Updated: May 4, 2021
Distillery: Spirit of French Lick
Age: 4 Years
Mashbill: 55% corn, 35% rye, 10% malted barley
BACKGROUND: Spirits of French Lick “The Mattie Gladden” was named after Martha “Mattie” Gladden which was originally located in Tennessee, before being relocated to Salem, Indiana. The legend of Mattie originates from the accusations of her being a prominent “Madame of Bordellos.” In 1889 Madame bought a house on main street which became a hotbed for controversy, becoming a popular spot for traveling businessmen and other men of the town. The mash bill features 2 unique yeast strains, house yeast, and brandy yeast. The brandy yeast does a magnificent job bringing fruitier notes from start to finish.
NOSE: The first thing that comes to mind when sampling the nose on this dram is the exceptionally light fruity notes. Flavors of sweet red apples, baked cinnamon, toffee, and sweet vanilla dance around your nasal palate with undertones of simple sugar and a light toasted marshmallow. (23/25)
PALATE: The palate follows right along with the nose, bold with a combination of sweet and spicy flavors. The apple and caramel from the nose came together a bit more than they did in the nose making an apple pie like flavor that is followed with a bold rye spice that coats your mouth leaving a light tingle of oak. (33/40)
FINISH: A bold finish that is medium in length. The malted barley and rye notes jump immediately to the forefront and really dominate the finish. As it sits the rye spice shows subtle hints mixed with a now burnt expression caramel, fading into a light oaked spice until there is nothing left to taste. (22/25)
VALUE: For $45 this is a must buy. Mattie Gladden checks off all the boxes for a good unique bourbon, sweet, spicy, bold, and filled with bright fruits. (7/10)
FINAL THOUGHTS: It is no surprise this bottle has been winning different awards around the country. This expression is bold and unique without straying too far from the traditional bourbon path. I will definitely be keeping one of these on my shelf for as long as can. We are looking forward to seeing what SFL releases next!
Slightly Better Whiskey: Midwinter Night’s Dram act 8 scene 3
Equal Whiskey: Belle Meade
Slightly Worse Whiskey: Basil Hayden’s
Tell us what you think and give us some feedback!
96-100: The perfect dram, juice of the gods
90-95: Near perfect, truly incredible whiskey
85-89: Amazing whiskey, will always try to keep a backup bottle of this
80-84: Very good, some minor flaws here or there
75-79: Good, quite enjoyable to drink, Will try and keep a bottle on the shelf
70-74: Solid, wouldn’t go out of my way to get this
60-69: Decent, would offer this up to non whiskey drinkers
50-59: Not my cup of tea
Below 50: Give away