Before we even get into the tasting notes, can we tip our hats to the bad ass canister that every bottle of Col. E.H. Taylor comes in? The label is reminiscent of an old bank note. (Once upon a time, each bank was allowed to print it’s own money). The canister is to the bourbon what the toy is to the cereal box – for me at least.
To be such a young bourbon (there is no age statement, but the consensus is that the barrel proof is at 8 years old) CEHT is a nice, dark, amber color. Swirling it creates long, syrupy legs – an indicator of a big bodied bourbon.
The nose is anything but syrup. In fact, it is a little musty and unpleasant what with the high alcohol content and the concentration of aromas coming out of the glencairn. Any more alcohol coming out of the glass would singe nose hairs.
Surprisingly, the first sip is rich and sweet. The pepper and smoke is present in a big way, as is the alcohol – which is to be expected. CEHT is made from Buffalo Trace’s Mash Bill #1, meaning it uses 10% rye as the secondary grain. Its definitely noticeable. The full mouth tingle that is often present in rye whiskeys is all there.
CEHT is rough going down, but that finish! To say that the finish is long is an understatement. The viscosity of CEHT is such that all of the flavors stick to your palate, mellowing out into fruit and allspice flavors long after you sip it.
If this bourbon were a person, it would be John Wayne – big, bold, and relentless. CEHT beats your tail from nose to taste, and pats you on the back in the finish.