Classification: Straight Bourbon Finished in Sherry and Toasted Barrels
Company: New Holland Spirits
Distillery: New Holland Brewing Company
Release Date: November 2023
Age: NAS (Company’s website states aged more than 5 years before finishing)
Mashbill: 70% Corn, 25% Malted Barley, 5% Rye
Color: Red Amber
MSRP: $90 / 750mL (2023)
Bright citrus | Blueberry | Apple pastry | Vanilla custard undertone
Allspice | Cherry pie | Baking spices | Charred oak | Slight almond | Apricot
Spice up front | Allspice | Orange zest | Medium length
New Holland’s 2023H “Fireside Conversations” adds a sherry barrel finish, but stays on profile for the brand.
New Holland Brewing Company has a unique style that I first noticed in 2021 with their Bottled in Bond Batch 01 release. They distill on a prohibition era pot still as opposed to the more common column still. The bourbon has a mashbill that swaps the typical rye and malted barley percentages, with 25% malted barley and only 5% rye. This often results in a bourbon that has a lively flavor profile with unique summer fruit and citrus notes. Their toasted series takes that one step further, finishing in toasted barrels. For this single barrel release, they also finished in a sherry barrel, making this a triple-barreled bourbon. 2023H is one of four expressions that will be released at the company’s New Holland Pubs and New Holland Tasting Rooms on Saturday, November 18th.
2023H, which was nicknamed “Fireside Conversations,” highlights Dragon’s Milk’s unique underlying flavor profile similar to previous toasted barrel finished single barrels I’ve tasted. It has that quintessential bright citrus note, along with apricot, vanilla (in the form of custard), and spice up front on the finish. While the proof is the highest of the four expressions being released together this fall, the whiskey drinks on the lighter side in comparison to the others. I struggled to pull out flavors specifically driven by the sherry finish, though it is possible its main contribution was helping smooth out the bourbon’s rougher edges. Ultimately, “Fireside Conversations” is an immediately likable expression for Dragon’s Milk Origin fans and a highly drinkable one at that.