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Doc Swinson's "Alter Ego" Triple Cask Sherry & Cognac Finished Straight Bourbon Whiskey (750ml)

SKU #1522882

The Doc Swinson Alter Ego is the result of many years of experimentation with cask finishing at the Doc Swinson facility in Washington state. They've found the winning recipe with this exceptional product. Using a blend of two straight bourbons distilled at MGPI in Indiana, Doc's has crafted this deftly balanced bourbon to revival any of the new bourbon brands on the market today. The two bourbons (one a high 21% rye and the other a very high 36% rye masbill) are each aged 5-6 years in new charred American oak before being blended and finished in three specially selected casks types. Using two distinct types of sherry butts (PX & oloroso) and fresh Cognac puncheons the bourbons are rested for an additional 3 months before being blended and married for another month in Cognac foeders. The sherry butts come from Montilla-Moriles Spain where their sherry solera pyramids date back to the 1920’s, on a dry oxidized style oloroso, the other a rich tangy sweet Pedro Ximinez style. Bottled at an invigorating 94.4 proof this lovely whisky is one of the most drinkable on the shelf today.

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Price: $59.99

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Product Reviews:

By: Andrew Whiteley | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 4/30/2021 | Send Email
I'm both wary and weary of finished Bourbon. I was honestly a little disappointed when I heard the the Alter Ego was coming and would be a triple cask finished Bourbon - the quality of their unaltered 15 year expressions have been so phenomenal. Now with that said, I wouldn't be doing my job if I didn't try to set aside my preconceived notions and taste everything with an open mind. Certainly there are finished bourbons I've thought well done and fully enjoyed, they're just few and far between. Fortunately, this turns out to be one of the mileposts by which finished Bourbons must be judged. The careful use of Oloroso and PX sherry, the extra marriage time in Cognac, it all comes together in a harmonious blend that is greater than the sum of its parts. The base bourbon is excellent and a creative blend of mashbills in itself. The extra sweet and nutty profile provided by the two Sherry cask components is counterpoint to the added fruit and vanilla of the Cognac. Most importantly, nothing stands out as a sharp edge - so often the downfall of a finished Bourbon. Bravo to a whisky that expands the horizon of what is possible.

By: David Othenin-Girard | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 2/11/2021 | Send Email
In a general sense, I'm skeptical of bourbon finishes. It's not because there's anything wrong with the idea, but simply that so many people execute it so poorly. There are so many places where the project can go wrong. Certainly, if you're using barrel finishes to improve a subpar bourbon, you're going to have a bad time. Likewise, if you take great bourbon and hammer it with wine or wood flavors, you risk having a muddled or unbalanced character that's worse than the bourbon was to start. The key is to retain all the greatness inherent in your base whiskey, while adding something new or interesting that enhances the flavors of the original product. On that count, I think the new Alter Ego has succeeded wholeheartedly. I'm already a fan of good middle-aged MGP. The careful finishing, blending, and marrying process that Doc's has developed add the perfect nuance to that already solid core. Let's taste! The color is burnished gold, not as dark as you might expect with a PX element involved. What starts rather woody at first, quickly opens up to a bevy of gorgeous stone fruits and fresh spice. Sherry notes aren’t obtrusive, but it's not your standard bourbon nose either. With more air the nose is very polished offering vanilla, toasted oak, some roasted nutty character, hints of marshmallow and candied citrus. On the palate, it's surprisingly textural and velvety. Here we start to see some of the bold spice of the French oak, but the sweetness of the bourbon (and the PX I guess) keep it at bay. Now we have some rich almond character, zingy cinnamon, sweet tarts and caramelized fruit. All this is extremely approachable and not at all heavy handed. For those who might avoid finishes, you'll be pleasantly surprised, but it also has enough there to satisfy someone who's looking for something outside the standard Indiana bourbon profile. Couldn't be happier to be supporting these little guys, they've taken some serious risks here in terms of the cost and potential for failure and honestly I think they've done an impeccable job. Another great offering from our friends in Ferndale, WA!

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