Stagg Jr comes out swinging with huge honey, citrus, apple, vanilla, oak, and cinnamon with less licorice. The heat comes with some bite, but I’m still able to manage it. This bourbon makes a big entrance.
“Chewing” brings the same big honey sweetness with a little more citrus, apple, vanilla, licorice, rosemary, thyme, dark berries, oak and cinnamon with hints of cotton candy. The dark berries give me the impression of a brief wine finish. A little more herbal licorice, earthy rosemary, and thyme come more to the front as well, but it’s far from what EH Taylor Barrel Proof has. Overall, Stagg Jr has a great blend of sugar, fruit, earth, oak, and spice that I want from mature and well-blended / made bourbon. Subsequent sips become a little more dark and oaky, and I really like how each sip changes with time, which is another telltale sign of great bourbon. I also notice that Stagg Jr doesn’t have anywhere near the same oiliness and viscosity as 2020’s EH Taylor Barrel Proof, so I wonder if it is chill filtered. Regardless, Stagg Jr tastes great and continues the streak of excellent releases that I’m glad to have been able to experience.
The finish is oakier with honey, orange, apple, cinnamon, and coffee grounds that fades into a dried citrus and apple peel, almost as if it were apple brandy finished. Yeah, I’ve mentioned finishes a few times, so Stagg Jr is definitely an interesting bourbon. “Chewing” leaves a light tingling sensation from the alcohol with a mix of roasted oak, licorice, honey, vanilla, dried citrus peel, and cinnamon that all build with each sip.