I knew I was going to love Bulleit Bourbon the moment I found out that it was distilled by the team at the Four Roses Distillery. Brands that don’t own their own distillery (like Bulleit) and are instead contract distilled by someone else can be a mixed bag. Some are average or worse. Some are fabulous. Four Roses is one of those distillers that tends toward the fabulous side.
Bulleit is distilled based on a recipe that has been in the Bulleit family since the 1800′s. They used to distill and sell to the public, but that ceased by the turn of the century. Lucky for us all, the Bulleit family passed the recipe through the generations even when not actively distilling. In 1987, Tom Bulleit restarted production and released the product on the market in the late 1990′s. Bulleit Bourbon is somewhat unique based on the high rye content in its mash bill (28%). The rye adds some spiciness both to the aroma where it pairs nicely with vanilla and in the taste where it blends with oak and honey. This is an incredibly smooth, succulent bourbon with a dry finish.
I really like Bulleit Bourbon. It goes just as well neat as it does in a cocktail. That versatility helps it more than justify the $30 price. You should pick up a bottle when you go to the bourbon store next and enjoy it for yourself!