This Bourbon is for sale in the gift shop at the Neeley Family Distillery, but I am not sure if it has hit the shelves in the liquor stores yet. It is a very good product that will get better as the barrels age. It is a “wheated Bourbon” with a mash bill of 64% corn, 28% wheat and 8% malted barley. It was aged in a 25 gallon barrel with a number 2 char for 19 months. It is bottled unfiltered. Not quite long enough to make it straight Bourbon, but still a very good product. Royce Neeley takes pride in his products and will talk at length about every step used in making this Bourbon. I highly recommend a trip to the distillery to pick up a bottle and talk some Bourbon with Royce.
Neeley Family Single Barrel Bourbon
Proof: 100.6 proof
Nose: Corn of course. It is very young and corn dominates the nose but there are vanilla and floral notes that remind me of a spring meadow in bloom with the wild flowers. There are fruit notes of blackberries and dates with only a hint of oak wood in the background.
Taste: Corn and vanilla with blackberry and raspberries and a hint of lemon zest. There is a spicy note that may be allspice or nutmeg with a little oak wood. Tasted with a cranberry will bring forward even more citrus notes and baking spices – adding a little cinnamon to the mix. Tasted with a pecan and the fruit takes a back seat to lots of buttered corn and oak.
Finish: Medium long with lots of fruit up front before the spice and that hint of oak come out, drying the finish just a little. The cranberry made the finish longer with lots of citrus and oak in the finish. The pecan dried out the finish by bringing the oak tannins forward and maybe just a hint of wood fire smoke.
I picked a Nub Maduro cigar with this Bourbon I find the smoke to be rich tobacco with a bit of vanilla and cedar spice. The Bourbon adds a little citrus tang to the smoke while the cigar brought out the spice in the Bourbon. A nice pairing for a spring day on the porch.
Photos Courtesy of Rosemary Miller