It’s time for the third and final Larceny Barrel Proof for 2023, the high-test version of Heaven Hill’s wheater.
With C923, we find the usual notes of sweet butterscotch and baking spices on the nose, though there’s perhaps more of a leathery, savory edge here than we usually get with Larceny’s Barrel Proof releases. An edge of peppery gunpowder emerges with time in glass, alongside a persistent menthol note — the latter stronger than the usual eucalyptus notes we see in this release.
I found this one bruising at full proof — 63.2% abv, mind you — though measured sips can push through the heat to suss out notes of candied bacon, maple syrup, and a healthy grind of cinnamon. Water’s a must this go-round, and I dosed it plenty. Stronger vanilla notes and that typical touch of banana that Larceny often supplies soon emerge — this round less banana bread and more Bananas Foster, complete with a drizzle of caramel.
Despite showcasing a litany of the same flavors as it almost always does, C923 somehow doesn’t coalesce as well as the other two releases this year, A123 and B523. It’s fine on its own and in isolation, but if you’re trying to decide between the three 2023 “vintages” of the whiskey, I’d reach for one of the earlier offerings.