What does the term “CASK STRENGTH” actually mean? Drinking cask strength whiskey is like having a sip straight from the barrel itself. Typically water is added to whiskey prior to bottling in order to reduce the "Alcohol By Volume” (or “ABV”) and balance the water and alcohol, presenting a “smooth” drinking whiskey. This process also aids the whiskey’s appeal to a wider audience and is initial in creating a whiskey anyone can enjoy. Cask strength whiskey, on the other hand, is bottled straight from the barrel without any water being added, offering the drinker an unadulterated whiskey which, if they so choose, could be later adjusted with ice or water.
Speaking of cask strength, the newest Sonoma Whiskey release is a Cask Strength Cherrywood Smoked Bourbon Single Barrel that is aged four years and has notes of chutney and stone fruit on the nose, with cherry cola and wet leather on the palate. This particular barrel is bottled at 119.8 proof. We recommend trying it neat first before adding any water or ice. If you use it in a cocktail, be prepared to use less than you normally would as a little bit goes a long way at almost 60% alcohol.
This bottle was first released to Distiller Select club members, but is now available for purchase in our Whiskey Shop.
With the recent release of our Sonoma Bottled in Bond Straight Bourbon Whiskey, I wanted to take the time to highlight what makes this bourbon so unique. It is not just the delectable flavor profile of caramel chew on the nose, well balanced wood sugars, and leather on the palate (although it certainly helps!). What truly makes this bourbon so special is its Bottled in Bond designation. Some of you may remember the Bottled in Bond Cherrywood Rye Whiskey that was released earlier this year. So what exactly does Bottled in Bond mean, and why do we use it with these two special releases?
The Bottled in Bond Act was passed in 1897 as a way to ensure the integrity of American Whiskey as it needs to follow very specific guidelines. The whiskey must be:
- The product of one distillation season (January to June or July to December)
- Aged in a federally bonded warehouse for a minimum of four years
- Bottled at precisely 100 proof (50% ABV)
- Labelled with the distillery at which it was made and bottled
Want to try Bottled in Bond Straight Bourbon Whiskey for yourself? Sonoma Bottled in Bond Straight Bourbon Whiskey is available in our Whiskey Shop.
I hope you enjoyed this bit of whiskey trivia. Stay up-to-date with all things Sonoma Whiskey by heading to our website and signing up for our newsletter, or better yet, join our club.
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