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An Even Rarer Eagle

Jack Bettridge
Posted: April 15, 2011

(continued from page 1)

William Larue Weller Kentucky Straight Bourbon (126.6 proof, 12 years), also uncut and unfiltered, is made with wheat in place of rye in the mash bill, but still manages a fair amount of spice among its honey, nut and cedar charms.

Thomas H. Handy Straight Rye Whiskey (126.9 proof, six years) is the spice leader of the group with loads of nutmeg and cinnamon, but a beguiling hint of cake icing.

Eagle Rare Straight Bourbon Whiskey, 17 Year Old

(90 proof, 45 percent alcohol by volume, 750 ml., $70)

APPEARANCE: A dark amber color that its age would suggest. Gives up its sturdy legs only begrudgingly.

NOSE: While subtly floral and fruity, the aroma fairly blossoms out of the glass and you'll swear you can pick up its candy at half an arm's length.

PALATE: The sweetness of the nose turns surprisingly dry at the first flush on the tongue. Then the sweetness slowly builds back, revealing maple candy, vanilla and some orange peel.

FINISH: On the long, lush ending comes the rewards of leather and pipe tobacco.

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