Barrell Whiskey American Vatted Malt

When the history of American single malt is written, this whiskey should be recognized as a milestone. Not just because it’s the first blend of its kind, but also because it marks the point at which the industry has the confidence and the supplies to craft a totem pole that says, “This is who we are.” It’s akin to that moment when Stan Lee and Jack Kirby decided to assemble Thor, Iron Man and Hulk into the Avengers and realized that there was no going back.

What Barrell has created here is a blend that as good as a Compass Box Scotch, yet distinctly American. It’s youthful and feisty without being uncouth. Let’s talk about the flavors: is there anything more American than cherry? The nose is ripe with it and it provides the backbone of the palate. It’s not an artificial candy cherry, either, but a delicious rounded one that is neither too sweet nor sour. There’s clove too, particularly on the finish, which is long and spicy and untainted by any of the feints or green notes that tarnish much of the younger craft spirits. The body is silky and fruity and drinks way below its strength. It tastes and feels sophisticated and integrated. It’s more than the sum of its parts.

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