Published on October 4th, 2012 | by Siz2
Prichard’s Double Barrel Bourbon
This review is part of my October Pairing / Review Series along with the Tatuaje Little Monsters. To see the full list you can head on over here to the overview and see everything I have reviewed this month.
First, a little personal backstory on this bottle of bourbon. I went to a tasting a couple of months ago, at my favorite liquor store here in town. They have wine tastings all the time, but when I saw they were having Prichard’s distillery come in, and they were going to give samples of all their products. Boy, was I excited. Not to mention, the President of the company was going to be there, Phillip Prichard himself. I figured this would be a good time to talk shop a little, and get the inside scoop.
I had seen these bottles on the shelfs at some different stores around town, but this liquor store had everyone one of their products. I was really excited to get to try them all. The first on the list was the Double Barrel Bourbon. I tell ya what, after one sip, I knew I was gonna have to throw down some money and buy a bottle. Philip was even kind enough to sign my bottle in a gold sharpie, it says “To Eric, Cheers, Philip Prichard”. Pretty stoked about that, not gonna lie!
After talking to Philip for a while, he told me why it’s called Double Barrel Bourbon. This particular bourbon is distilled with their specific recipe. Then after aging it in an oak barrel, they empty the barrel, and cut it with water to the specific proof that they want. In this case, 90 proof. Now all bourbon manufacturers do this, some don’t cut it as much, while others cut it even more. What makes Prichard’s Double Barrel Bourbon different is that they take the cut bourbon, and put it back into an oak barrel. This gives the freshly added water a chance to soak in some of the flavor and oak flavor from the barrel. Then they proceed to age this for another two years. That my friends is why it’s called Double Barrel bourbon!
The bottle that contains Prichard’s Double Barrel Bourbon is fairly simple. Rectangular in design with rounded edges. It’s very similar to Woodford Reserve’s bottle. The label on the bottle is nice and clean and gives you all the details about the proof and a little info on the distillery.
If you flip the bottle around you’ll notice on the back of the front label, there is something similar to watermark. It’s a picture of a man, I believe it’s Benjamin Prichard, to me it’s a little creepy, and kinda cool at the same time. It’s hard to get a good picture while there is still bourbon in the bottle.
Also on the back side of the bottle there is another label that describes the double barreling process as I described it above. Of course their version is a bit more concise than mine, but still same information. Ok, enough about how it looks.
Nosing this bourbon gives off the classic bourbon smell. Instantly, I pick up a lot of oak and vanilla. Very little caramel, I can pick up the heat coming off the bourbon as well. In fact if you nose the glass too long your nose hairs might even catch fire.
I take a big sip and swirl it around in my mouth, and let it ooze over the sides of my tongue. The front of my tongue doesn’t send too many signals, but the sides of my tongue start sending out fire alarms. It has that classic bourbon taste to it. Not much caramel, but a ton of vanilla and oak. My tongue is left salivating after I take the initial gulp down. I can’t tell if my tongue is salivating because it wants more, or if it’s just trying to put out the fire.
To me the finish on this Prichard’s Double Barrel Bourbon is just about perfect. It lingered around long enough to really get the intensity of the flavors. However, it left by the time I was done tasting it. What I was really surprised about is, the lack of burn in my chest. Typically with bourbons, I get a long warming burn in my chesty cavity that kind of warms you from the inside out. I didn’t get that with this particular bourbon. A little disappointed about that, but there is enough heat on the front end to make up for it.
Reviewed on the Rocks
I used my awesome round iceballs for this review. I love making these things and they work perfectly. They chill the bourbon without watering it down too fast. I’m not gonna lie I prefer to have my spirits on the rocks. Hence, the name of the site. I know it waters them down some, but it definitely opens the spirit up and lets you experience more flavors than usual.
With this Prichard’s Double Barrel Bourbon on the rocks, the nose is still very similar to when it’s neat. The intensity is dialed down a notch or two, but it’s still there. I feel like I can really pick up on the oak even more when it’s on the rocks. Seeing as how this is double barreled, it would make sense. A lot of oak, but the vanilla has been dialed down some. Still that classic bourbon smell of corn though.
When this bourbon is chilled it is much more delicate on the palate. I was able to pull out some different subtleties, I got a lot more woodsy earthy notes out of it. Still the strong vanilla taste, but I felt like the oaky flavor really took over once it was cut down some. The heat and burn on the Prichard’s Double Barrel Bourbon weren’t really cut down that much. The sides of my tongue still salivated, and wanted more. Granted the temperature was cooler, but it didn’t affect the heat of the bourbon as much as I thought it would have.
Another surprise, is how ice didn’t affect the finish. I couldn’t notice much, if any difference in the finish of this bourbon. The taste lingered about the same amount of time, and the lack of burn in the chest was still there. It didn’t lower it like I assumed it would. It actually stayed very similar to how I perceived it on the neat review.
Prichard’s Double Barrel Bourbon: 9/10
- Overall, this is a fantastic bourbon. I love the taste and the complexities. The only true disappointment was the lack of what I like to call the ‘bourbon burn’. The oaky flavor that comes out of the bourbon is excellent, the vanilla is strong and defined. There’s very little caramel which is somewhat disappointing, but overall if you’re a bourbon fan I have no doubt that you’ll love this bourbon!