Last month, former Old Forester master taster Jackie Zykan announced she was leaving the storied Brown-Forman-owned distillery to start her own small batch bourbon brand, Hidden Barn. Now the Kentucky-based company has unveiled the first fruits of its labors.
The firs release from Hidden Barn Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey, as it is fully dubbed, is Hidden Barn Small Batch. To create the whiskey, Zykan worked with Neeley master distiller Royce Neeley, and the two brought together seven barrels from the stock of Neely Distillery.
Neeley is known for his particularly hands-on approach, which includes “personally hand-collecting wild Kentucky yeast, carefully monitoring a 5-day fermentation using traditional cypress fermenters, and personally distilling and hand-cutting the double pot distillation.” The Hidden Barn Small Batch was fermented using wild yeast and is doublepot distilled. It was collected at 127 proof, and entered the barrel at 110 proof.
The mash bill features 70 percent corn, 20 percent rye, and 10 percent malted barley. It was matured between 4 and 5 years in two-year seasoned American white oak barrels. The whiskey offers notes of almond, butterscotch, sweet cherry, dried fig, black tea, spearmint, allspice, black pepper, grapefruit peel, and cardamom.
“We wanted to produce the kind of whiskey we would be proud to share, we wanted to lift the guardrails and pursue boundless creativity and unmatched quality in our process,” said Zykan. “Hidden Barn whiskies are full of subtlety and nuance, emphasizing quality at every turn and crafted to be shared in the celebration of good friends and good whiskey.”
Plans call for Hidden Barn Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey Batch #001 to be presented at an undiluted batch proof of 53% ABV and priced at $74.99 per bottle. The initial offering will be available in Kentucky, Colorado, Florida, and California, with more distribution expected before the end of the year.
For more information, head over to Hidden Barn Whiskey’s official website.