Indiana’s MGP has slowly been stepping out of the cozy world of contract distilling and into the realm of building its own brands. This started with the well-received Metze’s in 2015, and now MGP is back again with another brand: George Remus, named after the so-called “king of the bootleggers.” The brand was acquired from Queen City Whiskey Co. in Cincinnati late last year, but the whiskey inside is all MGP stuff: a high-rye blend of straight bourbon whiskies aged over four years.
We sampled the new release. Here’s what you can expect.
On the nose, things kick off with tons of wood, with hints of jasmine and thyme. Given time, some mint emerges, but it’s faint. The palate is extremely wood forward as expected, and the bourbon is ultimately a bit of a bruiser with lots of lumberyard character masking some more delicate notes of ginger, flamed orange peel, and burnt caramel which linger underneath. To be honest, it’s a rather one-note experience on the tongue, dominated by a level of barrel influence that simply overwhelms everything else and which hangs around on the finish for much too long.
Curiously, there’s no mention of MGP on the label. The whiskey says it is distilled by the “G. Remus Distilling Co.” in Lawrenceburg, Indiana. Funny, that. I guess even MGP doesn’t like to say its whiskey is made by MGP.