Texan Spirit

Texan Spirit

From the lone star state

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Welcome to the flavor rodeo!

Hold on to your hats, cowboys, a wind of change is blowing through the Lone Star State. During the past decade and a half, Texas has regained its independence. No longer bound by the distilling practices of their northeastern counterparts, the taste of freedom is silky strong and it lingers like that of freshly baked bread.
Come again? Handcrafted Spirits, partner. They’re taking these here parts by storm. Texas has successfully married experimentation with tradition to produce three delicious kindred Spirits of their very own – Bourbon, Rye and Single Malt. We’ve managed to noose samples of each of these bad boys and round them up for tasting. Saddle up!
If you’re heading down to San Antonio, you might Remember the Alamo, but you definitely won’t forget Alamo Black Label Bourbon. Crafted from top-notch grains and aged in American oak barrels, this rich, bold Bourbon hits all those sweet notes, then brings you down for a smooth landing. A perfect way to start exploring the heart of Texas.   
Since you’re in the neighborhood, you shouldn’t skip town without a shot of .44 Rye. You know it’s true Texan if it has a gun barrel diameter in its name. But it’s Ranger Creek’s used Bourbon barrels that help this Rye Whiskey hit its mark. It starts you off gently with cinnamon and mint, tightens its grip with clove and tobacco, and ends the ride with warm bread crust. Talk about Texas hospitality.
Travelling up north to Waco, it’s time to revisit our ole friends at Balcones Distilling. Combining classic techniques with contemporary ways of crafting, they pay homage to centuries of American distilling tradition. And the result is their silky Texas Single Malt Whiskey that’s an explosion of fruity flavors, it’s long finish nothing short of the very definition of Malt.
Bottoms up!
Smartass Corner
Before you get Spirited away, check out a few fun facts that’ll make you shake in your boots:
1) Young but feisty. It was only 2006 that the Garrison Brothers Distillery was granted the first distilling permit for Bourbon outside of Kentucky and Tennessee, making it the oldest legal Bourbon distillery in Texas. But don’t let numbers fool you, the Texan Bourbon boom is booming as we drink.
2) In Texas, everything is bigger, Bourbon included. In fact, not only can Texans compete with their Bourbon at home, they’re going global. The renowned Whiskey reviewer and author of the Whiskey Bible, Jim Murray, has ranked Texas Bourbon among the best in the world.
3) Crank up the heat. While its northeastern Spirit cousins have four complete seasons, Texas can pack four seasons into one week. These shifts in temperature, from 90 to 135, strongly affect how Whiskey interacts with the wood of the barrel, giving Texas Spirits their unique flavor.
4) Extra small barrels with an extra-large wallop. Besides naming their Spirits after ancient firearms, Ranger Creek uses small barrels, which dramatically speeds up the aging process, producing an incredibly mature Rye Whiskey under 19 months.
5) Good for business. Historically, Texas farmlands haven’t been used for barley. Until now. The new ‘Spiritual’ movement has prompted farmers to grow barley specifically for Whiskey production. And with Texas being the second largest US market for Spirits, it’s a perfect hand-in-glove situation.

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Flavor Spiral™

About The Flavor Spiral

The Flavor Spiral™ is a quick, clear and visually-appealing way to look at the drink's flavor DNA.

It's tasting notes reinvented. The Flavor Spiral™ is a unique and revolutionary way of describing flavors. It was developed by Flaviar tasting panel, industry experts, and You, our dear Flaviar community member.

Your favourite drinks like never before. It could easily be an art form, but that's a conversation for another day.
Dog Dogson
Dog Dogson's
Rye Whiskey is made from mash that is at least 51 percent rye. The grain gives Rye Whiskey its spicy, sometimes peppery, and bitter flavor. It was a big seller before Prohibition, and after decades in obscurity, it’s fashionable again. Fun fact: George Washington distilled Rye Whiskey at Mount Vernon.

