A Bourbon Tasting

Recently I had the idea to have a blind Bourbon tasting using six of the usual suspects at one of my favorite watering holes. I am not disclosing the name of the establishment as I am not sure what took place was 100 percent legal as I actually brought in two of the six spirits to be tasted and rated.

The six samples were:

Evan Williams Black – I requested this Bourbon be part of the tasting as I drink it regularly and discovered it at a similar tasting years ago where the majority of the tasters choose this over many higher end Bourbons

Cedar Ridge Distillery Iowa Bourbon - I have blogged and tweeted about this Whiskey in the past and while I know technically it is not Bourbon I had to see how the tasters would react as it is one of my new favorites.

Four Roses – My Personal favorite and the official Bourbon of MySideOfTheBar

Bernheim Wheat Whiskey - Again not officially a Bourbon, however I had to throw at least one curve to the tasters and I enjoy this Whiskey from time to time and it is a Kentucky Whiskey.

Makers Mark – One of my favorites when I am out and about as almost every bar in the KC MO area carries this Bourbon and in many it is the Well Bourbon and the
Bourbon most used in the Manhattans here in KC.

Evan Williams Single Barrel – Another favorite of mine, however the last time I did a tasting I chose Evan Williams Black over Single Barrel.

A couple of tips in case you wish to conduct your own tasting, blind or otherwise:

1. Choose a variety of spirits and vary the price range.
2. Choose a variety of tasters as you will obtain more accurate results
3. Choose the order at random (except of you are doing a wine tasting)
4. Have water available for cleansing the palette between varieties
5. Limit the amount of a taste to about half a shot
6. Use a glass that allows the alcohol to breath and your tasters to be able to take in the aroma. We used some large wine glasses.
7. For the taster have them taste the Bourbon on the tip, middle and back of the tongue before ingesting as each step of the way the Bourbon will activate a different part of the taste buds
8. Take notes, but do not worry if everyone has a different impression as this is why there are so many different alcohols.

We took time in serving each of the different brands of Bourbon and really enjoyed the evening.

So now without further ado here are the results:

First Place: Four Roses - I am pleased to announce that 4 of the six tasters choose Four Roses, the official Bourbon of MySideOfTheBar

Second Place: Makers Mark – Two of the six tasters choose this as the best

Third Place: Cedar Ridge Distillery – Everyone had this listed as either third or fourth best.

Fourth Place: Evan Williams Single Barrel – Most of the tasters liked this brand, but not as well as the others.

Fifth Place: Evan Williams Black – This was a surprise to me, but hey I was not one of the tasters

Sixth Place: Bernheim Kentucky Wheat Whiskey – All thought this has the most unique, well may different taste and I was surprised it did not place a little higher.

We had a great time and enjoyed some fantastic Bourbons.

The Professor


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