Mel, Albert, and Who Did You Say?

Ezra Brooks 99 Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey

Lux Row Distillers

I don’t know too many Ezras.  I have a couple of Better Than Ezra cd’s stored away in the basement somewhere.  I remember reading about American poet Ezra Pound in some Reader’s Digest “Unbelievable But True” type book.  Then there’s the Book of Ezra from the Hebrew Bible.  Still, it’s not a name you happen upon every day.  Well, every day is today as we bump into Ezra Brooks 99 Proof Bourbon.  EB99 is the newest whiskey in Lux Row’s Ezra Brooks lineup.  There isn’t an age statement; however, since it’s a straight bourbon, it’s at least over 4 years old as anything younger than that would require an age statement.  What is on the label is the statement: “Distilled and aged in Kentucky for Lux Row Distillers.  Ok – it’s a sourced whiskey.  For me, it doesn’t matter and at least there’s some transparency.

As for something that has more colour, EB99 has a rich, burnished chestnut tone to it.  The soft, warm glow of this bourbon certainly looked inviting.  On the nose, you felt the presence of the 49.5% abv.  Rather than muggy Kentucky heat, it was the same warm glow I “felt” from seeing EB99 in my glass.  It was warm but it wasn’t hot.  It’s more like sweet warmth with vanilla, caramel, and cornbread loaf.  The char also comes though, not intensely but rather like a hint of ash.  There’s a bit of nuttiness and grassiness slash corn stalks here and there as well.  For a second, I also hit on a whisper of lemon curd.

The sweet heat is the thread here with EB99 as that’s what I got with my first sip.  The abv isn’t harsh.  The approach isn’t hot, and the spiciness is tempered by the sweetnicity.  Not that this is a bad thing.  Vanillas, toasted marshmallows, caramel, and a little dab of honey can be found.   The finish is bright and flashy but fades away quickly with just a dim hum lingering for a while in the back of the throat.  Again – there’s no burn so your throat doesn’t need any spf.

If you’re looking for that powerful, in-your-face bourbon spice burn, this bourbon may not be your first pour.  However, if you’re more inclined to enjoy an afternoon in the liquid sunshine that is comfortable, warm with a sweet breeze, then your empty glass may be EB99’s next home.

Tasting Notes

Colour:  Burnished Chestnut.

Nose:  Vanilla, char, oak, ash, caramel, grassy, cornbread loaf, and pecans.

Taste: Vanilla, sweet caramel, toasted marshmallows, dab of honey.

Finish:  Medium-Long.