Calumet Farm has a rich history in the equine industry in Kentucky. They have produced two Triple Crown winners, eight Kentucky Derby winners, eight Preakness winners and eleven horses in the National Museum of Racing Hall of Fame. All of these achievements made since 1924. It is only natural that a Bourbon would be named for this historic farm.
Bourbon and horse racing have been tied together for over a century and a half. There have been many brands named for horses and Old Rosebud, the 1914 Kentucky Derby winning horse, was named for a Bourbon brand. Before Prohibition, L. Weis & Co. created the Kentucky Derby brand in 1889 and Block, Franck & Co. created the Kentucky Oaks brand in 1882. There was even a Calumet Club brand created by Stause Bros. in 1887, almost forty years before Calumet Farm was established.
Calumet Farm Single Rack Black gets its name because the barrels aged for this whiskey all came from a single rack in the center of the warehouse. There were 19 barrels of this 15 year old whiskey. The whiskey was made in March 2006 with a mash bill of 74% corn, 18% rye and 8% malted barley. It has not been chill filtered and was bottled at 105 proof by Three Springs Bottling Company of Bowling Green, Kentucky. Matt and I tasted this Bourbon and here are our tasting notes.
Calumet Farm Single Rack Black
Age: Fifteen Years Old
- Mike: Vanilla with a hint of caramel, pear fruit and oak tannins.
- Matt: Lots of oak with ginger spice and caramel.
- Mike: Vanilla, pears, ginger and cinnamon spices and lots of oak tannins, but not too much. Another year in the wood would have made this whiskey bitter. Tasted with a dried cranberry and the pear is enhanced and a little lemon zest comes out to join the pear. The spice becomes a black pepper spice. Tasted with a pecan and the vanilla becomes a rich caramel with ginger and pepper spice.
- Matt: Caramel and vanilla with ginger spice and a hint of cola and lots of oak. The dried cranberry brought out orange zest and French vanilla with just a hint of spice. The pecan gave it an oily mouth-feel with caramel and cinnamon spice.
- Mike: Long and dry with oak tannins and spice. The dried cranberry made the spice a very peppery spice. The pecan made the finish even drier with oak and pepper.
- Matt: Long with lots of oak with nutmeg and allspice. The dried cranberry reduced the spice and the oak dominated the finish. The pecan brought out some cinnamon spice and oak.
I would pair this Bourbon with a cigar that is robust in flavor. Vanilla and caramel with cedar spiciness in the smoke would enhance the flavor in the Bourbon. I would reach for a RoMa Craft Intemperance BA.
Photos Courtesy of Rosemary Miller