I didn’t realize it had ever left, but Baker’s 13 is back on the market, returning to store shelves to give drinkers a fresh taste of this classic expression with 6 extra years of age on it. Originally launched in 2019, it became an instant classic and a worthy upgrade to Baker’s 7 when more celebratory tipple was in order.
Have things changed in the last 5 years? Let’s give the whiskey a fresh try — with the caveat that, again, this is a single barrel release so mileage will vary more than usual. Looking for the barrel number? It’s embossed on the metal neck ringer.
I’m happy to report that all the things we’ve come to expect and love about Baker’s remain in effect here, the whiskey still shining beautifully — though it’s not without some tonal shifts. A touch of peanut and caramel corn lead the way, butterscotch and peppermint tempering the more expected fruit-driven notes of the bourbon — a classic, amply aged Jim Beam-distilled composition. The palate is refined and clean, mint notes again driving the experience alongside a classic peanut butter character. Silky milk chocolate offers a soothing and immediately dessert-like quality, while the iconic cherry notes of Baker’s are kept in reserve — present, but quiet. In a departure from my 2019 bottle, baking spices are minimized while notes of brewed tea come more to the forefront of the finish. An echo of peanut butter cookie dough lingers for quite awhile, alongside a lightly tannic punch of oak.
107 proof. Reviewed: Barrel #224728.