Every so often I end up sorting all of my whiskey.
Sorry ladies, I’m taken, I know how the last statement got you all a twitter. And some of the gents too. I’m taken there too.
So I’m sorting my whiskey, living the high life, and noticed some samples at the very back. And a full bottle. All marked with “2013”. And then I realized I was a tad behind on them.
So I pulled them out and gave myself a reward for sorting. Once I was done masturbating, I then poured some bourbon.
So this is the complete line-up from 2013. In my defence, while there is variation between years, this should show as a snapshot of what is was like. At least.
Oh well. Angel’s Envy is made by the Louisville Distilling Company, which is owned by Bacardi.
This whisky was made by Lincoln Henderson and his son, Wes Henderson, and then his son, Kyle Henderson. So Lincoln comes out of retirement (formerly had worked for Brown-Forman, creating Woodford Reserve and Gentlemen Jack, as well as other bourbons). He decides he wants to create something new with his family.
Thus Angel’s Envy was created to be different. Using a mash bill of 72% corn, 18% rye, and 10% malted barley (for the bourbon) and a 95% rye mash bill (for the rye), they take an extra step of double maturation in port barrels (for their bourbon) or rum barrels (for their rye). They then blend in batches of 8 to 12 barrels at a time. While they aim for a finishing time of 6 months, there’s no set time limit on it. So it could be shorter or longer.
So that’s different. It’s made by a legend of whiskey, and continued by his son and grandson, and comes in a cool bottle. How does each one taste though? And how did it taste when Get Lucky and Blurred Lines were playing 24/7 on the radio.
Thanks to my buddy John for picking this up while driving random Imgurians around the states. Yeah, not a joke.
Angel’s Envy Bourbon is up first. It’s roughly 6 years old, though that’s not stated. The specific port is French oak ex-ruby port that were 60-gallon.
Let’s see how this tastes, shall we?
Price: N/A at the LCBO, and my buddy wouldn’t tell me what this sold for years ago because he wouldn’t take any money, the bugger.
Cask Type: New American White Oak and a Port Cask Finish
Colour: 7.5YR 7/10
Nose: Sweet corn, butterscotch, mineral, molasses, topsoil, cereal
Less port influence then I’m used to on the nose compared to Scotch. Given it’s only “about” 6 months, that makes sense. Also don’t know if they are first fill or second fill, however I”m going to guess it’s second fill.
Initial nose is sweetness. Lots of sweets and earth going on. May be off putting to some, however there’s more bourbon notes then I expected, as stated before. Nothing too powerful here, more blended flavours.
Taste: Cherry syrup, cereal, molasses, mineral
Nice cherry flavour, however again quite sweet. Very syrupy mouthfeel, which is nice given the abv. Light notes beyond that.
Has the issue of minerality coming in after the fruit, and then not leading to more fruit. Not a huge fan of that, personally. It’s quite light, though beyond the mineral aspect not turning me off of it.
Finish: Ginger, green peas, basil, corn syrup
Sweet again, not quite vanilla, more of a corn syrup note to me. Lots of herbal notes here. It’s dry, nothing too big to write home about. Interesting herbal notes though, which are nice.
Conclusion: Not a bad whiskey to sip on, it’s not going to blow you away or change your mind. I feel that’s for the others (spoiler).
There’s some things here that I like and things I wonder about. This comes off as a more blended flavour type of whiskey, rather than the strong single note one. That said, the lower alcohol content leaves me reaching for a lot of the flavours.
The port finish was lightly there, and added some dimension, however again I wonder if the lower abv. is hurting this again.
It’s a nice entry whiskey into the brand. However I’m not loving it enough and the low abv. is making me wonder if some bourbon fans won’t give the more high end versions a chance. Needs work.
Thanks to… someone, I can’t find who I swapped for this. Shite.
None the less, I’m still alive after drinking it, so thanks for not sending me poison person I didn’t write down.
Angel’s Envy Cask Strength is like the above, however is cask strength. I initially assumed that, with losing 5% per year in aging, Angel’s Envy ended up around 100 – 110 proof, and thus the watering down to 43.3% was extra water to bring out the favour.
So colour me surprised and call me Ricky when I found out this was barn burning at 60%+! Please note that I definitely remembered to add water to this one.
Let’s see if my main gripe (low abv) fixed the issues I had, shall we?
Price: N/A at the LCBO
Cask Type: New American White Oak and a Port Cask Finish
Colour: 10YR 4/10
Nose: Alcohol, pine, floral, molasses cookies, peach
Initial nose is alcohol. If I was surprised, then I certainly didn’t show it. Needs some time on this one. Honestly I tried it at first without water, and it needs water.
That isn’t to say I agree with the above alcohol content. There’s a full difference of 18.2% alcohol, somewhere in between is better (and no, I don’t know the exact, I added water and tested without a teaspoon).
Nice floral notes here, some molasses, and a nice peach flavour. This punches well above the belt.
Taste: Basil, chili powder, ginger honey carrot, cinnamon
Thick mouthfeel. It’s a joy to drink at cask strength, and keeps it even after some water added. Really hot, lots of earth notes (as before), and more herbal notes on the taste.
Finish: Cinnamon syrup, tarragon, pear whipped cream, carrot muffin, dry
This is where it pulls off the flavourful part of the whiskey. It’s creamy, has herbal notes, keeps the nice dry elements, and overall has that wonderful mouthfeel from before.
One of those finishes that you need a cigarette after.
Conclusion: Yeah, this is what it needed. The non-cask strength version was missing something, and while nicely blended, it didn’t wow me. This? This shows me what they are drinking. Where they are coming from.
There’s spice, good amounts of fruit, and even some bread/baked good notes. It’s not perfect, but what is? Certainly not me. It’s complexity makes this worth it. And the finish won me over. Buy the cask strength over the standard, it’s worth it.
Thanks to /u/tvraisedme for this sample.
Angel’s Envy Rye is a little bit different. First of all, it’s a rye whiskey. Second of all, it’s finished in Caribbean rum casks. Third, it’s finished for 18 months. Finally they had to sample over 100 rums to find the right one to compliment it.
It’s a rough life.
Let’s see how this differs.
Price: N/A at the LCBO
Mashbill: 95% rye
Cask Type: New American Oak and then Plantation XO Rum casks
Colour: 2.5Y 7/8
Nose: Sticky toffee pudding, pineapple syrup, canned pear, cinnamon, orange
Sweet. Very sweet. Super syrupy, tons of syrup. All the syrups that you have ever had. Some acidity and spice to balance it all out, however if you weren’t expecting a sweet dram, it may shock you.
Have this after dinner is what I’m saying.
Taste: Pear, brown sugar, orange, molasses
Simpler than the nose. Lots of orange and pear, and a ton of molasses. It’s sweet. It’s strongly sweet. Water makes it’s nice to sip on and less sickly sweet. Use water here.
Finish: Molasses, lime, caramel cake
Short finish. Some may prefer it. Some may not. It’s sweet again, however the acidity is back and balances it again.
Conclusion: This is a sweet as hell dram with a weak finish and a nose that bites off more than the rest can chew. It’s lovely sticky toffee pudding and lots of different syrups.
This is sweet. Needs water to calm it down. I think the cinnamon is nice, however a lot of the rum took over the rye. I hope that it’s been fixed since then, however I won’t hold my breath. Nicer than the standard, just too sweet.
Bourbon reviews #201-203, Kentucky reviews #126-128, Whiskey Network reviews #1186-1188
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