Corsets, Whips & Whiskey is a 100% wheat whiskey made by the Journeyman Distillery in Three Oaks, Michigan. Its name is derived from the fact that the distillery is located in a building that was once a corset and buggy whip factory back in the 19th century. Journeyman Distillery is what I consider a rising star in the distilling industry. I have yet to find a product from them that was not well crafted and worth the price. This whiskey is no exception.
It is made from 100% wheat but they do not state whether they malted some of the wheat or used enzymes for the conversion of grain starch to sugar to feed the fermentation. I suspect it is enzymes otherwise they would have mentioned wheat malt on the label. The whiskey has a very nice light amber color and is bottled at cask strength, but even so, the alcohol is not a dominating factor in the flavor. A few drops of water do help bring out some of the flavors in the whiskey, but I based my tasting notes on drinking it neat. I do recommend that you try it both ways.
Corsets, Whips & Whiskey Wheat Whiskey
Age: No Age Statement
Nose: A very nice nose with rich caramel with just a hint of chocolate, some ripe apples and sweet oak.
Taste: Caramel and that hint of chocolate, with some apple, fine leather and sweet oak – not very tannic at all. When tasted with a dried cranberry, some citrus notes of orange zest compliment the apple notes quite nicely. When tasted with a pecan, there is a tartness added by bringing out citrus notes of orange and lemon zest and the oak becomes a little more tannic.
Finish: The finish is medium long and dry with sweet oak; think saw dust not tannic char, and hints of fine leather. The dried cranberry made the finish very short and much sweeter with caramel being the dominant flavor. The pecan made the finish very long and tart with lots of citrus and oak.
I am pairing this whiskey with an Esteban Carreras “Unforgiven” Sumatra Toro Grande cigar. The cigar was aged for two years in an 18 year old rum barrel and I find the smoke sweet with notes of coffee and vanilla with the smallest hint of rum caramel and some cedar spice. I thought it would compliment this wheat whiskey very nicely and I was correct. The whiskey brought out the caramel and cedar spice in the smoke but not overly so, keeping the flavors well balanced. The smoke brought out the chocolate notes in the whiskey and added a note of coffee with cream. I enjoyed this pairing a lot.
Photos Courtesy of Rosemary Miller