Four Roses Distillery has a reputation for excellence. They recently received their 3rd consecutive award for “Whiskey Distiller of the Year – America” by Whiskey Magazine’s international judging panel. As a matter of fact, they have won 4 of the last 6 years. In 2010 they also won the Silver Medal at the San Francisco World Spirits Competition. Not too shabby if I don’t say so myself. What does this tell us? They have a commitment to excellence. That commitment ensures that every bottle of Four Roses “Yellow Label” that you buy off the shelf is just as delicious as the next bottle.
All this being said, I would recommend stopping by and taking a visit to the Four Roses Distillery the next time you are passing through Kentucky, or make a special trip. It’s always enlightening to see one of your favorite products being created. Siz, Jeremy, and I will be celebrating Siz’s upcoming nuptials in Louisville next week as a matter of fact. On Friday we will be touring some distillery’s and Four Roses Bourbon will be one of those. I’m really looking forward to it.
The Four Roses Distillery was built in 1910 and features a unique Spanish Mission-Style architecture rarely seen in Kentucky. Definitely makes for a unique experience. Like a good mellow bourbon the rumor is that your experience at the distillery will help mellow you out. Instead of a traditional Spanish siesta nap, pop in for a tour and a sampling of the bourbon. You can visit their website for further information regarding their tours. http://www.fourrosesbourbon.com/distillery-tour/
For a bourbon around $20, Four Roses Bourbon has a very pleasant aroma. The most apparent is Fruit and Floral. Apple and Rose Petal (might be a reach but hey gotta look for it given its name) are the most prominent. There is also a nice sweet Honey and Butterscotch smell as well with a little spice to balance it all out. I was trying to pick out a distinctive spice smell and I eventually settled on anise (similar to licorice). I got there because I finally resonated with a smell from my childhood. My mom used to buy me this gum called “Blackjack.” It is an aniseed flavored chewing gum produced by Cadbury, which makes a more recognized gum called “Chiclets.” You never know how you will end up recognizing some smells.
Four Roses Bourbon has a very pleasant flavor. It has a light texture that is easily consumed. The same profiles dominate as with the aroma. Fruit and Floral are the most dominant. In addition to the Apple and Rose Petal, I picked up some coconut. Along with butterscotch and honey there was a little dark chocolate as well. The biggest addition to the aroma was with the spice. Upon tasting the bourbon, the spice was more obvious. Cinnamon, clove, and anise worked to make the flavor profile well-rounded. The function behind the flavors helps you understand why Four Roses has been distiller of the year for 3 years running.
The texture and finish of Four Roses Bourbon create a pleasant experience. I think it’s best consumed over a few cubes of ice in a rocks glass. There is a pleasant heat that assists in mellowing you out after a long day. Overall, I’d give this bourbon an 8/10 due to the tremendous value at its $20 price point. Easily sipped or mixed.
Legend of Four Roses: A Ladies Touch
Not that I have spent a great deal of time pondering how Four Roses got it’s name but it is kind of curious. For those of you who have thought about opening a restaurant or bar, you probably spent a good deal of time thinking about what you would name it. You want it to represent your story as well as connect with the people that will enjoy your product. The name means a lot. For goodness sake, I spend over an hour, every year, thinking about what to name my fantasy football team. Four Roses’ name bears a tiny bit more significance than my fantasy team name, as great as it may be! Below is the story from the Four Roses website. Click around their website further to learn even more about their history and other great bourbons.
“It began when Paul Jones, Jr., the founder of Four Roses Bourbon, became smitten by the beauty of a Southern belle. It is said that he sent a proposal to her, and she replied that if her answer were “Yes,” she would wear a corsage of roses on her gown to the upcoming grand ball.
Paul Jones waited for her answer excitedly on that night of the grand ball…when she arrived in her beautiful gown, she wore a corsage of four red roses. He later named his Bourbon “Four Roses” as a symbol of his devout passion for the lovely belle, a passion he thereafter transferred to making his beloved Four Roses Bourbon.”
Cocktail: In Honor of Cinco De Mayo
Last weekend we celebrated a great tradition known as Cinco De Mayo. For those of you who don’t know a lick of Spanish, it falls on the 5th of May every year. Not too hard to keep track of as opposed to the other tricky holidays which are the first Monday or last Thursday and I kind of like that. I celebrated by having some chimichanga’s and some margarita’s. I wish I would have had this recipe before I bought the tequila. Bourbon has to make it better, no doubt. So give this official recipe from the Four Roses website try! I know I will.
Four Roses Rose’Rita
4 oz Margarita Mix
2 oz part Four Roses Yellow Label Bourbon®
Mix over ice
Add a dash of Grenadine – do not mix. The red color will settle near the bottom of the glass for a nice
multi-color effect. Garnish with two maraschino cherries, and enjoy.