Four Roses OESF 10 Year Barrel Strength B&B Private Selection Bourbon
As it opens up in the glass, a bounty of caramel and rich fruits jump out, roasted peach and apricot, and a touch of almond. Then the nose takes an abrupt and distinct turn towards mid-century soda shop with a soft vanilla sweet nose of cream soda, and a hint of sassafras. On the palate the cream soda translates to vanilla sweet cream, with rich blackberries, that signature mint note, juicy caramels, and slight spice notes of cinnamon and oak. A little water brings out more of the oak and rye spice, pulling out clove and nutmeg, while the fruit gets a bit tarter, more raspberry-esque, and the mint takes on a slightly more savory herbal character. Take it slow, enjoy the ride.
*One more note for folks who enjoy putting together a home blend. Earlier this year, Four Roses announced Small Batch Select, whose blend was inspired by the interplay of two particular yeast strains and beloved limited-edition releases. “The combination of the F and the V yeast strain is the magic behind the Al Young 50th Anniversary and the 130th Anniversary Small Batch,” said Four Roses Master Distiller Brent Elliot. The F strain of yeast brings out herbal, minty qualities and a creamy texture, while the V strain adds a delicate fruit flavor, a long finish and a great mouthfeel. The Al Young, 130th Anniversary, and Small Batch Select all also contain bourbon made with the K yeast strain, which adds more spice notes. If you’ve picked up all of B&B’s Four Roses picks this year, (OESK, OBSV, and now OESF), consider saving a bit for your own limited edition single barrel quality, additionally aged, cask strength “Select” blend.