Though right in the thick of bourbon country, Town Branch is at the back of the pack in the bourbon deliciousness derby. Perhaps it’s because Town Branch is not a revived historic distillery, with reserves of tradition to draw from, but rather a distillery created by Alltech, an agriculture, meat, and beverage megacorp — though surely that hardly matters when you consider the whole region is steeped in bourbon history and legend from which one could easily draw. Consider that many believe (rightly or wrongly) that it was where bourbon originated. It’s certainly, at least, where most bourbon is produced.
Vital Stats: 40% ABV (80 proof), no age statement, 72% corn, 13% rye, 15% malted barley
Appearance: Almost the same as a Killian’s Irish Red, if you’re a beer drinker. If not, a clear coppery gold. Thin but lingering legs.
Nose: Unappealingly harsh that doesn’t mellow over time. Isopropyl, mineral water, charcoal, wet leaves, burnt sugar — these last three only if I smelled from a narrower-mouthed vessel (like the bottle) rather than a wider-mouthed vessel.
Palate: Fleeting, with a finish that’s overwhelmingly smoky and oaky, to the point of being ashy. Long low burn and, very late, cacao and coffee.