SBC #83 Red Line Elements Amburana Finish “Bear Hug”

Breaking Bourbon Award Winning Single Barrel Club picks are selected by Breaking Bourbon, and whenever possible with the help of Patreon supporters. The bottles are made available to Patreon supporters first by pledge tier. If any bottles remain after all supporters have had an opportunity to purchase, they are made available to the public on a first come, first served basis. Each barrel is sponsored by a retailer partner, who sells the bottles directly to end purchasers.

Retailer Partner: Seelbach’s

Classification: Straight Bourbon Finished in an Amburana Barrel

Company: Red Line Whiskey, LLC

Distillery: MGP

Age: 5 Years

Proof: 115

Mashbill: 75% Corn, 21% Rye, 4% Malted Barley

Yield: 228 Bottles

Release Date: September 2023


Red Line Whiskey was founded by a father and son team with over 30 years of fine wine and liquor industry experience and gave their whiskey its name from the “Red Line,'' which is the caramelized layer of sugars that develops just beneath the char of a barrel.

First released in November 2022 and just in Missouri, the Elements line is planned to be released in more states in 2023. According to the company, the Elements line is a “journey of exploration and discovery, unveiling the unique flavors and expressions of different oaks from around the world.” With bourbon, barrels are traditionally made from new white oak, however, “there are hundreds of species of oak found across the globe just waiting to be stumbled upon.”

We really enjoyed the first standard Red Line Elements release, which leaned heavily on its Amburana finish, giving way to strong notes of gingerbread, cinnamon, and spice. Amburana is a species of tree native to Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Paraguay, and Peru. Amburana wood has a tight grain, and has been traditionally used to age Cachaca (though most Cachaca is aged in oak), a popular Brazilian spirit made from fermented sugarcane juice. Amburana is also used for lumber, and more recently craft brewers have taken a liking to it.

Amburana is experiencing a surge in popularity within the American whiskey space. Because it imparts such unique and recognizable flavors into whiskey, it’s become somewhat controversial. Whether it’s a flash in the pan or just the tip of the Amburana iceberg is yet to be seen, however we have really been enjoying the unique, expressive flavors offered by Amburana finished whiskeys, and so we reached out to Red Line Whiskey Company to select a barrel for our club.

We worked with company founder Taylor Morley to find some barrels with that delicious gingerbread flavor profile we enjoyed so much about their standard release. And he delivered. We tasted a range of barrels, but ultimately went with the barrel that showcases the gingerbread, cinnamon, and spice flavors driven by the Amburana finish really well. The Amburana finish also seems to take really well to the underlying MGP bourbon, which seems to provide a sturdy base, but doesn’t push through any competing flavors.

Because of its intensity, we nicknamed this pick “Bear Hug,” and it’s a must have for fans of Amburana finished bourbons.

Tasting Notes

Nose: Gingerbread | Cinnamon | Earthy undertone | Punchy

Palate: Gingerbread cookies | Pie crust | Cornbread | Baking spices | Creamy mouthfeel | Leans into Amburana finish

Finish: Allspice | Cinnamon | Pie crust | Graham cracker | Maple sugar candy | Lingering spice

About Seelbach’s

For this pick, we partnered with spirits retailer Seelbach’s, which was founded by Blake Riber, also the creator of Bourbonr and the Bourbonr Facebook group. An online-only retailer with a twist, we interviewed Riber to discuss how he’s running his shop differently than everyone else. “Unlocking Craft Spirits” he calls it - seeking out up-and-coming craft distilleries and learning about their process and tasting through their products to find hidden gems.

Distillers, Producers, and Retailers: If you would like to be a part of this program and get your name in front of millions of bourbon enthusiasts, contact us.

Please note these bottles will not be sold by Breaking Bourbon, but will be sold by retailers we partner with in order to fulfill the orders and ship the bottles directly to Patreon supporters. Breaking Bourbon will receive no compensation from our partner retailers under these agreements (with the exception of a bottle from each barrel for editorial purposes). If you represent a retailer and ship to consumers and you’re interested in partnering just let us know!

Written By: BB Team

September 11, 2023
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