Milam and Greene Bottled in Bond Bourbon Review [In Depth]

Milam and Greene Bottled in Bond Bourbon

Alex author
Founder, writer
Milam and greene bottled in bond bourbon header

Milam and Greene Bottled in Bond Bourbon Details

Distillery: Milam and Greene (distilled at Bardstown Bourbon Company)

Type & Region: Bourbon, Kentucky (maybe?), USA

Alcohol: 50%

Composition: 70% corn, 22% malted rye, 8% malted barley

Aged: 4-4.5 years

Color: 1.4/2.0 on the color scale (tawny)

Price: $65

From the company website:

Throughout the year, the Milam & Greene whiskey team travels to Bardstown, Kentucky to distill on continuous column stills using our people, proprietary mashbill of 70% corn, 22% malted rye, and 8% malted barley, and unique yeast strain to achieve a balanced and well-rounded flavor profile for its whiskey. This 2024 inaugural bottling of Bottled in Bond Bourbon was distilled by the Milam & Greene whiskey team in Kentucky, in Autumn 2019, and rested in char-4 oak barrels in a U.S. bonded warehouse. After careful aging and monitoring, in the spring of 2024, 72 barrels were selected and brought to Blanco, Texas for batching and hand-bottling at exactly 100 Proof.

Milam and Greene Bottled in Bond Bourbon overview

This is a first-ever for Milam and Greene – their own bottled in bond bourbon. The Milam and Greene team concocted a unique mashbill, including the unusual malted rye, and collaborated with Bardstown Bourbon Company to distill and barrel the distillate.
Crafting your own recipe and having someone else distill it for you is a hybrid approach between sourcing and distilling in house. It’s an interesting approach, as I believe that Milam and Greene has its own distillation facilities in Texas. You know what though, the more the merrier.
I’m guessing that Milam and Greene committed to a certain volume of distillate, possibly a few hundred barrels of bourbon, otherwise it would not have been worth Bardstown Bourbon Company’s time and resources to do a small run…or it would have been far more expensive to do so. And for $65 a bottle, I suspect that they did not take the more expensive route.
This bourbon was initially distilled in Fall 2019 at Bardstown Bourbon Company and bottled Spring 2024, making this around 4.5 years old. The part that isn’t so clear is if the bourbon was aged in Kentucky or Texas. Based on the media release, “72 barrels were selected and brought to Blanco, Texas for batching and hand-bottling,” makes it sound like Kentucky. The back of the bottle stating, “aged and bottled by Milam & Greene in Blanco, Texas,” suggests Texas.
That’s an important distinction because Texas and Kentucky have different climates that will affect how the bourbon ages. One isn’t better than the other, but Texas is definitely hotter. It doesn’t help that the front label doesn’t declare Kentucky or Texas bourbon.
So what sets this bourbon apart from other Bardstown Bourbon Company-distilled or sourced releases are the mashbill (but no idea where the grains are sourced), yeast (maybe, who really knows), and barrel selection / blending by the Milam and Greene team. I greatly appreciate how mostly transparent they are about this bourbon, and ultimately how it drinks is more important than where it was aged.
Let’s find out if their first ever bottled in Bond Bourbon is a hit in this Milam and Greene Bottled in Bond Bourbon review.
This bottle was kindly provided by Milam and Greene (or at least their media company). All opinions are still my own, but I am still always grateful for media samples / bottles.
Milam and greene bottled in bond bourbon back

As an FYI, I bought and use these Glencairn glasses for everything (they’re the best): Glencairn Crystal Whiskey Glass Set of 6, Set of 4Set of 2, or just one. Full transparency, this is an affiliate link, so I may earn a commission if you buy this or something else from Amazon.

Milam and Greene Bottled in Bond Bourbon smell

Well that’s nice – I first smell slightly grassy caramel, dried cherry, orange peel, vanilla, roasted oak, cinnamon, clove, sweet nougat, and some fennel and hay. The heat is fine.
There’s a pleasant dark sweetness, fruitiness, and spice with a slightly grassiness and happiness that makes me think of wheated bourbon, even though I know that there is no no wheat.
The fullness, richness, and depth aren’t noteworthy, but they feel good enough to make the scents enjoyable and interesting
After swirling and rest, I smell grassy and slightly earthy caramel, dried cherry and apricot, orange peel, roasted oak, cinnamon, clove, hay, darker nougat sweetness, and a little bit of earthy pumpernickel and herbal fennel.
COME ON MAN…THIS HAS TO BE WHEATED BOURBON RIGHT? Somehow it isn’t, but I’m exasperated that it isn’t. I’m guessing that the malted rye comes off a lot like wheat, which I guess is cool too.
Milam and Greene Bottled in Bond Bourbon is crafted well, although it’s not spectacular. It has a bunch of pleasant scents and some richness throughout to be interesting, but nothing pops, shimmers, or stands out to me.
Milam and greene bottled in bond bourbon front

