I'll start off like I've done in previous reviews by acknowledging that the sample I am reviewing comes from the marketing firm representing Four Roses. I reviewed products from this firm before and have provided both favorable and unfavorable reviews so I have no allegiance to the source of this sample. Long readers of this blog know I call it the way I see it.
Now, down to the review. Once again Four Roses picks and bottles a winner, at least the sample that I reviewed. It's no secret I'm a fan of Four Roses as I've been picking private barrels from them for a number of years. I think Jim Rutledge is doing a fantastic job as Master Distiller and his selection for the 2013 Limited Edition Small Batch is yet further evidence.
I find this release to be better than previous editions. The age blend in this release is very compelling making up two 13 year and one 18 year bourbons using three recipes that encompass OBSV (high rye), OBSK (high rye) and OESK (low rye). Pre-release review put the bottling proof at 110 but the bottles that I have are at 51.6% or 103.2 proof.
At first sip this is a very elegant whiskey full of flavor and lasting viscosity. As the bourbon hits the palate the spice is right up front and leans toward baking spices reminding me of Christmas cake with cloves and cinnamon. The mouthfeel is creamy and at mid palate ripe fruits of berries and tropical fruit pop up. The finish is very pleasant and moderately long with a lingering of moderate oak and and dark chocolate covered fruit.
There were approximately 8,000 bottles released. I managed two grab two before they disappeared. If you can find this on the shelves, I would suggest you grab a bottle. This release is a real winner.