American Whiskey - Flavored

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Cleveland Christmas Spice Flavored Bourbon Whiskey

From: Ohio, United States Liquor Review Category: Flavored American Whiskey

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Awards

San Francisco World Spirits Competition

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Beverage Testing Institute

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Proof66 Notes

Cleveland Black Reserve whiskey is officially labeled a bourbon meaning the spirit must be aged in charred new oak barrels for a period of time prior to bottling, whatever other modern technologies are used (note: straight bourbon would require 2 years... there is no such "straight" on the label). Additionally, the whiskey will have no additives whatsoever... again, despite whatever technologies are used. Since the Cleveland Whiskey process takes 6 months, we guess that the bourbon is acquired from elsewhere and given the additional treatment on site, then bottled and distributed. Indeed, in the article at Darn Good Times, they note Cleveland acquires a 6-month aged bourbon and then run it through their own process in a period of 6 days. They claim the taste is the equivalent of a 10-12 year old product.

Cleveland Christmas Bourbon is their limited edition release for the holidays flavored with holiday spices. They say it has "the subtle aroma of Christmas spices like nutmeg, cinnamon, orange peel, sweet cherry, peppercorn, licorice, and clove.". It is bottled at a 86 proof (lighter than the 100 proof flagship product but much higher than the more commonly 70 proof flavored bourbons.

Cleveland Whiskey was founded by Tom Lix, who arrived in Cleveland in 2007 and founded a company based upon accelerating the whiskey maturation process. According to the write-up in Magnet, he places the whiskey in stainless steel tanks where "Carefully measured sections of oak and other woods, categorized by surface area, weight and moisture content, are placed inside the vats. These will contribute a whole palette of unique flavors. Pressure cycles, temperature cycles and other factors will be constantly monitored and adjusted by automated equipment." This process is meant to both imitate and compress natural aging that takes place over many days (temperature and humidity variations coming from the rising and setting of the sun and other weather conditions) into minutes--they say a factor of 36:1. The company itself was founded in 2009.

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  • 853971004054
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