When you’re primarily a Brandy company in the middle of Bourbon country, you are surrounded by oak barrels. You travel around the town, the county, the state and you can breathe in the smell of bourbon aging all around you. With so much Bourbon aging that leads to bourbon bottling and that leads to lots of empty, well seasoned bourbon barrels all around. What better way to put those used barrels back to work then dropping in your own gin. Well, that’s exactly what Distiller Brandon O’Daniel has done at Copper & Kings American Brandy Company. (Sustainability at its best!)
Copper & Kings is launching a very limited release, small batch, artisanal gin. Double distilled in a Vendome copper pot still, “Alley Cat” gin is apple-brandy based with classic gin botanicals and aged in a Kentucky Bourbon barrel for 22 months. It is non-chill filtered and unadulterated by any post distillation infusion of flavor or color. You can learn more about their stills here.
Copper & Kings Stills: Isis, Magdalena and Sara
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“We like to do different things with our gin; no chill-filtration, an unusual apple-brandy base, just a double-distillation, no compounding and no GNS re-distillation.” said founder Joe Heron. “We like slightly oily, viscous barrel aged expressions, the “Old Tom” style profile, and Douglas Miller sets the tone with his beautiful illustrations, so we are going to keep picking from the same litter.” (Ha, cat jokes! Where’s the cat companion video Joe?)
“Whoa! Super smooth, huge aromatics, beautiful barrel, this cat’s cool,” said head distiller Brandon O’Daniel. “Sipped over ice with Butchertown Tonic, it’s amazing that with everything going on with the spirit it remains so drinkable and versatile.”
Copper & Kings Alley Cat Gin Tasting Notes
- Appearance: Not as dark as we expected after 22 months. Is there such a thing as botanically brown?
- Aroma: Piney, juniper and citrus forward but quite earthy and a little woodsy. Chartreuse?
- Taste: Not sweet. Very balanced and surprisingly little overt Bourbon notes like vanilla with faint fennel and spicy cinnamon on the back end, just a hint of orange blossom.
- Finish: Silky smooth with no sharp edges. Not spiky or hot but quite clean and crisp but definitely a creamy mouth-feel.
Alley Cat will offcially be launched Friday, April 8, 2016 at 8 p.m. with a seminar and demonstration on the history of gin usage in cocktails by Copper & Kings national brand ambassador Chris Wilkins, followed by Alley Cat gin tasting with head distiller Brandon O’Daniel. Artist Douglas Miller who created the original illustration for the label will also be on hand to sign bottles.
Only 750 bottles of Copper & Kings Alley Cat Gin will be produced and sold at the distillery, with a “tiny” selection of bars and liquor stores. Alley Cat Gin is 98 proof, 49% ABV with a retail price of $40 for a 375mL bottle.
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