Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Evan Williams 23 Year Old

In a time when whiskey age statements are dropping like flies, Heaven Hill is one of the few whiskey distilleries anywhere that is adding older age statements to its regular line up.  Within the last two years, the distillery introduced Elijah Criag 20 for the domestic market and Evan Williams 23 for the overseas market.  The Evan Williams 23 is available domestically but only at the Heaven Hill Visitor's Center, and only for $400, which is a pretty wild price for a 23 year old.  I tried the Evan Williams 23 as part of a blind tasting on Twitter (thanks to @Bourbontruth for setting it up).

Evan Williams 23 year old, 53.5% abv ($400)

The nose is hugely oaky with caramel and toffee.  The palate set me back with an acid attack.  It's sharply acidic, then yeasty.  With a bit of air, caramel notes emerge, but it's still really sour.  The finish gets back to some of the candy notes but still has that acidic sharpness.

I really didn't care for this.  The nose is nice, but the palate is way out of balance with the heavy acidic notes.  This was a gift shop bottling, and I've heard that some of the export bottlings are better, but this one is seriously flawed, and for the price, that's a real crime.


  1. I believe the EW 23 Year has been on the market for several years. I saw it in the Gift Shop for sale in 2009 when touring HH.

  2. I have a picture of myself holding a bottle of the EW23 in the HH round bar from Feb, 2008.

  3. I picked one of these EW23 bottles at the gift shop along with a William Heavenhill Signature edition. Your review caused me to throw up a little. I can't wait to try my bottle now...