Angels Envy Cask Strength Bourbon 2020 120.4 Proof
Angel’s Envy Cask Strength Bourbon is finally available for the first time in all 50 states. Fewer than 18,000 bottles are being distributed throughout the country. The port wine barrel-finished cask strength bourbon has been reliably released at years end since 2012 as a special release from this Kentucky distillery. The following year, in 2013, F. Paul Pacult’s Spirit Journal ranked this whiskey the “Best Spirit in the World.” The 2020 edition showcases a booming 120.4 proof that’s just shy of last year’s strength.
Angel’s Envy characteristically releases bourbon that is finished in Portuguese port wine casks. Every year Wes Henderson, co-founder and chief innovation officer, along with his sons Kyle and Andrew, set aside the most exceptional of these barrels for the cask strength release. As the years have gone on it seems that more and more of these barrels have been found worthy. Just 12,000 bottles of the rare bourbon were released in 2018, compared to over 14,000 last year and 17,400 this time around.
Port wine casks are chosen to impart a variety of nuanced flavors onto the bourbon. Fruit notes are to be expected with previous releases being commonly described as “jammy.” Bing cherry and other dark fruit flavors have been consistent themes along with the overall high rating this bourbon commands. Regardless of the release Angel’s Envy Cask Strength is continuously met with high accolades and the 2020 rendition aims to not disappoint.
120.4 proof (60.2% ABV); mash bill of 72% corn, 18% rye, 10% malted barley
Appearance: This whiskey pours as a deep amber that takes on a copper tone as it swirls in the glass.
Nose: The nose is cloying with peanut brittle, cinnamon stick, rum raisin, molasses and fresh cut firewood.
Palate: Though the proof is something to be reckoned with there is an immediate burst of fruit flavor. I tasted ripe plum soaked in maple syrup with the distinct sourness of tart cherries. The warmth of oak and leather are noticeable on the finish.