Milam and Greene Bottled in Bond Bourbon taste and aftertaste

The flavors start with caramel, vanilla, orange peel, dried cherry, roasted oak, vanilla, cinnamon, earthy caraway seed, slightly gummy grain (but very subdued compared to Maker’s Mark), clove, and some grass.
Milam and Greene Bottled in Bond tastes so much like a wheated bourbon, even though I know that it isn’t. Nonetheless, I can’t shake that thought because there are so many similarities to Maker’s 46, minus the shimmery oakiness that I think comes from French oak.
But because we know that this does not have wheat, but does have 22% malted rye, I can state that the traditional rye flavors, such as licorice, pumpernickel, caraway seed, pineapple, or green grape, are more subdued here.
It’s flavorful initially, but not all that layered, complex, or deep yet.
After “chewing” I get caramel, orange peel, dried cherry and apricot, vanilla, roasted oak, caraway seed, cinnamon, clove, pumpernickel, and a little hay. There’s more fruity pop, so props for that, because I like that a lot.
More earthiness also comes out, which probably comes from the malted rye, as does oaky spice that brings some woody and spicy bite.
That said, Milan and Greene Bottled in Bond Bourbon tastes so much better after “chewing”. There’s more life, fullness, and overall flavor this time around, and it’s very clear that this is way better than their Unabridged Volume 2.
The aftertaste initially leaves honey, dried orange peel, vanilla, roasted oak, cinnamon, and slightly gummy wheat with lingering cinnamon, clove, fennel, oak, and a little pineapple. It reminds me so much of Maker’s Mark 46.
After “chewing” it leaves honey, apricot, dried cherry, orange peel, roasted oak, clove, cinnamon, and caraway seed followed by more earthy oak, caraway seed, and dried orange peel that also leaves my mouth feeling a little dry.
As good as it is (very), it still doesn’t feel that rich or layered. I’m not saying that it doesn’t have some of that because it’s far from plain or boring. The flavors are varied and tasty, but they feel straightforward at the same time. There’s not much give and take between the various flavors, so I don’t feel compelled enough to rate this as “Top Shelf”.
I’ve unfortunately lost some Glencairn’s while in transit, and that made me very sad. So, I wised up and bought this Glencairn Travel Case that comes also comes with 2 glasses so I don’t need to worry so much about them breaking. I think it’s great, and I think you’ll love it too. Seriously, if you already have glasses, protect them.

Milam and Green Bottled in Bond Rating

Mid shelf+
I’m so relieved that this is good. After my not so glowing review of their Unabridged Volume 2, I really didn’t want to be forced to be so lukewarm on another release. I don’t review whiskey / accept media samples to be negative, but I prioritize honesty over anything else.
Thankfully, Milam and Greene Bottled in Bond Bourbon is very good and certainly a unique and interesting bourbon. Honestly it’s pretty close to “Top Shelf”. This is a job well done.
I just can’t shake the thought that this smells and drinks like a wheated bourbon, although there is exactly 0% wheat in the mashbill. It’s citrusy, spicy, and kind of gummy-wheaty like a wheated bourbon. If you’re familiar with wheated bourbon, then this is going to feel eerily familiar.
This then highlights malted rye’s uniqueness (probably), because I haven’t had that many bourbons made with malted rye. I expected the malted rye to make the bourbon smell and taste more earthy, as I’ve found with other malted grains, but that’s not the case here. I’m not mad at what I experienced, but it’s also so strange at the same time.
Props to Milam and Greene for crafting something unique, tasty, and completely surprising. You could fool a lot of people with this, although it’s not a bad surprise. It just goes to show that using different grains can make a big difference with the end product.
As much as I enjoy this, I wish that it felt more mature – more layered, vibrant, and full. A little bit more of some / all of those things would have propelled this into “Top Shelf” territory. The silver lining is that the foundation is there, and it could get there with another year in oak.
Milam and Greene Bottled in Bond Bourbon is a solid option for $65, but it’s also not quite a must-buy either given what else there is for around that price. I think it makes the most sense to get this when you’ve tried a bunch of bourbons (rye’d, wheated, and Mellow Corn), and then you’re at a point where you want to try something new and different.
Nonetheless, nice job Milam and Greene for a well done release.
Alex author
Meet the Author: Alex

I have far too much fun writing about whiskey and singlehandedly running The Whiskey Shelf to bring you independent, honest, and useful reviews, comparisons, and more. I’m proudly Asian American and can speak Cantonese, Mandarin, and some Japanese.

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Shattered glass really sucks, so if you’re on the move, this Glencairn-like stainless steel snifter glass should survive your travels. Full transparency, this is an Amazon affiliate link, so I may earn a commission if you buy this or something else from Amazon.

BrüMate NOS’R, Double-Wall Stainless Steel Whiskey Nosing Glass – 7oz (Matte Black)

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