It was just over a month ago that I wrote an article on a new “micro distillery” in Cleveland, Ohio named none other than Cleveland Whiskey. Since publishing that article one of my brothers who lives in Ohio has been trying to get his hands on a bottle of Cleveland Whiskey’s Black Bourbon; however, he hasn’t had much luck. There just isn’t much to go around and there’s quite a demand for it back in the Buckeye state. Fortunately, one of my readers was kind enough to send me a couple samples from his bottle. Finally time to give this one a go.
If you would like any background information on Cleveland Whiskey or how this Black Bourbon is created, feel free to check out the article mentioned above: “Cleveland Whiskey: Breaking Tradition for Innovation”. It contains everything that you might have questions to.
Price: Approx $35/750ml
ABV: 50% – Non Chill-Filtered
Color: Russet / light mahogany
Nose: Acidic with notes of tree bark, wood spices, vanilla, pine resin, and slight hints of molasses and brown sugar.
Palate: Again, slightly acidic and bitter with notes of light vanilla, light spices, cedar, and perhaps a hint of toffee? Hardly anything going on here.
Finish: Moderate, drying, and bitter with hints of clove and cedar wood. The finish is very chalky towards the end as well. This is probably due to the high levels of sediment in the bottle.
Despite my predictions, I really kept an open mind going into this dram, but that didn’t help the outcome at all. To be honest it tastes quite like how it is made; a young whiskey being pressure forced through chunks of wood. It’s very unbalanced, simple, chalky and thin on the palate with quite a developing bitterness. There’s a lot of wood influence going on, but it’s nowhere near the same kind of influence that occurs over long periods of time (much longer than 6 days) in a cask. In my opinion, a failed attempt at cheating the clock. You’re going to want to mix this.
Big thanks to The Bourbon Enthusiasts Lounge for the samples!