Thursday, April 18, 2013

Kirkland's 103 Proof Bourbon

I finally decided to crack open the bottle of Kirkland's Premium Small Batch Bourbon that Pete picked up for me about a month or so ago. This particular batch is aged 7 years and sold at a whopping 103 proof (51.5% ALC/VOL). I have to admit I was afraid to drink this straight up. The little sip I had of it was hardcore. This bourbon was going to pack a wallop. So I decided to use it in two of my favorite cocktails that use bourbon: The Old Fashioned and The Manhattan.
The Old Fashioned
2 oz. Kirkland 's Premium Small Batch Bourbon

2 dashes Angostura bitters

splash water
1 sugar cube
1 maraschino cherry

2 orange wedges

Saturate sugar cube with bitters and water in an old-fashioned glass. Drop in a cherry and an orange wedge. Muddle into a paste using a muddler or the back end of a spoon. Pour in bourbon, fill with ice cubes, and stir.

The Manhattan
2.5 oz. Kirkland 's Premium Small Batch Bourbon

1 oz. Sweet Vermouth

Splash of Maraschino Cherry Juice

2 dashes of Angostura Bitters

1 maraschino cherry

In an ice filled cocktail shaker add Bourbon, Sweet Vermouth and Cherry Juice. Stir until the shaker is frosty. Strain into a chilled cocktail glass garnished with a maraschino cherry.
In total I had two of each cocktails and I have to admit that the Kirkland's bourbon worked better for me in the Old Fashioned than in the Manhattan. I like how the sweetness of the orange, cherry and sugar cube balanced out the strength of the Bourbon. I could tell that it was strong but it was a pleasant combination. In the Manhattan, I found the Bourbon to be too strong. The Vermouth just couldn't stand up to Bourbon. I found that I had to scale down to the Jim Beam 80 proof Bourbon to fully enjoy a Manhattan.

Oh, and about that wallop? I felt the effects of the Bourbon in the morning along with the other Beam Manhattans that I made for myself while watching movies at home Tuesday night. Speaking of the Beam Manhattans, for the next post I have a variation on the Manhattan recipe that I want to share with you that (in my opinion) made for a pleasant cocktail.

Until Then Happy Drinking
Sisco Vanilla