The last selection of 2021 is a venerable Angel’s Envy single barrel. For 2021, the Angel’s Envy Private Selection program was coming out hot and spicy. Each barrel we were sent had a distinctly different profile with varying fruit and port influence levels. What also makes this program different is that Angel’s Envy does not allow the barrel strength bottling, presumably to not complete with their flagship cask strength edition. The company proofs down single barrel selections slightly, and the amount of the “proof down” varies for each selection based on each market. In New York, the proof down effect is less than in any other market, and this selection came in at 108 proof (the sample we tasted was 113.5 Proof) The winning barrel (#2980) stood out for several reasons. First, it has an incredible nose (more on that below) – it just blew other samples we tasted away right from the get-go. Second, the’ very bold flavor. Even though this is a manageable 108 Proof (by single barrel standards), it does drink a lot bolder than that. More specifically:
- Nose: Superb and complex. Port influence is very much there, and you also get distinct notes of maraschino cherries, raisinets, caramelized banana, marzipan. If you are a Starbucks drinker, you’ll get notes of their banana nut bread.
- Palate: Spice bomb! You’ll get allspice, dry orange peel/zest, white pepper, cocoa bibbs, and even bold espresso flavor.
- Finish: Medium to long. That spice stays with you for a minute.
Overall, if you are a fan of the brand or enjoy bold, high-proof bourbons (think Booker’s), you’d enjoy this one. The nose sets the tone for the winter season, and the palate takes it home. We could see ourselves savoring a cigar on a cold night on a back/front porch and enjoying this dram. This is also the first selection with a communal sticker. One of our supporters suggested the Cupid’s Share theme and it was voted as the best by the rest of you. The person who suggested it will receive a FREE bottle of this selection! We will do something similar again in 2022, so please send us your suggestions when you see a survey. Moreover, this is the first lenticular sticker – it gives an illusion of depth and changes the image when viewed from different angles! Check out the video to see it in action. We will continue to donate $5 from each bottle to the Western Kentucky Tornado Relief Fund. This was a no-brainer after seeing the devastation to the region all whiskey enthusiasts have a connection to.