George Dickel Single Barrel Review

George Dickel 9 yr Single Barrel Review
At this point I’ve covered just about every current George Dickel offering with the exception of the 9 year single barrel and the 14 year single barrel and today we’re knocking the George Dickel 9 year Single Barrel off the list. I know I say this every time I do a single barrel review, but I think it bears repeating. Since this literally comes from one single barrel your own experience might be a bit different unless you get a bottle from the exact same barrel and since Dickel doesn’t put the barrel number on the bottle it’s going to be a little hard to tell.

If you’ve already watched the video they sent us about how George Dickel is made then you already know what I’m about to say next. Which is, the thing that impresses me the most about Dickel is the way this is well and truly handcrafted. No computers, minimal machinery and a whole lot of elbow grease and ingenuity. Call it craft, call it artisanal, call it whatever the hell you want because at the end of the day it just means they put out a good product and at they do it the hard way.

Could Diageo afford to upgrade the place? Sure, but until they do (if they do) we’ll just be enjoying this hand crafted goodness. And speaking of hand crafted goodness, check out the video embedded below the review to see how that awesome box behind the whiskey came to be.

George Dickel Single Barrel Review

Bottle: 134

ABV: 51.5%
Age: 9 years
Price: $45*
Distiller: George Dickel
Mashbill: 84% corn, 8% rye & 8 % barley

EYE
Ruddy caramel

NOSE
I know I’m committing a heresy here, but it smells like bourbon, and a really good bourbon at that. Caramel, wood, vanilla, corn, spice and a cherry heavy dark fruit gallop out of the glass; it’s something that I’m whole heartedly enjoying. As I keep sniffing and letting it open more the aroma gets deeper with notes of toffee, maple bars, toasted sugar, charred oranges and a touch of a musty dusty quality emerging. A splash of water works to open them up even further.

PALATE
The wood is bold and creates a nice floor for the organized chaos that follows it. Caramel, charred citrus, cherry and dried strawberry heavy dark fruit, vanilla, brulee, cinnamon, leather, clove, corn, a touch of fresh herbs like parsley and thyme and it just goes on and on. It’s a very toothsome and complex flavor that becomes even more expressive with that previously mentioned dash of water.

FINISH
A long woody ending pocketed with notes of caramel, baking spices, vanilla, mint and toffee. A lovely ending to this whisky.

BALANCE, BODY & FEEL
It really is spot on when it comes to balance. Everything works together and gets bolstered by a firm full body and a heavy satiny texture that borders on luxurious.

OVERALL
Damn. The more Dickel I have the more I like it. I think it’s an underrated distillery and this single barrel offering is an exceptional example of what the folks in Tullahoma are able to crank out. The nose is refreshing and bold at the same time, the palate is complex and dramatic, and the finish is supple and surprising. Simply put it’s a really good whiskey. Slowly but surly Dickel is creeping in and conquering more and more of my shelf space and you know what? I’m 100% okay with that.

SCORE: 92/100

 

*Disclosure: This was graciously sent to me by the company for the purposes of this review. The views, opinions, and tasting notes are 100% my own.

Josh Peters
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Josh Peters

I read about, think about, write about, and drink whisk(e)y. In short, it's my passion.
Josh Peters
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14 Responses to George Dickel Single Barrel Review

  1. Yep. Reading your reviews seems to send me right out to the store! So far, after your reviews, I’ve picked up a Glenlivet Nadurra, a High West Rendezvous Rye, High West American Prairie Reserve, and, after reading this, I picked up another single barrel Dickel from my local store.

    I’ve enjoyed them all, Josh, but you’re killing me! 🙂

  2. Thanks for the review Josh, I can’t tell you enough how much I enjoy your site. I check this site for updates more than I check my e-mail. I’ve gotta thank you for the work you do- you have made me a huge Dickel convert. I’ve picked up Dickel 12 & barrel select based on your reviews (you’ve converted me to a huge Wild Turkey fan too) & both have blown me away. I live right by the IL/MO & KY borders & all 3 states usually get a really good whiskey selection, but I have been completely unable to find this. Is this a wide release, or is it something that Dickel just does as a store bottling?

    • Hey Joe,

      First off… thank you 🙂 It takes a lot of time and effort to keep this thing running and hearing folks appreciate it makes my day.

      Back to the bottle at hand. The Single Barrel is done at the distillery, but outside of the distillery you have to find stores that have bought their own barrel of this. These are all “store selection” barrels. When I was at GD they mentioned that they were slowing down the store picks for a bit to let more stock age, but more should be coming out soon. The issue is finding a store that’s carrying one. Here in Los Angeles I only know of 3 stores that got one in the last year and they’re all out. Unfortunately outside of going to the distillery the only way to get one is to find a store that’s ordering their own barrel.

      Cheers!

  3. @ Joe re: Dickel;

    Head to Macadoodles in Pineville, MO just north of the Arkansas border. I was there two days ago visiting family in NW Arkansas. Macadoodles had a whole case of this in the store. Excellent…I should have bought more…

    Cheers
    John

  4. Are you sure this is a single barrel? I just picked up a bottle and it says on the label “hand crafted in small batches” but also “hand selected barrel”. Isnt that contradictory? Dickel needs to rename this stuff because right now its too similar in name to barrel select. They also dont have it on their website which seems odd. The bottle i got was from total wine but didnt have a label saying it was bottled for that store. Seems odd to me.

    • Hey MW,

      Very sure this is a single barrel. The “hand crafted in small batches” is in regards to their process. Their equipment is incredibly small, especially when compared to someone like Wild Turkey, so every run is a “small batch” in comparison to any of the other major distilleries. This is a single barrel from one of those small distillation runs they do. Definitely some marketing mumbo jumbo happening there.

      That is odd about it not being labeled for the store. Every bottle I’ve ever picked up (3 in total now) have stated it was picked for that store.

    • Hey Andre. It’s very possible since Jack Daniels doesn’t seem to let their whiskey be independently bottled, but I haven’t tried it yet so I can’t say for sure.

  5. LOL!!! In the video,just before he puts on the plate that says”HANDMADE the HARD WAY” you can see the bottle is half empty,when it was full earlier in the video.ENJOY making those wood cases?????

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