American Whiskey Reviews #70: Noah’s Mill
Bottler: Kentucky Bourbon Distillers/Willett
Color: 1.4, Tawny.
Nose (according to the wife): Up front is a big dose of oak. It’s followed by a few sweeter notes. There’s caramel and molasses with a bit vanilla and cinnamon. A note of crème brûlée pops in as well with the slightly charred sugar notes coming through nicely.
Palate: At full strength, it’s a fairly straightforward whisky. You get a strong cherry and generic “bourbon-y” flavor up front with a bit of a brown sugar caramel. With a little bit of water, some nice and nutty notes come out. The brown sugar caramel turns into more of a peanut brittle with the perfect balance of sweet, nuttiness, and saltiness to go around. With a little more water, these notes that remind me a lot of a traditional Korean cinnamon punch (수정과/sujeonggwa) start coming through. There’s a bit of sugar, a bit of dried fruit, some cinnamon and some nuttiness that’s and overall very refreshing package. A hint vanilla comes in and out as well.
Finish: Medium to short in length. In the first few sips, there’s a nice note of cream that lingered for a second but it isn’t present as you have some more. There’s a note of very boozey cherries with some cinnamon on it. After some water has been added, I’m reminded heavily of those little root beer barrel candies.
Conclusion: I’ve found myself more than once staring at a bottle of Noah’s Mill on the shelf wondering what about this whisky might command the ~$55-60 price tag. It doesn’t carry an age statement nor does it carry the name of the distillery that made it. What this might seemingly lack in specs, it seems to make up for in the flavor department. The nose starts off quite inviting with some dryer oak notes pairing well with the sweeter dessert notes of caramel and crème brûlée. At full strength, this whisky seems particularly shy but it opens up quite beautifully with some water added. The bits of peanut brittle and cinnamon punch are fantastic and the hints of vanilla and cherry help round this out. The finish is a little too boozey for my tastes and I’m not a major fan of the root beer barrel candies that come out with some water. Overall, it’s a pretty good whisky and one I’d be happy to have on the shelf.
Final Score: 83.
American Whiskey Review #70, Bourbon Review #56, Whisky Network Review #325
- 96-100: The perfect dram, nectar of the gods.
- 90-95: Near perfect, there is something truly special about this whisky.
- 85-89: Amazing, will always try to keep a bottle of this in my collection (if feasible).
- 80-84: Very Good, maybe only one minor nitpick about the whisky keeping it here.
- 75-79: Good, quite enjoyable to drink.
- 70-74: Solid, wouldn’t go out of my way to get it.
- 60-69: Meh, still drinkable.
- Below 59: If you have a bottle of this, start cooking with it instead.