Rock Hill Farms Single Barrel Bourbon Review
By: Fork & Stave
Proof: 100 Proof (50% ABV), No Age Statement
Difficult to find in many markets, Rock Hill Farms Single Barrel Bourbon is not a whiskey that I had the opportunity to try until early this year. I’ll admit, the bottle caught my eye and was what prompted me to look into the source of this bourbon before my purchase. It may surprise some readers that this bourbon has been on the market since 1990. According to Sour Mash Manifesto, it shares the same high rye BT #2 mash bill as Blanton’s and Elmer T. Lee. As I mentioned above, there is no age statement on the bottle or on the Buffalo Trace website. Caskers website shows that is it aged “about 8 years”.
From the Buffalo Trace Distillery website:
Named for the rich farmland along the Kentucky River, this 100 proof Single Barrel Bourbon Whiskey honors its Bluegrass roots, defined by rich tradition and smooth bourbon.
I’ve noticed that the price of Rock Hill Farms tends to be in the $50 range here in the Southeast, if you can find it. That puts it in among very competitive company. Let’s see if the experience measures up to the price tag of this seasoned veteran whiskey.
Tasting Notes: After letting it breathe for 10 minutes, I tasted this bourbon neat.
Nose: Rock Hill Farms Single Barrel Bourbon opens up with notes of dried fruit and sweet vanilla cream. I also get some citrus, spice, clove, mint, leather, and oak as I repeatedly sample from my glass. Most drinkers will notice the bouquet open up and begin to change well past the 10 minute mark as the spirit breathes.
First Sip: The first taste of this whiskey is remarkably balanced with no one taste profile taking the drivers seat. Different, for me, was the delay of the sweet notes from the corn, which are usually the first kids on the bus. I noticed the sweetness and spice almost simultaneously along with the dried fruit flavors, dark chocolate, and oak astringency. The rye spice is very nice. For a 100 proof whiskey, this player is one smooth customer.
Mouth Feel: The whiskey completely coats your mouth. This bourbon has an outstanding silky smooth character.
Finish: The finish is shorter than I would prefer, but leaves the palate feeling clean and dry. The astringency from the oak tannins is not overpowering. I think seasoned bourbon drinkers will look for a little more here.
Summary: I was very happy with this bourbon. With a smooth character and unique flavor profile, it will surely not disappoint most of the readers of this blog. The single barrel bourbon does have a finish that left me wanting more. The price point of Rock Hill Farms bourbon means you will have some decisions to make if you’re lucky enough to see this whiskey on the shelf of your local spirit retailer.