The question put before us by my brother was quite simple for me (and my brother) to answer. If you are reading this blog, you are likely accustomed to long winded tales about the good booze, so settle in.
While the challenge was to discuss a “desert island bourbon”, I prefer the TROPICAL island bourbon, being from Florida for the past 16 years. When the challenge was presented, I could not help but think of Johnny Depp in Pirates of the Caribbean asking “why is the rum gone?” as it burns on the pyre. As we prepared to hunker down on our metaphorical islands this past March, I admit that I participated in the hoarding. Not of toilet paper. Not of paper towels. Not of hand sanitizer, Clorox, Lysol, laundry detergent (seriously, who cleans that much???), cash, or bacon. I hoarded booze. I’m already on a first name basis with the wine buyer at Total Wine, and I have earned many grand reserve points in the past 7 months. Apparently, I purchased an extra bottle of Four Roses small batch every time I visited. I recently discovered I had no less than four bottles stowed in the bar. Jack Sparrow and I will be quite content on our island, and no one will be burning the bourbon.
We come from a family who gets together every year for Christmas (except those years ending in COVID). My uncle and cousin on our mother’s side are also big fans of brown spirits, so favorite bottles are often exchanged at these gatherings. Two or three years ago, Mike and I both presented our uncle with a bottle of Four Roses small batch. We had not discussed our gift idea, but autonomously decided upon this fabulous choice based on our perfect genetic alignment about what makes a great bourbon.
Mike and I hit the Four Roses distillery while tasting the bourbon trail a few years ago. The tour is a must see if you are wandering through Kentucky and get a little thirsty. Four Roses has an elaborate mix of strains of yeast and mash bills to create the different varieties of their bourbons. The small batch has a higher rye content than a lot of bourbons which gives it a spicy bite, while still being incredibly smooth and drinkable. I find this a lovely bourbon that can be enjoyed on the rocks and can stand up in a Manhattan (aka the world’s perfect cocktail). You also get to keep the rocks tasting glass which has a rose on the bottom. This makes a great sugar cookie press with a pretty rose if you are motivated to bake during the holidays. It also makes an excellent vessel for bourbon if you are motivated to drink during the holidays.
The sh**show that is 2020 will be over soon. Cheers!