One byproduct of barrel strength, non filtered, barrel to bottle bourbon is the barrel char dregs that come with it. For some, this char layer on the bottom of the bottle is the prize at the end of the journey.
Last night I enjoyed the last pour from a 2005 William LaRue Weller. I handled the bottle gently in order to minimize agitating the char. I was mildly successful but still managed to get some char into the glass producing a pour that was more the color of weak coffee than the deep amber hue of a typical pour. I added just a touch of water and wasn't disappointed with a full flavored dram of wheat bourbon goodness. The char was present on each sip but not unpleasantly so.
Some may be turned off by this but to me it's all part of the experience of enjoying bourbon of varying degrees.....including barrel char. You will most likely find char is George T. Stagg or Bookers and of course I've seen it in some of my barrel picks that go from barrel to bottle.
I owe an apology to a friend of mine (that's you Em), where he and I have argued over the years about which WLW is better, 2005 or 2006. My preference over the years has leaned toward 2006 but he swears by 2005 but in this case, I tip my hat to the 2005 as it was an exceptional dram.