Stellum B&B Single Barrel "Perseus J8" Bourbon
The people behind Stellum Spirits, the folks at Barrell Whiskey, probably need no introduction to avid whiskey drinkers at this point. With their blends, either the numbered batches of Bourbon, or their various special cask finished bottlings, they have become an icon in the world of cask strength whiskey. They introduced the Stellum brand a couple years ago as a more easily priced line with the same ethos of uncut whiskey, blended with care by people who really know how to blend. Since then they have ventured into some pricier special releases under the Stellum label as well, but in general value is the name of the game with Stellum. They also, unlike Barrell, offer a single barrel program for both Bourbon and Rye, at the same great value as their regular lineup.
Over the last year we tried through a lot of different casks from Stellum, both bourbon and rye. All were sourced from Indiana's familiar MGP, and we really wanted to pick some unique ones since they seemed to be pretty generous with the amount of cask samples they were willing to share. It's rare to taste a real dud from MGP, but we were very focused on finding unusual and delicious barrels that would be worthy of our club. So after all that tasting we ended up with three casks, two bourbon and one rye. They are named for different constellations, which represent the differing mashbills and when they were selected by Stellum.
The first bourbon cask, Perseus J8, is made from a mash bill of 75% corn, 21% rye, and 4% malted barley. It's a bright and sunny Bourbon with plenty of fruit to go around, though it also shows a rich depth to back it up. The nose opens with chamomile and citrus zests, with caramel sweetness lifting up behind it. The palate shows lots of spice, with toasted barley, more citrus oil, milk chocolate oranges, spiced mango, and juicy clementine.