Review: Old Tub Bourbon
Old Tub was an old Jim Beam brand that dates back to the late 1800s, and 2020s Beam decided to bring it back as a limited time release. It’s a bonded expression of straight Kentucky bourbon, and though it carries no formal age statement it’s at least 4 years old. It’s bottled “unfiltered, for more robust flavor” and features an old-timey label — and it’s certainly priced to move.
Let’s taste this tub of a whiskey, shall we?
It’s undoubtedly a rustic style of bourbon, the nose weighted heavily with dusky barrel char, some cloves, and a whiff of smoke. There’s a popcorn and cereal component in there, but it’s buried deep, well beneath all that charred wood. The palate opens things up, slowly but surely. The barrel influence trumps everything at the start, but some air time exposes more of the whiskey’s nuances, including a sultry dark chocolate note, ample vanilla, and a nutmeg spiciness. It’s filtered through graphite and — invariably — charred wood, with a toasted coconut note and a surprising hit of cinnamon emerging slowly as the finish builds. With enough time in glass it all coalesces, but it takes its time getting there.
Surely you have the patience to see it through. I have faith in you.
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