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In the Spirit

By Richie Jones, owner of Downton Grill and co-owner of Circa and Piedmont Brewery Kitchen

The Barrell brand of spirits first caught my attention about three years ago. It’s been around since 2013 and has become popular with many whiskey aficionados. Fortunately, it’s now become available here. 

This company doesn’t distill any spirits, but blends and bottles a wide variety of different whiskeys, bourbons and rum. What makes this company unique is that they blend different aged whiskies, not just from Kentucky, but with whiskey from Indiana, Tennessee and a few other states. 

Many of you who follow whiskey will know the name Fred Minnick; he is a huge bourbon writer, reviewer and all-around whiskey connoisseur. He wrote an article for Forbes magazine this year and chose Barrell’s 15-year-old bourbon as his whiskey of the year this year. This specific bottling consists of straight bourbons from Tennessee, Indiana and Kentucky. 

The whiskey that it defeated in order to get the top spot is the perennial favorite each year, William Larue Weller. This feat was a very monumental one, due to the fact that Barrell is just a blender and bottler going up against a Buffalo Trace-owned brand that is always a great bourbon. 

I’ve been very pleased with the different Barrell products that I’ve had the privilege of drinking. Here in Macon, Downtown Grill was lucky enough to get one of the 60 bottles of this nectar of the gods that made it to Georgia. I’d suggest trying any of these, and I’m confident that you won’t be disappointed.

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