Philadelphia Distilling’s Tough Broad Malt Whiskey From Philly, BBL 3, Bottle 159, 45% ABV

Color: an almost cuprous amber.

Nose: a little bit of alcohol, lots of malt and a fair amount of young toasted oak, followed by a subtle botanical aroma.

Palate: mostly cereal, toasted oak and some mild spice (mostly white pepper?). A surprising absence of burn from the alcohol.

Mouthfeel is almost creamy, with gently toasted oak being the most enduring part of the relatively short finish.

This malt is a collaboration between Philadelphia’s finest microbrewery, Yards Brewing Company, and one of Philly’s most innovative young distilling companies. This is a young small batch whisky that has been released in small quantities annually in very small bottles for purchasers to be able to enjoy annually while more casks from the vintage continue to mature. There is tremendous potential here as the 2018 release is very drinkable, so if the casks impart more vanilla and spice over time, it should be quite good in just a few more years, and according to the plan of the distillery, it shall be released in small quantities annually so progress of the maturing can be appreciated from one year to the next.

Thumbs up to this innovative Philadelphia craft distillery know more for its gin, absinthe and cordials than whiskey. Keep at it!