I was in Dallas on business last week and visited Whiskey Cake, my favorite spot for a drink and bite to eat in the Frisco/Plano area. I decided to try something from Parker’s Heritage Collection. Each year Heaven Hill Distillery releases a special whiskey in the name of their late Master Distiller Parker Beam. I have never tried anything from the Parker Collection. To honor the great Parker Beam I thought I would try one of their releases. I selected the 8-year-old Malt Whiskey released in 2015.
If you are not familiar with Malt whiskey it is made from a fermented mash just like bourbon. Unlike bourbon which is 51% corn or higher, Malt is made from a malted grain, and this one is barley, 65% barley and 35% corn. Just like bourbon it must be aged in a new charred American Oak barrel.
This is one of the first American Malt’s I have experienced. It was really good. If you haven’t had experience with American Malt Whiskey’s you will be pleasantly surprised. There are many similarities to bourbon. It felt a little like drinking a scotch, then I thought, “no, it’s a little like a bourbon.” It has notes of butterscotch and toffee, and you get the sweetness from the corn. You can definitely taste the oak. It has a mellow rich flavor and is a very smooth whiskey with a soft finish.
I was originally going to try the 8th Edition 13 year old “Wheat” whiskey but they had sold the last of it. I never would have picked it first but glad the wheat was sold out. I’ve never been a big fan of scotch or European malts, but I’m glad I tried this. I’m looking forward to trying more Malt Whiskey in the future. It’s a unique experience. If this becomes the benchmark for American malts we are in for some fun experiences.
Aged: 8 years
Proof: 108 proof
Aroma: Oak, pine
Taste: Toffee, butterscotch
Price: $100 (When Released in late 2015; you can find resale bottles at nice liquor stores like Hi-Time Wine Cellars)