Kinsey American Whiskey Aged 10 Years in Used Oak Barrels, 43.4% ABV

Color: pale gold, like straw in autumn.

Nose: mildly sweet cereal with a feint floral bouquet.

Palate: the sweetness of corn and younger oak is prominent, with some light honey and vanilla, with some light vanilla bean spice that remains through a relatively short finish. The mouth feel is very light, smooth and easy.

Noting that this whiskey is made from 100% corn mash, it is fascinating that we are not dealing with a bourbon (presumably because the spirit is matured in used rather than new oak barrels). The whiskey lacks the spice normally associated with bourbon (it is even lighter than wheated bourbons) and doesn’t have the big vanilla sweetness I typically associate with either a virgin or a first fill ex-bourbon cask. The gentle flavor and coloring suggests refill bourbon casking. The considerable aging of 10 years does deliver a gentle, smooth dram that is very easy to drink. This is a nice, simple whiskey that is easy to enjoy, just don’t expect a lot of complexity or many layers of flavor. This will not make one give up a favorite scotch or bourbon, but it is a pleasant dram. Short, sweet and simple.

This and the other whiskies in the Kinsey line are a salute to Pennsylvania’s distilling history as there was a Kinsey Distillery outside Philadelphia along the Schuylkill River in the 19th and 20th centuries. The present maker and bottler is Philadelphia’s New Liberty Distillery, but the bottle indicates this whiskey is “blended and bottled by Kinsey Distilling Co.”