One of Old Forester’s most desired bourbons is returning later on this summer season, and also our very early tasting reveals it might be just one of the most effective over the last few years. No, it’s most likely not the ideal. This is the 21st version of Birthday Bourbon given that it was presented in 2002, and also while we’ve tasted them all (yes, each of them), it’s tough to choose faves. But a couple of points established this year’s over several previous launches.

Old Forester Distillery loaded these 119 12-year-old barrels on April 16, 2009. They grown in Warehouse G, where a great deal of great things has actually originated from since late (see: This Was the Rarest Whiskey of 2020—and There’s Only One Barrel), prior to being batched, and also bottled at 104 evidence.

Birthday Bourbon releases have actually constantly been fascinating and also eccentric. The great deal of barrels made use of to make this scotch set has constantly had a “story” behind it, though often those tales have been a little forced. Others, however, have actually imbued the brand name with an enchanting feeling of mankind, like when one year’s launch contained a great deal of scotch that took a day much longer to make, since a squirrel shorted out a high-voltage line in the center of fermentation.

But 2021 confirms you don’t require a tale if the scotch is actually freaking great. You can obtain a feeling of that from the first sampling notes from master cup Jackie Zykan.

“This year, we’ve composed a bold, compelling offering which showcases the unique fruit-forward side of Old Forester,” claims Zykan. “Playful berry undertones with summery dessert notes balance out to our flagship spice finish while taking sippers on a textural journey from velvety to dry mouthfeel.”

On the nose, we kept in mind deep, great smoky tips of old oak; intense, active tips of lotion soft drink; and also a sentimental echo of cherry cough medicine.

On the taste, it’s misleadingly grain ahead initially, yet with confidence rotates to a variety of treat faves. An unique Milky Way equilibrium of nougat and also sugar controls, yet as it approaches the surface, jammy berry cobbler keeps in mind counterbalance a distinctive cinnamon warmth with some sharp, sweet taste.

This is among Old Forester’s most typically styled birthday celebration bourbons in current memory—it’s eccentric in some detects, yet mainly it’s simply a truly fine example of what the Old Forester mash costs can do provided sufficient time.

Old Forester has actually produced some really incredible bottles just recently, including its 150th wedding anniversary sets, and also the very first solitary barrel options from its rye mashbill. But this 2021 Old Forester Birthday Bourbon appears to place a finer factor on the underlying message: This distillery understands what it does best, and also it’s mosting likely to maintain doing simply that.

The 2021 set of Old Forester Birthday Bourbon will certainly be readily available beginning on the birthday celebration of George Garvin Brown (September 2) in the exact same restricted retail capability as previous years, along with at the retail patronize Old Forester Distilling Co.

It will certainly lug a recommended market price of $130, yet with tax obligations and also various other upsales, you can anticipate to pay considerably extra in a lot of states—if you can discover it in all. Luckily, if you begin currently, there’s a lot of time to begin preparing your search.

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