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Ratings & Reviews
Member Reviews and Ratings of Texan Spirit
I wanted to like these more than I did. Not bad, but just not outstanding. Very middle of the road-and that's ok. It's why I like this idea so much-I get to try without spending a lot.
The balcones was meh. The other two were good. I liked the ranger creek rye the most.
The balcones was meh. The other two were good. I liked the ranger creek rye the most, that one was good.
didn't care for any of these; glad I didn't spend money on a full bottle of any of them.
Not my smooth oaky Bourdon love
Balcones was my favorite. The other two were okay. Probably wouldn’t buy them.
They were okay, but not to my personal taste.
The Alamo was amazing, Balcones was good, but the mint flavor in the Rye was overpowering and almost gross. Still got a 7 because of how good the Alamo and Balcones were, though.
Ranger Creek .44 Rye The clove and nutmeg slapped me like my ma’ma did when I got my smart mouth. Spicy kicked in like the sting that followed. Umm...no. Doesn’t really mix well with 7-Up either and that’s my favorite mixer. Not the best aftertaste either Alamo Black Label Bourbon Whiskey A little too smoky for me. Smooth, though. Slightly sweet but too much. Came in the Texan Spirit sampler so, figured I’d give it a try. Good with a mixer but, wouldn’t go out of my way to keep a bottle in the liquor cabinet. Balcones Texas Single Malt Whisky No. Just no. Minor difficulty getting it past the nose and way too spicy. Didn’t pick up any of the caramel, no fruit, butter, sweet...nothing. Just spicy With something toasted. Really couldn’t tell.
Didn’t really like any of these. Would not spend money to purchase a full bottle of any of the three.
This was an OK Texas bourbon taster. It does not match the Texas bourbon flight from Whiskey Cake in Houston.
I wouldn't buy any of them. The best was the Balcones, though.
Decent bit of whiskey for a tasting. The bourbon was good, middle of the road share with a big group of friends but nothing too special. The rye was tasty, might even but that one again, unlike the bottle of balconies on the shelf that might have a better chance of being used to clean parts in the garage than being drank. The single malt was flat. Too bad because the first two were building up to greatness, but the cleanup hitter struck out. Hopefully the next tasting set is more exciting.
Not good... not much more to say
About the same as other previous Texas experiences. Lots of build up. Plenty of let down. Just not my taste.
So hard to drink but so enjoyable. It’s got a very strong spice up front but it’s also very smooth. I feel like I went and got a caramel apple and dipped it in Tabasco. It shouldn’t taste good but it really does!
Ok o am glad I tried this, but I was so disappointed in the Balcones. I got caramel and spice. But it was so underwhelming. I actually liked how smooth the Alamo was, but it lacked flavor and I found no peat or smoke in the nose or taste. Even though it has been panned by most I liked the Ranger Creek Rye of the 3 the most. It was lime a rye should be, but I was not screaming for more. I am glad I had a chance to try all three, but I won’t be going back for any of them at the store.
This was my first tasting kit and I enjoyed it quite a bit. To me it was definitely an 8/10 because everything included with the kit has helped me start to be able to pick out notes. Will they be my favorite spirits? Who knows.
Not at all pleased with any of the 3. Alamo was the most bearable, however I would not ever purchase. The .44 rye was absolutely disgusting. Then the balcones single malt... well... I’ve had their rye, and it wasn’t bad, this one smelled great, I was looking forward to it, ...and BAM, wtf was that taste.. nothing could wash that taste out of my mouth.. wow... I would steer clear... try some whistlepig instead...
It is an interesting selection of Texas Whiskies!
The Alamo sample is worth the price by itself
That .44 was brutal
The Alamo Black Label was strong, but nice. Balcones was rough, but manageable. The .44 rifle was awful. I’m still trying to get the taste off my tongue with a grill brush days later.
The Texan Spirits were interesting and we had fun with the taste test. The favorite samples were the Whistle Pig Home Stock followed by the Alamo.
First sample box from the club and had a little tasting party. Balcones stole the show, definitely my favorite of the three. Would consider a bottle to add to my bar. Great experience and I’m looking forward to the next sampler!
Overall a good selection. I would say that the Alamo and Balcones led the trio, and the Ranger was a nice addition to a Manhattan.
Great variety of solid Texas spirits
