October 17, 2019
In 2019, there are a number of Buffalo Trace Barrel Picks, including including Buffalo Trace, Eagle Rare, Blanton’s, Weller 107, and Weller Full Proof (I wish I could find one). This time, I happy to compare Eagle Rare, one of the rare (sorry for the pun) age-stated Buffalo Trace bourbons. This Eagle Rare single barrel pick, from barrel 09-E-19-P-5-15-006 and aged for 10 years and 3 days in warehouse P – floor 5 – rick 15, comes from Potomac Wine & Spirits in Washington, DC, right in the heart of Georgetown.
This barrel pick gives me another opportunity to see how a specially selected barrel might differ from the “normal” release. In my Blanton’s comparison between a standard release from 2013 and Calvert Woodley’s Barrel Select, I found that the barrel select was noticeably richer, even at the same proof, so I wonder if it will be the same with Eagle Rare. Hopefully you’re just as excited as I am to find out more in this Eagle Rare 10 comparison: Buffalo Trace’s “Standard” offering vs Potomac Wine and Spirit’s single barrel select.
The below table outlines key facts and figures for each Eagle Rare bourbon.
The standard Eagle Rare 10 and Potomac Wine and Spirit’s Eagle Rare Barrel Pick are unsurprisingly similar, but there’s a 10-15% difference that’s just wide enough for me to pick Potomac Wine and Spirit’s barrel select as the winner. Going from the standard Eagle Rare to the barrel select, I was able to notice the increased sweet, spicy, herbal, and rich traits in the barrel select. Starting with the store pick ended up dulling my senses just enough so that I couldn’t sense the lighter traits in the standard one. Once I caught onto the fact that the store pick was richer in nearly every way, I knew the store pick was the winner.
The Potomac Wine and Spirits Eagle Rare Single Barrel is an upgraded Eagle Rare 10 that adds a little more honey, vanilla, fruit, citrus, anise, and oak to provide a more interesting and pleasant experience. With that said, the differences are not drastic enough for me to increase anything from moderate to moderate-strong. At 45% alcohol, neither are heavy hitters but they’re still enjoyable.
This Eagle Rare comparison was definitely a challenge. It took me over 30 minutes to do this, even in the quiet of my own apartment, but it was well worth it to find out how barrel selection impacts a whiskey. In this case, many small changes add up to more noticeable differences that make Potomac Wine and Spirit’s Eagle Rare Barrel Pick the winner.