Updated: Feb 19, 2021
Distillery: Sourced from MGP
Mashbill: 64% Corn, 30% Rye and 6% Malted Barley
BACKGROUND: Belle Meade is a whiskey brand with a lot of history. It was originally produced by Charles Nelson in the 1800s. The brand was relaunched in the mid 2000s. The brand is owned by Nelson's Green Brier Distillery in Tennessee. They source their whiskey from MGP and blend it together at their own distillery. Each batch of Belle Meade Cask Strength is between 7 and 11 years old and is comprised of only 7 barrels. The Belle Meade brand consists of a sour mash small batch, reserve, cask strength single barrel, XO cognac finish, maderia finish, sherry finish, and new honey finish.
NOSE: At first there are notes of walnuts, rich fruit, and an ethanol burn. I then picked up on a sawdust note that I couldn't get out of my head. (19/25)
PALATE: The proof makes itself known right up front. As soon as the whiskey touches your lips their is a proof and spice tingle that is followed by notes of vanilla, caramel, and dried oak. It is overall a good whiskey that is relatively straight forward and not too deep. (30/40)
FINISH: Belle Meade Reserve has a medium-dry finish that has a slight bitterness to it with strong notes of pepper, brown sugar, oak, and nuts. (20/25)
VALUE: Belle Meade 108.3 has an SRP is $60 which isn't great, I think it should be priced at around $45-50. (7/10)
FINAL THOUGHTS: Belle Meade Reserve is a tasty higher proof whiskey. It is nothing special and priced a little high but overall enjoyable. It is straightforward but would make a great cocktail. At $60 there are better choices.
Similar & Slightly Better Whiskey: Maker's Mark Cask Strength
Similar & Equal Whiskey: Sonoma Brother's Bourbon Whiskey
Similar & Slightly Worse Whiskey: Jim Beam Single Barrel
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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