In 2008 an idea developed into reality and the an old welding shop in the heart of Waco Texas was transformed into what is now the Balcones Distillery.
Distilling began in 2009 and from that moment the distillery did things their own way..
The use of Blue corn sourced from New Mexico instead of the traditional yellow corn variety is used along with barley grown from Texas just adds to the profile the Distillery is looking for..
Add this to traditional methods of production including pot stills produced at Forsyths in Scotland, and what can only be called a unique maturation period due to the Texas climate.. It’s hot in Texas or so they say, pretty dry too but there are rapid temperature swings which are perfect for making those casks breath and this in turn helps with maturation..
With good product behind them the only thing missing was more space.. In 2011 a slightly larger building was purchased, I say slightly larger it is 65,000 square feet which is around 25 times larger than the original building.
Maturation has been carried out within the larger building but also a recreation of the original Distillery was undertaken just on a larger scale, the doors opened to the public in 2016 and the team hasn’t looked back since..
That Boutiquey Whisky Company
These guys are trend setters, funky labels sit proudly on the bottles which grab your attention whenever you enter retail premises, or browse the shelves of those that have a bottle or two.. They not only independently bottle some of the finest whisky they also dabble in Rum, Gin and a little Bourbon and not satisfied with that they now put together a rather fine dram club and the BBC or Boutiquey Broadcasting Company ( not to be confused with that amateurish group on the telly !! )
Balcones 3 year old batch 2
Region.. Waco Texas
Age.. 3 years
Cask.. Tequila Cask
Outturn.. 212 bottles
Nose.. Initially this offers up a real sweetness with honey, summer berries, plum jam which entwines with freshly ground coffee beans, liquorice and plenty of cinnamon.. After a few minutes there is a definite although not dominating smokey effect, I’d assume this is from the charring of the barrel ( not sure how heavy a char this would have received )
Palate.. Whoa.. This is rather different on the palate than the nose suggested.. There is a real struggle between sweetness and bitterness, there is honey and toffee notes leading into coffee, chocolate and a distinct vegetal note..
Finish.. Bitter and short
Thoughts.. I am really on the fence with this one.. It’s one that might grow on me but the palate just struggles to sit with me.
As we know Tequila casks are not a typical cask for maturation although we may see more of them used before too much longer.. Do they work ? Well I’m not convinced to be honest, I’m not in any way saying this is bad it just does not suit me !!
This is certainly a liquid of two halves, the nose alone would convince me to buy this, it really does offer up some delicious aromas but once you dive into it there is just a real feeling of disappointment ( for me anyway !! )
Like I said earlier though it might just be one of those drams that needs to grow on you, just like the Brimstone ! ( although for me this is far more approachable than that )
This sample was provided by That Boutiquey Whisky Company as part of the Dram Good Club..