The Four Roses 2015 Limited Edition Small Batch Bourbon, as always, is a tough find but an exceptional product. This will be the last release under Jim Rutledge who is retiring as the Master Distiller at Four Roses for the last 49 years. There were 12,672 bottles distributed this year at a barrel proof ABV of 54.3%. The Four Roses team is transparent around the recipe printing specifics on the back of the bottle. The ‘O’ denotes that it was distilled in at Four Roses in Lawernceburg KY and the ‘S’ denotes that it is straight whiskey. The second character represents the mash bill’s grain blend and the fourth character defines the particular strain of yeast – this infographic breaks it all down. They also let the consumer know that it is a blend of a sixteen, fifteen, fourteen and eleven year bourbons.
The results of this carefully blended product is a smooth and perfectly balanced bourbon. The nose has a nice balance of spicy alcohol, vanilla and earthiness. The taste is everything you want in a bourbon with sweet honey and grain that is smooth and spicy at the same time. The finish is long, coating the palate with earthy vanilla flavors.