I had the Balcones Texas single malt edition for the first time. I have to say the aroma was the first thing that really stood out among other whiskys I have had. It was really well rounded and made me want to jump right in. It was then backed up with the flavor, which was really good. I usually only drink strong flavored Bourbon, but this is one I will buy and keep in my bar. I think it would be great for those who are not into the strong overpowering flavors of straight bourbon. It was smooth and very flavorful.
Alamo was great. Ranger Creek was ok, but being a bourbon drinker the Balcones was too spicy for my liking
The rye was surprisingly good.
Loved it! Great flavors!
My first sampler box was OK. Balcones was easily the best of the lot, which says something from a Bourbon guy. The Alamo just didn't sit well with me, I found it had a lingering burn. The Ranger Creek was pretty much middle of the road for me. I did enjoy the chance to try 3 spirits I wouldn't normally have a chance to try. That said, at $38 a pop I find it quite pricey. I haven't yet gotten one of my free bottles and I'm not quite sure how that will work. But I'm not really sold on the value of this with the $300 price tag. Time will tell.
My first sampler box wasn't a big hit for me. Too much cinnamon and spice for my tastes.
Bourbon and Rye were great. Whiskey bit like a Laredo Rattler
Not that great of a sampler for me. Was my first shipment, selected it because I grew up in San Antonio. I liked the single malt and rye was okay. My third on this sampler was the Alamo. Definitely ventured out on this one.
Very good single malt, black label was a close second and not a big fan of the rye.
the boubon was ok should have chilled it. first time I had tasted a malt and it was good not a big fan of the rye
Difficult to drink straight. Maybe with mixers.
The Alamo and Ranger Creek were less than desirable. The Balcones was excellent and by far the best of the three. Based on only 1/3 being what I would consider good whiskey, I can't recommend this taster for prospective tasters.
Upon ordering, there was hesitation because I’m a bourbon lover, and these are not bourbons. I wanted to venture out (not literally) and try something a little different, just to whet my appetite during the #stayathome crisis, and this was the only taster that even came close to my whiskey preference (please up your bourbon game, Flaviar). The Alamo (A) was good. Not great, but good. A little young and inexperienced, but a solid effort. Then the .44 rye came next (B), and no...not really my cup of tea. I can drink a higher rye mashbill (WT101 for example), but this was too rye forward, and possibly just needs to open up. Now, for some reason, I was excited to try the Balcones (C), and maybe I didn’t read the “single malt” on its label. It’s like a peaty bomb, and for those that like scotch, good on you, but count me the hell out. I sampled, and put the cap back on. I’ll give the rest to a willing friend, or maybe dump it in a Diet Coke. 5 stars instead of 1 because I was the one who ordered this s***.
Spicy all around, but none of them would make my regular drinking routine.
Didn’t like any of them.
Sample “A” was great. B and C were awful. Couldn’t finish the drink awful
My first tasting box and I was so excited when the old ball and chain sent me pics of the packages awaiting me after work! Balcones, Alamo, .44. In that order, since I’m ranking. Bravo for putting together quite a spread of tastes. Balcones Single Malt is the bottle to own.
This was my first taster set. It was fun to share with a friend and try to find all the tasting, nose, and finish notes, before looking at the flavor spiral and reading about the spirits.. following the “how to taste” section that is provided. I like that the three were different enough from each other to not feel I was drinking the same thing. I really liked one (Alamo) of three that I may add as a full bottle to my home bar sometime soon. So a pretty good experience over all.
Balcones Single Malt makes this box great. Amazing stuff.
All were tasty. We liked the Alamo and the .44 the best. BIG chocolate taste in the Balcones. Nice, smooth rye in the .44. The Alamo was surprisingly good for its age. Balcones was the most complex, but I think the Alamo and the .44 might have more potential.
I thought all the samples were great, shared them at a cocktail party.
To much spicy in this box
All 3 were ok.
Great tasting. Good representation of bourbons and rye.
Good if you want to try some whiskeys that are complex and unconventional in flavor. The Balcones is the best tasting with a great finish, while the Alamo has a wonderful smell and the Ranger creek has great complexity.
I did not enjoy any of the flavors that came with this tasting pack
Good mix, nice tasters.
Very nice mix...
Very dynamic group of whiskey. Go in with no expectations, but buckle up, it’s a wild ride. Changed my opinion about Texas whiskey, which now has my respect.
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