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One fateful day, an accident happened at the Balcones distillery in Waco, Texas. A batch of corn got burnt to the bottom of one of their stills (which Chip and the chaps built themselves). Whoops. Some people might try to move on and forget about the mistake, but not Chip Tate, oh no! He wanted to make it work, so he sent the spirit through a special smoking process and left it to mature in a heavily charred barrel.
The result is the Balcones Brimstone Resurrection, the whisky that escaped catastrophe. It was released as part of the distillery's fifth anniversary celebration to quite a fanfare. In March 2014, it won the World's Best American Whisky Award at the World Whiskies Awards 2014. Not bad for an accidental whisky, eh?
Nose: Initially dark with clove and leather book covers before sweet potato, rum, treacle and vanilla all emerge. The star here though is the sweet, slightly smoky note of Jerusalem artichoke.
Palate: Sun damaged leather, macchiato and more of those sweet vegetable notes, roasted sweet potato and again increasingly Jerusalem artichoke.
Finish: Extraordinary. The smoke becomes more pronounced to start with before being balanced by pumpkin soup. After this, it seems to never, ever end with sweet barbecue char stretching on and on.
Overall: Despite its provenance (burnt to the bottom of the still!), this isn't a smoke bomb of a whisky, but it is truly staggering stuff. If this is resurrection, we can all be optimistic about the next life.
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Hey there! This is a completely different beast to the 5th anniversary bourbon, but there is a second bottle in the bourbon series, you're very correct. Unfortunately, due to the low amount of bottles available, your chance to try this whisky rests with the World Whiskies Awards Tasting Set. However, do keep your eyes peeled, there is some good news coming soon. --The Chaps at Master of Malt
4th April 2014
I was fortunately lucky enough to get the first 5th anniversary bottle. Was this the second bottle in the series? If so, very disappointed not to be given an opportunity to try and get a bottle.
3rd April 2014