About – Eagle Rare is distilled by Buffalo Trace and is the big brother of their eponymous flagship whiskey. This bottle in particular is part of Buffalo Trace’s single barrel select program and was chosen by Middlebrook Liquor Store in Knoxville, TN. The standard version of Eagle Rare has recently seen the removal of the single barrel designation. Although it is still bottled one barrel at a time, with the new bottle filling system it is possible for each barrel to have minor contact with the previous barrel. Because of this it can’t be labeled as a true single barrel. Eagle Rare is a Straight Kentucky Bourbon Whiskey aged for 10 years, bottled at 90 proof, and can generally be found for around $30.
Smell – Orange peel, lemon, honey. With a bit of water clove takes over as the dominant scent.
Taste – First thing that comes through is sweetness. This is a well integrated bourbon with a silky mouth feel. As it opens up notes of brown sugar and honey come through with a bit of cinnamon on the back end.
Finish – Medium bordering on the shorter side, very little alcohol burn with a bit of cinnamon and toffee with a faint note of chocolate at the very end.
Score – 88
Verdict – Eagle Rare is a really good bourbon that is just short of being great. For people just getting into bourbon I always suggest Buffalo Trace as a good baseline for what good bourbon is, and Eagle Rare is the next step up from that. It isn’t a bourbon that requires your full attention at all times, and as such can be enjoyed as a fantastic sipping whiskey in any situation. This whiskey is also versatile and makes for a good mixer in a classic cocktail such as a Manhattan. I would recommend Eagle Rare to anyone that has not tried it before. You can never go wrong with keeping a bottle stocked in your home bar either as I usually do.