c. 2017 release: Nose... what nose? Palate... what palate? Wait, there it is... ah yes, that's awful. Soapy. Blecchhh. What happened to this brand?! D+
c. 2007 release: Some wood in the nose, milk caramels, and multigrain bread. Good rich flavors of big bourbony vanillas, and this becomes prominent as vanilla cake batter in the finish. Except for the tails of the finish which falter a bit, this is good bourbon. And what a price! At cask strength! Why wouldn't you buy a bottle of this?! B
This is my best buy of bourbon. In the low $30 range I think it competes with bourbon in the $40-50 range. Straight, it is a hot nose with lots of oak and caramel. The palette is smoother than the nose. Even at barrel proof, it's smooth. Leather, caramel, sweet corn, molasses. Also hot! Can be good without water in winter. Infinite finish. But Rare Breed is my summer drink because it is one of the few whiskeys that can pour over a glass of ice and still have amazing flavor while being refreshing. On ice, it's lemon cake with cool cream. I'm not big on icing whiskey, but this is a refreshing exception.
N: Very light, oak, some fruit, but then a peculiar off note. P: Black liquorice and vanilla. F: Substantial but again that funky note emerges. Overall not bad, but there is something funny lurking in the nose and finish, like multigrain bread that just doesn't go well with the others flavors.
Sweet caramel on the nose, with some Cognac and wood. The flavor has both sweetness and spice in equal measures, with a good measure of wood. A few drops of water really brings out the wood in this one, as well as some pine, mint and banana flavors. Very drinkable and pleasant and as others have said, a great value. I almost want to give it a B+ as a sheer simple delight, but I think on quality it really merits a B.
n: rich buttery nose; butterbrickle, fried dill pickles, rye toast. Oak char and smoked corn chowder, but still sharp alcohol. This has a very enjoyable aroma full of what makes bourbon smell so appetizing.
t: warm and spicy with a hearty charred oak kick that's not on the corn-sweet side, this is a little more sophisticated with a good amount of spice, but does run hot. Has spearmint and a roasted peanut side to it that I like. The finish is burnt vanilla and more dry oak (almost turning bitter). Not as deep and complex as the nose, but has a nice flavor profile that doesn't disappoint. Wild Turkey did well with this and I like the high ABV with price. [B/B+ solid, good stuff]