Monday, August 03, 2015


Diageo has announced the release of a 21 Year Old Kentucky Straight Bourbon whiskey from its Orphan Barrel Distilling Company brand.

Orphan Barrel Rhetoric 21 Year Old (45.1% ABV) has been aged in charred American oak barrels for one year longer than last year's 20 Year Old release. Rhetoric is an experiment in maturation and is re-released annually to explore the flavour characteristics imparted by each additional year the bourbon spends in the barrel..
Orphan Barrel - Rhetoric 21 Year Old Kentucky Straight Bourbon

Throughout the process, the base Rhetoric liquid remains unchanged, with progressive aging expected to continue through the release of Rhetoric 25 Year Old in 2019. Rhetoric stocks were found at the Stitzel-Weller Distillery in Kentucky, which were distilled in 1993 at the Bernheim Distillery.

Rhetoric 21 Year Old, is said to deliver a full mouth feel with aromas of cherry, sweet tobacco, honey, leather, oak, fruit, vanilla and caramel.

The Orphan Barrel Whiskey Distilling Company was created in 2014 with the aim of finding and sharing forgotten barrels of whiskey with discerning connoisseurs. Rhetoric 21 Year Old follows five previous Orphan Barrel bourbons: Barterhouse 20 Year Old - Old Blowhard 26 Year Old - Rhetoric 20 Year Old - Lost Prophet 22 Year Old and Forged Oak 15 Year Old.

Commenting on the new releases, Ewan Morgan, Master of Whiskey for Diageo, said: "The progressive aging experiment we're employing with the Rhetoric series is incredibly unique. We're going to be able to compare a line of bourbons side-by-side to see how aspects of the liquid – colour, aroma, flavours and mouthfeel – are impacted by extra time spent in the barrel. Like many others, I'm looking forward to tasting what one extra year in the barrel does to these bourbons over the coming years."

Orphan Barrel Rhetoric 21 Year Old, will be available across the US later this month from specialist retailers for a RRP of $100.00.

Posted by Steve Rush