Store Picks: Four Roses Barrel Strength SB OESF – Red Wagon Shoppe Pick
Pick Information - This offering was chosen by the team at Red Wagon Shoppe in Auburn Hills, MI. This barrel was picked from samples provided by their reps. This pick is barrel proof and bottled at 107.4 proof. This sample was provided to me by Blake Johnson. Follow Blake on Instagram @whiskeyblake.sparty
Color – Color is a light amber. I was not given the age on this bottling but appearance tells me probably less than 9 years, maybe less than 8 which a few of the Four Roses picks are.
Nose – I get a doughy nose up front followed by some baking spice, fruit notes, and some floral.
Palate – Up front I get good stone fruit notes at the front as well as cinnamon and a mint note. Light on the front of the palate for a 107.4 proof. Good mouthfeel for the most part.
Finish - The finish is sneaky long. You think it is going to be more of a medium finish and then a little minty hug at the very end reminds you it is still there. I get more of that fruit and some oak on the finish.
Wallet – All of the Four Roses BsSb store pics I have seen have always been around the $59.99-$64.99 range. Their normal single barrel is closer to $42-46. The many different mash-bill and yeast strain recipes, along with the barrel strength proof, makes the extra $15-20 worth it.
Head to Head – Unless you are comparing one store pick of the exact same recipe combination to another store’s pick, it is almost impossible to compare. What I would say is that Four Roses private barrel picks are very tricky due the different combinations so I would suggest tasting samples from the store and friends to find the right combination for the flavor profile you enjoy.
Bourbon Wes says – Overall, I am not as big a fan of the OESF as I am with some of the other combinations. That being said, for a store pick chosen from rep samples, I have had much worse. If this bottle was mine, I would share it with friends and finish it but probably move to another recipe in the future.
Rating (tasting notes + price point + uniqueness) – I would rate this store pick a 6 out of 10.
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Ratings System: 1-2 – Would not suggest to anyone. Literally not drinkable neat.
3-5 - Solid pour but not considered special. Would not purchase second bottle
6-8 - Excellent pour. Robust, interesting, and different compared to regular offering.
9-10 - Outstanding. Hunt for multiple bottles. On par with allocated releases.