Today we are tasting the Pot Still Reserve from Willett. It checks in at 94 proof with no age statement that we could find. If you have never seen this stuff, it comes in what has to be one of the coolest bottles out there. Looks like a wine decanter, and we both have actually used it for that.
While hard to find at times, it can be found in most liquor stores that have a good Bourbon selection. Usually around the $40 range, even though we have seen it higher.
Todd: It has a pretty strong nose, with grain, oak and alcohol the most prominent. This is followed by a toffee like sweetness.
Ron: I got a lot more on the nose than Todd. I could detect leather, pine, cedar as well as caramel and like Todd, alcohol.
Todd: Tasting it neat first, as we both do, I thought it was a little rough, especially at that price. While I could taste some of the sweetness, it mostly just tasted hot. On the other hand, let a cube or two of ice melt a little in the glass and you have a very different Whiskey. Now the sweet toffee and oak have a chance to shine.
Ron: Tasting neat I thought a little hot, but still had nuances of spice and wood. Adding one rock, and letting it almost melt, brought out vanilla, even more spice and just an over all mellowness that I enjoyed.
Todd: It has a pretty long finish neat or with rocks. I still had a lingering taste 60 seconds after sipping.
Ron: The Pot Still Reserve has a nice long warm finish.
Todd: This is what I categorize as a traditional Bourbon, meaning it is Corn, Rye, with a little barley. Also a fairly complex drink.
Ron: I definitely enjoyed my glass and would buy again.
Nose 3 out of 5
Taste 7 out of 10
Finish 4 out of 5
Total Score 14 out of 20 Barrels
This one was a hard one for us. At 94 proof we shouldn’t have to add so much water to bring out the taste. On the other hand, it is pretty good stuff once the water is added. There is also the issue of price. At $20, this might just be our go to classic style Bourbon, at $40, not so sure. There is a lot of good Bourbon in that $40 range.
This is still a Bourbon we would recommend having a bottle of in your collection. As said, it is sometimes hard to find and has a real cool bottle to impress your friends with.