Devils River Whiskey is the brainchild of Mike Cameron, who serves as president of the Texas Distilled Spirits Association, and his new microdistilled bourbon brand comes to us from Dallas. The company, which just started selling in the state in April, is taking a largely traditional approach with this whiskey, distilling its mash (high-rye, with “dialed back corn”) in copper pot stills, aging in #4 char barrels, and blending the finished product with local water from the namesake Devils River. The whiskey is chill-filtered before bottling at 45% abv. No age statement is provided.
Let’s give it a whirl.
The nose is wood-forward, with ample barrel char, and while the wood is dominant, it’s not overpowering. The alcohol sears the nostrils in a manner that’s a bit harsh — frontier-style, perhaps — but also provides aromas of cherry juice and some spearmint.
The sawdust notes continue onto the palate, where notes of plum, butterscotch, and tart cherry emerge. Solid body; sharp and a bit burly. The finish remains moderately woody, with notes of cloves and a hint of sweet mesquite… but maybe that’s just the Texan in me coming vicariously forward through this rustically styled whiskey.
Would love to see this with some more barrel time on it.
B / $30 / devilsriverwhiskey.com