Review: Rabbit Hole Distillery Heigold Straight Bourbon
Rabbit Hole Distillery continues to add expressions to their portfolio, so to keep the rest of us from getting too confused going forward, they’ve rebranded each offering with a distinctive name. For those playing at home, the straight bourbon is now Cavehill, the straight rye is now Boxergrail, and the PX finished bourbon will henceforth be known as Dareringer. The latest addition to the Rabbit Hole line-up is Heigold, named for a 19th century German immigrant who famously adorned his Louisville mansion with carvings that honored American icons in an act of patriotism admired by Rabbit Hole’s founder Kaveh Zamanian, himself an immigrant to the U.S. It’s also Rabbit Hole’s first high rye bourbon, a rather traditional offering for a distillery that prides itself on unique whiskey recipes. Lest you think they’re going mainstream in that department, however, Heigold is made with 25% malted rye. It’s a completely in-house offering, distilled at Rabbit Hole’s campus in Louisville and aged just under four years. Let’s take it for a spin!
The nose on this whiskey shows more age than I would expect for a bourbon this young. There’s a little raw earthiness underneath with corn husks and hay bales, but notes of chocolate chip cookie, malt ball, black pepper, and wet oak give it a welcome complexity. The palate is a bit more youthful up front with top notes of bright citrus and caramel candies. The malt component adds savory muscle and a creaminess to the body that nicely balances some of the more saccharine elements. The mid-palate sees more spice cabinet and wood shop notes, none of which are overly expressive, but it all melds into a lengthy, gently sweet finish that lingers with notes of tangerine, butterscotch pudding, and new leather. This is already the best offering from Rabbit Hole I’ve tasted, but I’d love to see where this goes with a few more years in the barrel.