Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Three New Expressions From Black Dirt Bourbon - Stepping Away From the Pack And Into the Spotlight (NY)



It's funny, though I've known Jason and Jeremy since they were first small producers, making eau de vie fruit brandies, What's funny is that I don't think of Black Dirt Distillery as a micro distillery or a craft producer - I tend to think of them as a great producer. A great American producer. So I was especially pleased to see that they had taken the next big steps to join that group when they offered three new expressions of their exceptional Black Dirt Bourbon. I think this is an essential step in their claiming a bigger prize in the US bourbon hunt - a conversation, especially after these releases, they rightfully deserve to be in!


Three or more years ago, Black Dirt expanded in a huge way. They installed a whole new distillery and greatly expanded their repetoire. This new still allowed for great production, but also for greater refinement. Great days were ahead. The fruits of their labor were on the horizon.

Indeed, Black Dirt has released a dozen small individual expressions crafted from distinct grain ratios, aged in new charred oak, and then hand-selected when it’s unique flavor is perfect for savoring. This is exciting stuff!


Recently, I spent some time with Black Dirt ambassador Richard Scoffier, who poured me the three new releases. BLACK DIRT takes its name from the dark, fertile soil left by an ancient glacial lake that once covered Thousands of acres of upstate New York. Perfectly suited for growing crops such as corn, this Black Dirt has never been used for Bourbon production – until now. 


New York Straight Bourbon Whiskey 3 Year Blend First Batch Out of the new big column. This will be their main production bourbon. Thank god! Their bourbon has been in such demand that they couldn't keep up. This new cycle of production from the big still will hopefully fill all that, but sadly, more states are waiting for their turn at Black Dirt. Demand is sky rocketing! This is new production is a lovely, lovely bourbon, bursting with bright fruit, corn cereal, and honey and toffee, with hints of vanilla with a hint of spice at the end! Absolutely lovely. An excellent AMERICAN bourbon.


First was the Straight Bourbon Whiskey Single Barrel Port Wood Finish, Barrel Number: BD-PW1 (Double Cask). It was released on 03/07/17, and aged for 2 years, 2months in new charred American Oak (Char level 3) and then Re-barreled in Port barrels for 3 months. It was bottled at 100 proof, and distilled from: 80% Black Dirt grown corn, 10% Malted Barley, and 10% Rye. I loved this whiskey!!!! Big sweet mouth full of corn, caramel, figs and dates, and butter-toffee followed by a hint of gingerbread. A lovely, savory finish. Just head spinning. 


New York Straight Bourbon Barrel Single Barrel with a #4 char 53 gallon American oak barrel. Again, this bourbon, like the others, has a mashbill that is predominently corn, but with a solid spine of malted barley and a significant dash of rye to keep it honest and from being cloying. Barrel Number: AB10414-1 (Double Cask), was released on 12/30/16. It as aged for 2 years, 2 months in new charred American Oak (Char level 3).It was then re-barreled in Apple Jack barrels for 1 month!
And then bottled at "Barrel Strength." OMG! Bourbon heaven! Big caramel, toffee, baked apple, chocolate, and even a slight hint of pear and figs, ends with a lovely, long lasting finish that has a hint of gingerbread and more caramel and some vanilla. A splash of water, and it's an aromatic paradise!!!!

With this new round of expressions, and their increasing volume (as their whiskey improves!!!!) signals a whole new stage of growth for Black Dirt Distilling. I confirm that they are no regional producer (prod as they are to be from New York), indeed, Black Dirt is now poised and positioned to be considered a producer of the highest rank, that can now be sold in numerous states across the country. They offer a premium bourbon experience, at a level that places them in the national conversation, Kentucky an Tennessee be damned! (not really, but you know what I mean!). They are making great quality whiskey. Bourbon worth searching out. Bourbon worth savoring next to the best of them!!!

The spotlight is on Black Dirt Bourbon!


Here are some of their other expression releases:

Barrel Number: CRB073013
Aged for 2 years, 4 months in new charred American Oak
Released on 12/07/16
Char level 3
Format: 750ml, Proof: 100
Distilled from:
70% Black Dirt grown corn,
15% Malted Barley
15% Crystal malted Rye

Barrel Number: DO10514-1 (Double Cask)
Released on 11/15/16
Aged for 26 months in new charred American Oak
Char level 3
Re-barreled in new Char #4 for 1 month
Proof: 100
Distilled from:
80% Black Dirt grown corn,
10% Malted Barley
10% Rye

Barrel Number: BD-821145-5 (Double Barrel)
Released on 10/20/16
Aged for 25 months in new charred American Oak
Char level 3
Re-barreled in new Char #4 for 1 month
Proof: 100
Distilled from:
80% Black Dirt grown corn,
10% Malted Barley
10% Rye

Barrel Number: BDB81214-2
Released on 9/13/16
Aged for 2 years in new charred American Oak
Char level 3
Proof: 100
Distilled from:
80% Black Dirt grown corn,
10% Malted Barley
10% Rye

Barrel Number: BDB10614-1
Released on 5/19/16
Aged for 2 years in new charred American Oak
Char level 3
Distilled from:
80% Black Dirt grown corn,
10% Malted Barley
10% Rye

Barrel Number: 071113
Aged for 2 years, 4 months in new charred American Oak
Char level 3
Distilled from:
70% Black Dirt grown corn,
15% Malted Barley
15% Crystal malted Rye

Barrel Number: 042413
Aged for 2 years, 3 months in new charred American Oak
Char level 3
Distilled from:
80% Black Dirt grown corn,
12% Malted Barley
8% Crystal malted Rye

Barrel Number: CW102412
Bottled on Feb 4th, 2015
Aged for 2 years, 3 months in new charred American Oak
Char level 3
Distilled from:
60% Black Dirt grown corn,
10% Malted Barley
30% Unmalted Wheat

Barrel Number: 052212
Aged for 2 years, 3 months in new charred American Oak
Char level 3
Distilled from:
60% Black Dirt grown corn,
10% Malted Barley
30% Unmalted Wheat

Barrel Number: 021512
Aged for 2 years, 5 days in new charred American Oak
Char level 3
Distilled from:
80% Black Dirt grown corn,
12% Malted Barley
8% Crystal malted Rye