Friday, July 21, 2023

Whiskey Wednesday: Penelope Four Grain Bourbon and Blackbird Quantum Habano

This week's Whiskey Wednesday episode is brought to you a couples days late. Life gets in the way and all that . . .

The evening saw me sitting down to enjoy my break just as a sudden rain storm appeared. Almost without warning the trees started rattling as the heavy rain fell. To my relief not only did the rain fall straight down without blowing into the porch, the temperature rapidly dropped 5 - 7 degrees. It was almost as if it was intended to make the sitting all that more pleasant. Penelope Four Grain Bourbon, a Blackbird Quantum Habano, and book completed the setting.

Penelope Four Grain Bourbon, as the name states, uses four different grains blended in three mash bills, ending up at 75% corn, 15% wheat, 7% rye, and 4% malted barley. The bottle I have sports a 26 month age statement, with the Penelope website claiming 2-3 years of aging. (Labeling requirements default by law to the youngest age included.) The bourbon is a mild 80 proof which makes it an excellent mid-week sipper. 

The pale golden liquid gives off aromas of sweet corn and vanilla. It's a soft aroma and a portent of things to come. Vanilla, oak, butterscotch with just the mildest of heat combine in the sipping. For a young bourbon, it's got a smooth, balanced flavor profile, though very mild and easy. There's a soft, creamy feel in the mouth. Overall, quite pleasant.

The Blackbird Quantum Habano is a My Cigar Pack exclusive made in collaboration with Blackbird Cigar Company that was included in the May monthly subscription. The cigar has a very dark Ecuador Habano wrapper, Mexican binder, with USA and Dominican fillers. Immediately the cigar hits a strong, rich flavor profile. There's dark coffee and wood with some twinge of sweetness. There's an overlying bitterness that makes me think of charred wood or even burnt coffee. I wouldn't describe it as unpleasant, but it is all encompassing. 

The stick started off with a very open draw and copious smoke. About a quarter of the way through after the stick heated up, the draw became constricted and smoke production decreased. I gently squeezed and massaged the area between the band and cap where it felt a little hard, and the cigar opened up full tilt. I only had the one example of the stick, which is often a drawback of the Cigar of the Month subscriptions. I'm somewhat interested in smoking another to see if the flavor experience was the same, but not interested enough to actually order any more.

With the rain quickly passed, and the temperature moderated, I was motivated poor a bit more of the Penelope Bourbon, and enjoy my book a while longer.


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