Monday, November 28, 2022
HomeWhiskeyBardstown Bourbon Firm Fusion Collection #8 and #9 | Malt

Bardstown Bourbon Firm Fusion Collection #8 and #9 | Malt

“No man ever wetted clay after which left it, as if there can be bricks by probability and fortune.” – Plutarch

Bardstown Bourbon Firm is a behemoth by way of the Kentucky bourbon panorama. They’re already the seventh largest whiskey producer in the US (producing greater than seven million proof gallons yearly) regardless of having solely been in existence for eight years, which isn’t any small feat.

A big portion of Bardstown Bourbon Firm’s output goes towards contract distilling for different manufacturers, however there’s additionally been no scarcity of their very own merchandise hitting the market. These merchandise embody their critically lauded Discovery Collection and a cavalcade of completed expressions beneath their Collaborative Collection, lots of which have developed a following unto themselves, however at this time I’ll be reviewing what may presently be thought of their hallmark providing: the Fusion Collection.

As a comparatively new whiskey producer, Bardstown Bourbon Firm made the savvy determination early on to mix a few of their very own younger distillate with a few of their mature inventory of sourced barrels as a way to convey a product to market that might be indicative of their potential with out souring future prospects. That’s to say, they didn’t need to merely launch younger whiskey.

It has grow to be more and more frequent for brand spanking new manufacturers to take action as a result of they don’t have the preliminary money infusion to afford the hovering price of the scant few well-aged sourced barrels available on the market, nor have they got the funds to forgo releasing a whiskey of their nascent days. To bridge this hole, many corporations launch unaged spirits like vodka or gin in an try to show a revenue out of the gate and bide their time till their whiskey comes of age, usually across the two to 4 yr mark.

Bardstown Bourbon Firm’s late founder, Peter Loftin, confronted no such bother. After starting his profession as a wildly profitable telecom entrepreneur, Loftin based Bardstown Bourbon Firm in 2014 and instantly set his sights on not simply turning into one in every of Kentucky’s premier whiskey producers (their whiskey manufacturing started in the summertime of 2016), however extra ambitiously his purpose was to place his model as “the primary Napa Valley type vacation spot on the Kentucky Bourbon Path.”

In plain phrases his purpose was to create an aesthetically stunning trendy distillery that might attraction each to whiskey fanatics by using a number of the most subtle expertise within the business and the typical Joe or Jane merely on the lookout for an gratifying retreat full with a world class culinary expertise. Having just lately visited the distillery I can personally attest to the truth that these objectives have been met.

Bardstown Bourbon Firm is located on 100 acres of energetic farmland and, due to a latest enlargement, will see the development of a lake meant for use as a water supply for proofing their merchandise, it’s clear that the model is redefining what a contemporary Kentucky distillery can appear like. The meals of their visitor heart is excellent, their number of sought-after classic whiskeys obtainable by the pour is deeply spectacular (curated largely by their educated Customer Experiences Consultant, Dustin Reid), they usually’ve already established themselves as maybe the marquee vacation spot for contract distilling within the state. By supplying whiskey for manufacturers like Belle Meade, Blue Run, Excessive West, plus many extra, Bardstown Bourbon Firm has created a status even with their work for different outfits for being a supply of high-quality whiskey.

With a proficient staff in place that features Grasp Distiller Steve Nally, Head Distiller Nick Smith, high quality supervisor Travis Cantrell, the pinnacle of operations Justin Willett, and VP of recent product growth Dan Callaway, Bardstown Bourbon Firm has not solely had a quick begin in catching as much as the competitors, however they’ve additionally charted a promising future towards doubtlessly outpacing them in the future. That each one started with the Fusion Collection, however it’s going to even be fascinating to see how they evolve shifting ahead.

That’s as a result of Fusion Collection #8 and #9 -which I’ll be reviewing beneath – are the ultimate two iterations of the Fusion lineup. After sunsetting the Fusion Collection, Bardstown will transition into releasing bottles that comprise 100% of their very own distillate beneath the Origin Collection banner, which I’m instructed we are able to count on in early 2023. So, whereas they might reintegrate the Fusion idea sooner or later down the highway, these two expressions very a lot symbolize the tip of the start for the model.

For Bardstown Bourbon Fusion Collection #8, they’ve blended 58% of their very own 4 yr outdated 75% corn, 21% rye, and 4% malted barley recipe with 12% of their 4 yr outdated 70% corn, 18% rye, 12% malted barley recipe along with 30% of a sourced 12 yr Kentucky bourbon that makes use of a 78% corn, 10% rye, and 12% malted barley recipe.

The bottling proof is 95.5 (47.75% ABV) and the value for this expression (in addition to Fusion Collection #9) is $64.99. These have been each samples offered freed from cost by Bardstown Bourbon Firm which, per Malt editorial coverage, doesn’t have an effect on my notes or scores.

