There’s something about a barrel. It could be aged, smoked, coated, grooved, but no matter what comes out of the barrel, it always seems to taste amazing. Barrels have become a favorite aging method of all booze, whiskey and beer alike, and innovation is at an all time high.
Private Barrel Selections
Barrels of Buffalo Trace bourbon just arrived for special delivery to Emeril Lagasse. The famed chef is serving up the bourbon in all three of his Las Vegas restaurants in specially concocted cocktails. If you think you can get this Buffalo Trace at the liquor store, think again. Emeril is jumping on a recent trend that bars throughout the country have started: selecting private, special barrels from distillers to use exclusively at their bars. Middle Branch, an upscale cocktail bar in Manhattan, selected their private barrels from Elijah Craig bourbon while Silver Dollar in Louisville, KY is serving their own selection from Heaven Hill. We’re dying to make a trip to one of the many bars that are housing their own selection and see makes these barrels so special.
Getting Their Grooves On
Frank Sinatra, a famed whiskey lover, is the inspiration behind Jack Daniel’s high end special edition Sinatra Select whiskey collection that is using unique whiskey barrels to create the flavor. Though the whiskey isn’t brand new to the whiskey world, it’s the first time we’ll all be able to get our hands on a bottle. Previously, the Sinatra Select was only available at duty free stores and in Tennessee but now they’ve expanded to major cities across the country. So what makes the collection so special? The barrels the whiskey is aged in are etched with grooves that allow for more wood to whiskey contact. The flavors that come out as a result are unlike any Jack Daniel’s has put out before. You’ll just need a casual $165 to enjoy them. It’s on our holiday wish list.
Ciders Spending Time In The Barrel
If you haven’t noticed, breweries have grown fond of barrel-aged ales. Hard cider is taking a cue from craft beer and putting their apple booze in bourbon barrels to take the flavor to the next level. BlackBird Cider Works is the most recent brand to dabble with barrels in their latest release, Buffalo Bluegrass, a hard cider aged in Kentucky bourbon barrels. We’re intrigued by the flavor that bourbon barrel aged ciders could offer and we’re keeping our fingers crossed more brands jump on the bandwagon.