Blending vintages of high rye mash bill to achieve this flavor profile at 115-116 plus proof was a very rewarding challenge. There is a delicate balance between creamy mouthfeel, tannins and sugars that comes into play that makes the end result magical. Older vintages have more evaporation which means a higher concentration of fats and sugars per ounce which gives them a nice creamy mouthfeel as well as caramel and honey goodness. They also have more tannins because alcohol has been in contact with the wood for longer. A lot of what some perceive as alcohol burn is actually a harshness due to tannins. This can counterbalance the benefit gained by the high concentration of lipid esters insulating your pallet from alcohol heat. There needs to be enough of the older bourbon for the oak flavors and mouthfeel, but also some younger ones to cut back on the tannins and bring in some delicate fruit and caramel flavor
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