn good. I highly doubt we’ll find many to disagree.


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