Woodford Reserve Double Oaked Review

Barrel Finish Select

Woodford Reserve Double Oaked is created by taking their classic Woodford Reserve Distiller’s Select recipe and placing it in a second virgin charred oak barrel. This second barrel has a double heat treatment: it is first deeply toasted, then lightly charred, and the bourbon is left to age for a little less than a year. This second barreling process utilizing different toasting and charring methods compared to the first barrel, results in creating some very interesting flavor notes and adds a depth of flavor as well.

Woodford’s statement about their Double Oaked: “An innovative approach to twice-barreled bourbon creates the rich and colorful flavor of Woodford Reserve Double Oaked. Uniquely matured in separate, charred oak barrels – the second barrel deeply toasted before a light charring – extracts additional soft, sweet oak character.”

It is also interesting to note that when creating their whiskey, Woodford Reserve uses a rather unique process. They use both column stills and copper pot stills for their recipe, using a blend Old Forester column distillate with their copper pot still distillate to create their signature Woodford Reserve flavor.

Classification: Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey
Age: nas
Proof: 90.4
Barrel: aged in virgin American white oak then finished (double oaked) in a second virgin American white oak barrel
Proof Designation: na
Filtered Status: Chill Filtered
Mash bill: 72% corn, 18% rye, 10% malted barley
Distillery: Woodford Reserve
Company: Brown-Forman
Still Type: Column Still & Copper Pot Still
Release Date: February 2012 – Ongoing since then
Color: Mahogany – 1.6 on the Color Scale
MSRP: $50 (2023)
Availability: Very Available

Woodford Reserve Double Oaked Review
Woodford Reserve Double Oaked 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.


Butterscotch, sweet oak, caramel, vanilla, apple, a hint of cherry. After finishing the pour and letting it sit, an intense aroma of figs or rainsins filled the glass.

Other Reviewer’s Perceptions

Mash & Drum: Toasted marshmallows, sweet oak, toasted flavor profile aromas, chocolate, sweet almonds, marzipan, lots of caramel, smells like a freshly opened Snickers bar, dark fruits, little bit of cherry, chocolate raisins.

Breaking Bourbon: A nice mixture of sweet and oaky. Toasted marshmallows, sweet vanilla, lightly toasted oak, and corn are topped with a drizzle of syrup. 

The Whiskey Shelf: Dark roasted caramel, toasted vanilla, mocha, roasted oak, roasted ripe banana, candied pecans, dried cherry and orange peel, cinnamon, chocolate fudge, cola, and hints of brighter licorice and orange. It smells great.


Caramel, marshmallow, sweet oak, mild vanilla, dark fruit, dried Bing cherry.

Other Reviewer’s Perceptions

Mash & Drum: Sweet toasted oak, lots of vanilla, chocolate, dark fruits, cherry, raisin, blueberry mixed with dark chocolate, toasted marshmallows, creamy on the palate. A perfect dessert bourbon.

Breaking Bourbon: Oak and sweet vanilla are the dominant flavors here. Beneath are subtle hints of leather, caramel, and dried dark fruits. Seeing as this was exposed to new charred oak twice, it’s surprising to see how well the sweetness of the vanilla plays nicely with the woody oak flavors.

The Whiskey Shelf: Darker caramel, roasted vanilla and ripe banana, toasted oak, cinnamon, dark chocolate, dried apple and orange, roasted coffee, a spritz of fresh orange, and some lightly bitter oak tannins kick off the flavors.


Moderately long, sweet oak, leather, vanilla, caramel. Starts out dry and ends semi-sweet.

Other Reviewer’s Perceptions

Mash & Drum: Butterscotch, sweet oak, chocolate, a little apple.

Breaking Bourbon: The mellowest of heat is present, which makes for a really nice clean enjoyable finish. Dry leather, oak, tobacco, burnt caramel, baking chocolate, rye spice, and sweet dried fruits are present at the start. The finish then morphs into leather, oak, and a dash of white pepper, which lingers for a surprisingly long time.

The Whiskey Shelf: The finish first leaves roasted oak, lightly bitter oak tannins, dark chocolate, vanilla, a spritz of orange, cinnamon, and banana. There are gentle and lightly bitter (but not overly bitter) and oaky tannins with some orange peel, cinnamon, and coffee.

Notes and History

Woodford Reserve is one of the oldest and smallest distilleries in the US. It sits on Kentucky’s oldest distillery site where Elijah Pepper began distilling whiskey way back in 1812. This is also the site where Master Distiller James C. Crowe perfected the practice of using a sour mash in the fermentation process, a method that is still common practice in whiskey making today.

Woodford Reserve’s Products include:

  • Straight Bourbon Whiskey
  • Double Oaked
  • Malt Whiskey
  • Rye Whiskey
  • Wheat Whiskey
  • Baccarat Edition
  • Master’s Collection
  • Distillery Series

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