Elijah Craig Barrel Proof B524 Review

I always look forward to the three annual releases of Elijah Craig Barrel Proof. As far as flavor goes, they have been consistently good to great (except for A124!), they are relatively easy to find, and have a decent price-point for a 10+ year whiskey. This batch was released in May but they can take a few extra months to make their way into the Washington State area, so I purchased this via SipWhiskey in early June. Sooo, let’s crack this sucker open and get to work on an Elijah Craig Barrel Proof B524 review!

Series: Annual Barrel Proof series, Batch 2 of 3
Classification: Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey
Age: 11 years, 2 months
Proof: 130.6
Batch Designation: Small Batch
Proof Designation: Barrel Proof
Filtered Status: Non-Chill Filtered
Mash bill: 78% Corn, 12% Malted Barley, 10% Rye
Barrel Char Level: 3
Barrel Entry Proof: 125
Distillate Source: Heaven Hill
Distillery: Elijah Craig Distillery Co. (Heaven Hill)
Company: Heaven Hill
Bottled By: Elijah Craig Distillery
Distilled/Aging Location: Bardstown, Kentucky
Master Distiller: Conor O’Driscoll
Release Date: May 2024
MSRP: $75
Secondary Market: $99 – $120
Availability: Relatively Available

Elijah Craig Barrel Proof B524 Review
Elijah Craig Barrel Proof B524 Review

My tasting reviews are unique in that I include the notes of several well-known whiskey critics. The hope is that this format will help me and others to explore and expand their tasting experience. After you have taken your own tasting notes, read the reviews and see if there is a flavor note that others discerned that now you can detect as well.

Legs

Beads formed on the crown at about 10 seconds, the legs formed at about 27 seconds, and the first leg fell to the bowl at about 59 seconds.

Nose

Chocolate, brown sugar, caramel, barrel char, vanilla, and old oak.

Other Reviewer’s Perceptions

Mash & Drum: Peanut brittle, a lot of sweet vanilla, deep brown sugars, classic Elijah Craig, a little buttery note, some oak, kind of a funky oak note.

The Bourbon Guy: Vanilla, caramel, cinnamon, cherry, chocolate, and oak.

Breaking Bourbon: Peppery oak | Cigar box | Raisin | Baking spices | Robust

Palate

Sweet caramel and brown sugar hits first but is quickly followed by baking spices, cinnamon, white pepper, nutmeg, then mellows into the same sweet flavors (caramel & brown sugar) along with charred oak, a musty oak note, sweet leather, chocolate.

Other Reviewer’s Perceptions

Mash & Drum: Very spicy on first sip. A little drier oak profile on the back end, a ton of cinnamon, brown sugar, a charred oak note that lending itself to some dryness on the back of the palate, cayenne pepper vibes or chili powder, vanilla. Big punch of ethanol on the back palate. Not something that I’m really digging too much. A musty oak note. It’s lacking in sweetness for me.

The Bourbon Guy: Vanilla, caramel, cinnamon, chocolate, nutmeg, oak, and a hint of mint.

Breaking Bourbon: Heavily charred oak | Baking spices | Tobacco | Graham cracker | Caramel

Finish

The finish is long and is dominated at first with baking spices, (cinnamon, allspice) which fades into a mild sweetness of caramel and brown sugar along with some old oak.

Other Reviewer’s Perceptions

Mash & Drum: It has a long finish, but it is thin.

The Bourbon Guy: Long and warm with lingering notes of nutmeg, allspice, and chocolate.

Breaking Bourbon: Baking spices | Caramel chews | Aged oak | Long

Mouthfeel

This is very rich, viscous, and pleasant once you get past the heat of the baking spices.

The Burn

4 out of 5. This means that the burn from the alcohol is a bit lower (5% to 9%) than what I would expect it to be. I would guess this to be around 125 proof, not 130.6 proof.

Tasting Summary

The ECBP B524 has a nice balance of sweetness, spiciness, dark notes and dry oak. Sweetness hits the palate first but that is immediately dominated by spiciness for a moment and then the underlying sweetness comes back along with old oak & leather and rounds the pour out. It is not super complex, but the flavors do work well together.

My Rating

The higher the score the better the whiskey is in my opinion. For reference, my best rated bottle so far is the George T. Stagg 2022 (138.7p) with a score of 9.7.

Score TypeScoreExamples
Likability Score8.31.0 – 10.0
Availability Score31-Rare, 2-Hard to Find, 3-A Little Hunting, 4-Easy to Find
My Tasting Notes

A blank version of this tasting notes wheel is available in both a color and a black & white version in the member’s area.

Elijah Craig Barrel Proof B524 Tasting Notes

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