Booker’s Bourbon “Center Cut Batch” (2015-03) Review

Photo courtesy Beam Suntory

Photo courtesy Beam Suntory

Uncut and unfiltered – a great way to experience bourbon at its rawest.  Booker’s was one of the first, if not the first, barrel-proof bourbons on the modern market.  The third batch (2015-03) of Booker’s bourbon is known as “The Center Cut”.  This refers to Booker Noe’s favorite part of the rickhouse, where Booker’s bourbon is aged.  Fred Noe, Booker’s son & current Master Distiller at Jim Beam, called upon a team of whiskey experts, enthusiasts, and writers to help him select this batch.  This batch is aged for 7 years, 2 months and 28 days, and bottled at 127.2 proof.

On the nose, I get a bit of roasted corn, sweet vanilla, oak and an overall sense of caramel.  There’s a small hint of fresh mint buried there too.  The caramel note becomes stronger with a little airtime.  Taste-wise, a sweet roasted corn comes in with some spice, followed by a big oak note and a burst of sweet caramel.  This is the first batch I can easily make out the charred oak note.  The finish is long and warm.  Perfect for a winter’s night.

The flavor profile is still Booker’s.  There isn’t too much variation from the other batches.  From memory, the barrel char note might a little prominent here.  Booker’s is still one of the best whiskies in the Beam portfolio and comes highly recommended.  A bottle should run you just north of $50.

(Thanks to Jay over at Tasty Whiskey for the sample.)

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