Put away your Halloween decorations and ignore the fact that this post is a little late. For September’s B&B #BotM, I once again potentially blaspheme as I choose a bourbon that is not made in Kentucky. Sometimes you have to appreciate good booze without geographically limiting yourself. That in mind, let me introduce you to a great bourbon:
West of Kentucky Bourbon No. 2 by Sonoma County Distilling Co.
Thoughts: Forget about bite and excessive burning. Despite its young flavor, this California-made bourbon is surprisingly smooth.
Something, something yellow corn; something, something barley. Bottom line: it’s good.
And you can read more about “the palate” and “barbecue smoke wafts” from this much more professional tasting review. (I assume that you don’t read the B&B posts for super detailed flavor profiles.)
Some History: It’s tough to discuss the history of a bourbon when its distillery is only six years old. Local native Adam Spiegel opened up Sonoma County Distilling Company in the heart of wine country in 2010. It’s a “craft distillery,” which is a very hipster term that probably means they aren’t owned and operated by international corporate overlords.
What is most impressive, however, is that the SCDC operation is “grain to glass,” meaning they mash and distill on site. They don’t cop out by buying and blending other whiskies and slapping their label on the bottle. SCDC trucks in the corn and grains, but they locally source the water direct from Lake Sonoma and springs on Cobb Mountain. (Visit here for a more detailed rundown of the SCDC operation.)
Kentucky may be the historic and current center of gravity for all things bourbon, but West of Kentucky (along with Garrison Brothers in Texas) prove that good bourbon is less about the geography and more about the dedication of the people behind the bottle.
Parting Words: As America approaches a critical election, I feel it’s important for citizens to have good candidates of delicious bourbon that will distract from the yuge mess that is our political landscape. To balance out your predominately red-state (Kentucky) bourbon shelf, add a blue-state bottle that comes with zero political overtones and 100% tastiness.
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