Barbershop Tasting w/ ECBP B517 ECBP Hirsch 20yr

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Lovely event at the New York Shaving Company today with friends, clients and three delicious whiskies…

Elijah Craig 18 bottled 2.4.17 Barrel #4339, 90 Proof
When first opened it was tight and very medicinal. After an hour it opened up with nutmeg, Christmas tree, butterscotch and almond butter. Tastes lovely with a touch more oak than I would have liked. Mouthfeel medium. Of all the EC18s I’ve had, this one is in the middle. Solid but not amazing. Still good price for the age though. 88/100

Hirsch Selection American Whiskey 20yrs, 96 proof
Distilled from Bourbon mash 2.27.1987 in Illinois and bottled in Weston, MO. I’d never seen this on the shelf before and for $100 I thought it was worth the gamble. This was another one that reeked of nail polish when first opened but after sitting for an hour evolved. Sweet nose of marshmallows, Skittles, stewed carrots with brown sugar, portobello mushrooms and cake frosting. The taste is quite a bit more bitter than the nose though with only an ok mouthfeel. The finish loses the sweetness almost immediately. The promise on the nose fades almost immediately; too bad. 80/100.

Elijah Craig Barrel Proof B517 124.2 Proof WA 2017 #1
Great color and awesome powerful nose. You can tell it’s Cask strength but doesn’t burn your nostrils either. Brown sugar cookies, lots of wood, creme brûlée, cinnamon, allspice and graham cracker s’mores. Terrific mouthfeel on this one, totally coats the tongue in all the right places, lots of sweet and savory flavors for a long finish that never gets bitter. The heat is there but incredibly smooth for the Proof. This is an excellent Bourbon. I wouldn’t have it as my number one, but adjusted for price it’s up there. Absolutely worth picking up if you can find it close to retail (under $100). I paid $80 for this one. 96/100.

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2 thoughts on “Barbershop Tasting w/ ECBP B517 ECBP Hirsch 20yr

  1. Thanks for the reviews. Curious – you’ve noted an hour time frame for these to really open up and allow the offerings to shine. Is this an open bottle for an hour or poured in a glass for an hour? I’m interested because all too often we want to pour and drink and often times that pour is better near the bottom of the glass than in the beginning – especially if it’s a freshly opened bottle. We’re lucky to let a glass rest for 15 minutes before we dive in! I can get behind some patience if it’s going to make a difference. Interested in your thoughts. That said, the EC B517 is an amazing bottle. Mine is more than half gone and remains one of my all time fav’s.

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    • I find most bottles need some air after opening. The EC18 was a great example. I had it again last night and even better, but still same score. The Hirsch was still not great.

      The bottle that was the biggest difference for me was the 1920 Forester. When first opened it was ok but after being opened for six months it mellowed and was incredible.

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