Review No.5. Four Roses Single Barrel Bourbon

I am a fan of bourbon as they offer me an alternative to scotch whisky when I fancy something a bit different.  Four Roses carry a big reputation mainly due to its master distiller who retired a year or so ago.  Jim Rutledge has huge respect from within the industry and amongst critics.  This is a single barrel, which is like a single cask whisky (see article 3) so each bottle may not taste identical if they are from different casks.  I tried this early on in my whisky journey and probably went in too hard and too quick with this one because at 50%, this is strong.


Whisky: Four Roses Single Barrel Bourbon, 50% vol.

Nose: Alcohol tinges my nose.  Lots of cherry with some vanilla.  Hints of strawberry and cinnamon spice

Taste: Cherry and then a range of sweet spices such as cinnamon and clove.  Some Oak at the back end.

Finish: Long, the spice lingers for a while with the oak influence really showing in the aftertaste.

Score: 3.5

Summary: I regret trying this so early in my journey, now a few years on I think I would be able to pick more flavours and handle the 50% better.   Cherry and spice summarise this bourbon well for me, water helps soften the alcohol without comprising the flavour.  If you are a beginner then approach with caution. If you have tried stronger whiskies/bourbons and are yet to try this then I would strongly recommend that you do.  A purchase for me is long overdue.


Scoring scale: My scores reflect a balance of the overall experience, availability and cost for a whisky,

1 – not to my preference

2 – tastes fine but does not excite me

3 – more to my liking and would revisit occasionally

4 – very much to my liking and would consider as a regular feature on my whisky shelf

5 – permanent feature on my whisky shelf


Image source: