Sample Mountain Week 3: Rare and Low Proof

For Week 3 of sample mountain I am tasting 3 limited releases with relatively high price points and low proofs to see if any of them hold up. I tasted from lowest proof to highest starting with the new Woodford Very Fine Rare then the 2020 releases Blade and Bow 22 and Yellowstone Limited Edition


Woodford Very Fine Rare

Age: NAS

Proof: 90.4

Price $130


Nose: Sweet and inviting with vanilla cream, rich oak and fainter spices.

Taste: Very similar to the nose but with a bit of youthful grain. Middling mouthfeel.

Finish: Long finish with warm spice and rich oak. Certainly the highlight of the dram.

Buy a bottle? No

Blade and Bow 22 2020

Age: 22 years

Proof: 92

Price $450


Nose: Floral and almost perfumey with a note I associate with dusty Turkey and old Stizel Weller but struggle to describe.

Taste: Funky, dusty, sweet, floral and a bit of spice. Great mouthfeel for the proof.

Finish: Long sweet and sticky finish with hints of floral notes and some oak.

Buy a bottle? No

Yellowstone Limited Edition 2020

Age: 7 years

Proof: 101

Price $100


Nose: Nuts, grape jam, hints of grain and spice.

Taste: Roasted nuts, rich oak, red fruit and that same hint of grain.

Finish: A bitter note hits at the start of the finish but fades to lingering nuts, grain and fruit.

Buy a bottle? No


The Woodford was tasty and reminded me a bit of another expensive 2020 special release with an unfortunately low proof and thin mouthfeel(Russell’s 2002). If this was cheaper or higher proof it would be a more appealing option. I’d gladly pick it up at the 70-80 that something like Remus Repeal goes for but the 130-150 and with the scarcity I’d rather grab a Doc’s or Bardstown.

The Blade and Bow was excellent but the insane retail price of 450 and the scarcity make it an easy pass from me. If you want to really try some tasty Stitzel Weller this is probably the cheapest way to do it though. For such old bourbon it was very far from over oaked.

The Yellowstone Limited Edition reminded me a good amount of Blood Oath Pact 6, which I really enjoyed, but it wasn’t quite at the same level, the finish was a little disappointing and I already grabbed a backup BO6.


TL;DR: None of these live up to their price/scarcity for me. They were all enjoyable though.


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