Review: Barrell Seagrass

You’ve got to hand it to the folks at Barrell Craft Spirits; they come up with some interesting names for their special releases. Then again, most of their products get released into the world as just a batch number, so when they do get a chance to flex some creative muscle, it should be memorable. First, we had Dovetail, then Armida, and now, Seagrass. Why Seagrass? I’ll let Barrell explain that one:

“Barrell Seagrass is an ode to coastal memories, blended to evoke the joy of a day on the beach and an evening listening to the soothing rhythm of waves. Hot sun, brisk air, dry sand, and oceanside vegetation are brought to mind. A ripe and inviting tropical nose and grassy, bright body evolve to a finish as long as the view down the shore on a clear day.”

What exactly is in this “ode to coastal memories” you ask? Well, it’s a blend of rye whiskey distilled in Kentucky, Indiana, Tennessee, and Canada finished in casks that previously held Martinique rhum agricole, apricot brandy, and Madeira wine. Sounds about as wacky and flavor-filled as previous special releases. Let’s see how it stacks up!

The aroma is grassy, as advertised, but there’s nothing sharp or overly vegetal to make that a bad thing. On the contrary, there’s a lot of silky sweetness, mostly of the stone fruit and mulled wine variety, that enhances those salty, greener notes, making for one of the most engaging noses I’ve yet encountered from Barrell Craft Spirits. The palate is initially dominated by juicy apricot and candied peach, giving things a generous, syrupy brightness that’s nicely complemented by a bold, but not overbearing, rye spice. The fruit recedes into the mid-palate, allowing the blend of ryes at its core to showcase more their cinnamon sugar, licorice, and dried herb notes. The finish is generous but drying with oak and fading reminders of sweet orchard fruit. Like Barrell’s other special editions, this thing is a flavor roller coaster. Definitely worth the price of admission.

119.3 proof.


Barrell Seagrass




Drew Beard is assistant editor for Drinkhacker and winner of several booze-related merit badges, including Certified Specialist in Spirits and Executive Bourbon Steward. A former federal employee turned hotelier and spirits journalist, he looks forward to his next midlife crisis.

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