Port Cask Finish: Batch No. 3’s Finishing Cask

Phil selected a port cask finish for our third limited-edition American single malt whiskey in the Evergreen Collection. The resulting whiskey is exceptionally smooth and refined.

Whiskey Barrel Selection: American Oak to Used Bourbon to Port Cask

First, let’s recap the barrel journey Batch No. 3 has taken: the whiskey was first aged for three years in new American oak barrels. Then Phil transferred it to used bourbon barrels to mature for two more years. During this time, Phil pondered on the perfect finishing barrel. 

He was looking to balance out the dry character of the first two batches by using a finishing barrel that would add a different kind of depth and sweetness to compliment the complex mash bill and velvety texture of the matured whiskey. 

He kept coming back to the idea of adding sweetness from dark red fruits. His ideal final taste would be somewhere between the prior Batches: not as dry and smokey as Batch 1, yet not as sweet as Batch 2. 

One night as he sat by the roaring wood stove at the Farm nosing samples it hit him; a port cask finish might just be the ticket!

We started the search for the right type and quality of barrels. Ultimately we ended up sourcing two lots of excellent French white oak port casks that had previously been used to age port-style wines from producers in California and France.

In summer of 2019, we transferred the whiskey and prepared to wait. To our surprise the wait wasn’t terribly long. 

The low alcohol content of the port wine and the warm summer temperatures at the Farm made for a quick transition. The whiskey aged in port barrels only took six weeks to achieve the balance and influence we were looking for in our port cask finish whiskey.

If you want to dig deeper into the science of barrel aging whiskey, we’ve got you covered here.

Then it was ready to be transferred to the blending tank to begin our slow dilution process to bring the whiskey from 114 proof to 80 proof for bottling.

The result? Batch No. 3 excels in its elegant balance of spicy barley malts, dark fruit aromas, and high-quality barrel maturation.

More Reading on How We Make Our Whiskey…

Want to dig a little deeper into how we made our Evergreen collection of limited edition American single malt whiskeys (Batch No. 1,2, 3+ 4)? Check out these articles on each phase of our unique approach:

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