Classification: Blend of Straight Bourbons
Company: Barrell Craft Spirits
Distillery: Sourced (from undisclosed distilleries in Tennessee, Kentucky, Indiana, Ohio, Wyoming, New York, and Texas)
Release Date: December 2021
Age: NAS (Blend of 5, 6, 7, 9, and 14 year old barrels per company’s website)
Color: Dark Amber
MSRP: $90 (2022)
Fruit punch | Peach | Vanilla | Graham cracker | Kettle corn
Red raspberry | Black cherry | White pepper | Touch of hazelnut | Pinch of clove | Creamy
Brown sugar | Stone fruit | Oak spice | Fudge | Light tobacco | Rich caramel
Barrell Craft Spirits celebrates the start of each new year with a limited release that is “a tribute to the fresh possibilities and sense of renewal that every new year brings.” Barrell’s New Year releases tend to swing a bit harder and wilder than their ongoing batch releases. With releases of this sort, sometimes they work well and other times they struggle to make a lasting impact.
This year’s Barrell Bourbon New Year release is notable because of its inclusion of straight bourbons from seven different states. Maybe this was a personal challenge or maybe someone bet the Barrell Craft Spirits team they couldn’t pull it off, but this blend would have been a tall order for any blender.
New Year 2022 seems to have a lot in common with Barrell Bourbon Batch 031, which may or may not have acted as a base. Building off Batch 031, its layers of Ohio, Wyoming, New York, and Texas bourbon on top is what makes this whiskey such a rousing sip. There’s a lot going on with this New Year’s release. On one hand it can be hard to wrap your head around its individual parts, yet Barrell has made it come together as a cohesive whiskey. Despite its many contrasting elements, there’s a balance between its bright summer fruit and its darker fruits, all while featuring an undertow of clove, brown sugar, fudge, and oak spice. Somehow Barrell Craft Spirits pulled it off, Barrell Bourbon New Year 2022 is a dynamic and complex whiskey that will dazzle you with each sip.