Four Roses Bourbon

Dec 23, 11 Four Roses Bourbon

Posted by in Spirits

Manhattan’s are one of, if not my favourite, cocktail. I love the warm feeling that starts in my belly and spreads through my body after the first sip of  a perfect Manhattan on the rocks. Some may prefer Manhattans straight up but I like’em on ice because otherwise, I drink them way too fast. There are two types of bourbon, Kentucky and Tennessee but most comes from Kentucky. Although Maker’s is my favourite, I found myself at a tasting for Four Roses Kentucky Bourbon in The Grosvenor Hotel at Victoria Station, the other night out of curiosity to see how other bourbons stack up. I learned a bit as well. Bourbon comes only from the U.S. and was designated a national spirit in May 1964. As such, it is one of the most strictly regulated spirits in the world, the thinking being, that if it represents the US, only a top quality product should be produced. There are two basic rules that all bourbons have to follow: 1. they have to be made with grain and 2. they shouldn’t  be distilled to too high an alcohol content. Bourbon was almost lost because of Prohibition but thanks to the belief that whiskey had medicinal purposes, a few distilleries were allowed to stay open, Four Roses being one of them. As a matter of fact, the distillery has copies of prescriptions written out by doctors for “medicinal whiskey” from the 1920’s. Four Roses was founded in 1888 and has had a long and chequered history. It hit rock bottom when it was owned by Seagrams which produced a lot of minimal bourbon and the reputation of Four Roses was in the toilet. Happily, in the 90’s it was bought by Kirin who set about to restore Four Roses as a quality bourbon. We compared the tasted all the Four Roses Yellow Label, Four Roses small batch and Four Roses Single Barrel. One common theme they all had was a spicy nose, each becoming  more intense in...

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Maker’s Mark + the Machine hitting Londontown

Maker’s Mark is my first bourbon love. Extremely smooth with a faint chocolaty finish, I’ve even made the pilgrimage to Loretto, KY, to visit the distillery and see where it all begins. It’s a lovely place with a brook running through it, which is where they get the water to make the bourbon and everything is done by hand, truly hand-crafted bourbons. They actually do hand-dip each bottle in wax to seal it before being sent off. I’ve even done it myself and have my souvenir bottle up in my room to prove it. I’ve seen Maker’s in the finer establishments around London and now they are making a big push to get everyone to enjoy their fine Kentucky bourbon. Maker’s + the Machine are going to hitting London this week with their Maker’s vending machines. Yes, vending machines, very useful invention for those on the go. Chips, candy, soda pop,porn,eggs,canned bread, live bait. Even (ewwww!) used panties-but that was only in Japan and has thankfully been discontinued. And now, here in London, we’re getting our very own Maker’s Mark Kentucky Bourbon vending machines in the City and around Shoreditch/Liverpool St. the 26,27 and 29th of May. A brilliant idea if ever there was one. Maker’s Mark are setting up 3 vending machines around the Capital this week to dispense such bourbon-esque delights as Maker’s and ginger, Maker’s and appletizer and Maker’s on the rocks. You’re probably thinking, “Ok, canned Maker’s Mark cocktails – been there done that.”  And you’d be wrong. What those wily Kentuckians have done is come up with a vending machine complete with bartender inside, making those Maker’s cocktails as fresh as can be. So keep an eye out for those vending machines around East London. You can also follow them on Twitter@makersmachine where they will be revealing the third and final vending machine location as well as opportunities for fellow redheads to win a bottle of Maker’s Mark by posting a Twit-pic of themselves at the Makers Machine, or a bottle for anyone who guesses the final location before...

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