Bardstown Bourbon Firm Fusion Collection #8 – Assessment

Coloration: Medium gold

On the nostril: It’s bursting with recent fruit, wow! I imply blueberries, raspberries, peaches, juicy orange… every little thing. After resting a second I’m choosing up a little bit little bit of oak and it turns a bit floral with a brush of mint gum and bits of butterscotch. It’s general very vivid and candy with only a trace of nutmeg and clove plus a touch of thyme. It doesn’t have any of the darker notes I are likely to gravitate in direction of like brown sugar, leather-based, or black cherry however I’ll be damned… it is a pleasant and welcoming nostril.

Within the mouth: It has a really “clear” style which I’ve discovered to be frequent with Bardstown’s Fusion sequence. Their very own distillate has no off notes, and it has a really approachable mouthfeel. Once more, the fruit flavors burst on the palate and persist with the tongue whereas a little bit of clove and mint makes its method up the roof of the mouth complemented by some confectioners’ sugar and inexperienced tea which is a word I extra usually affiliate with rye. After sitting with the glass for some time there are additionally some vanilla ice cream notes which make an look as properly. Protected to say I’m a fan of this launch.


In an alluring show of each deftness and heft, Fusion Collection #8 has a lean mouthfeel to go along with a well-developed taste profile that skews light-and-bright however nonetheless manages to ship spectacular depth. Frankly I haven’t been too impressed with the Fusion sequence thus far, however it is a new excessive water mark for me and it’s that reality coupled with an inexpensive worth level that leaves me inclined to attain this a major notch above “good” on Malt’s scoring scale.

Rating: 6/10

Subsequent I can be contemplating Bardstown Bourbon Firm Fusion #9, which is made up of 48% of their 4 yr outdated 75% corn, 21% rye, 4% malted barley recipe together with 22% of their 4 yr 60% corn, 26% rye, 10% wheat, and 4% malted barley recipe, and at last 30% of a 12 yr sourced Kentucky bourbon with a 75% corn, 13% rye, and 12% malted barley recipe. I’ll say right here that although they don’t disclose the supply of the older Kentucky bourbons on this mix, Bardstown Bourbon Firm does a formidable job of providing transparency in these Fusion Collection bottles, an instance I’d prefer to see extra manufacturers observe. As aforementioned this bottle can be retailing for $64.99 and the proof for this expression is 96.8 (48.4% ABV). As soon as once more, this was a free pattern.

Bardstown Bourbon Firm Fusion Collection #9 – Assessment

Coloration: Mild gold.

On the nostril: Altogether a lot darker and extra caramel-forward with plum, a contact of chocolate, and a stronger charred oak affect than Fusion Collection #8. This one additionally has a crack of black pepper that smells scrumptious. There’s nonetheless a touch of mint on the nostril, however general the similarities between #8 and #9 are very restricted, in all chance as a result of this containing a distinct Kentucky bourbon plus a few of Bardstown’s wheated mashbill, which is a favourite of mine. Whereas Fusion #8 excited me for the way vivid it’s, Fusion #9 is thrilling for being extra of a conventional Kentucky bourbon mix executed effectively.

Within the mouth: The mouthfeel is denser and the caramel and vanilla that roll over the tongue on first sip are merely enchanting. That is much more mouth coating than Fusion #8 and that’s paired with a higher depth of taste because the notes of caramel, vanilla, milk chocolate, and oak are extra pronounced whereas the black pepper and baking spices on this expression are extra distinguished with out throwing both the sweetness or the spice out of stability. The end has a medium size and dries the palate solely barely, which gently encourages repeat sips. This simply screams “well-rounded” to me, and it doesn’t miss the mark at any level within the tasting expertise.


Although Fusion #8 and Fusion #9 supply very totally different experiences they each exhibit a excessive degree of mixing acumen from the Bardstown Bourbon Firm staff. With regard to Fusion #9 particularly I’m struck by its stability and depth of taste, showcasing a formidable integration of younger and outdated distillate to craft one thing that’s higher than the sum of the components. The richness and extra prototypical bourbon notes wrought from the 12 yr outdated sourced distillate play properly with the “clear” mouthfeel offered by the younger distillate. This was my most popular pour each as a result of the flavour profile is extra in my wheelhouse but in addition as a result of I feel it’s a greater show of the artwork of mixing.

Rating: 7/10

Frank’s Closing Ideas

On one hand, I shocked myself with how generously I initially scored these whiskeys however upon revisiting them I felt exhausting pressed to maneuver them down a notch. The value is exceedingly truthful, particularly for a comparatively younger distillery that’s incorporating well-aged Kentucky bourbon into a mix, and the standard is outstanding. It needs to be mentioned that the Fusion Collection has lengthy existed within the shadow of the Discovery Collection as a result of the truth that the latter is made up of totally sourced whiskey and has at all times carried a better age assertion.

Nonetheless, with these two most up-to-date iterations and the upcoming Origin Collection on the horizon it’s clear that Bardstown Bourbon Firm has constructed a stable basis for themselves shifting ahead. It will likely be intriguing to see if and the way they revisit the lineup sooner or later however with the mixing acumen they’ve already displayed and the enhancing high quality of their very own distillate I’ve little doubt that we are going to see nice issues from Bardstown Bourbon Firm down the road.

Pictures and samples courtesy of Bardstown Bourbon Firm.


Most Popular

Recent Comments