The always intriguing Blood Oath series continues with this, its seventh annual release: Blood Oath Pact 7 Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey. As has been the case in previous years, it’s a blend of Kentucky bourbons, all rye-heavy recipes, including a 14-year old bourbon, an 8-year old bourbon, and (the twist for 2021) an 8-year old bourbon finished in Sauternes casks. Sauternes and bourbon is an unusual, and practically unique, combination, so kudos to Blood Oath for having the guts to give it a try.
Surprisingly restrained on the nose, the whiskey shows aromas of peanut brittle, red pepper, and toasted coconut — never evoking Sauternes and, oddly, never really evoking bourbon, either. There’s more happening on the palate, slightly peppery with notes of cinnamon and cloves, echoing its heavy peanut character before pumping out some notes of spice-laden nougat.
What I never get at any point is any sense of the Sauternes barrel — though that may be the sheer power of the underlying bourbon pushing the impact of the finishing barrel aside. Sauternes can do dazzling things with more elegant single malts. Here it seems to be a no-show.
98.6 proof. 51,000 bottles produced.