American Adventures – Pine Barrens Single Malt 47.5%

The Whisky Ladies came up with whisky tasting order for our American adventures, kicking off with single malts and more specifically Pine Barrens.

Originally known for their vodka, the folks over at  Long Island Spirits  decided to experiment with whiskies. A few years ago, our original tasting group were introduced to Rough Rider with their ‘Bull Moose’ 3 Barrel Rye – it was a brash young and exceedingly sweet.

Since then, Long Island Spirits have rebranded their Rough Rider series and introduced a new Single Malt line under the Pine Barrens label – named after their water source from the Pine Barrens forest preserve.

Here is what more we know –  Pine Barrens is catering to enticing shifting beer drinkers to whiskey rather than specifically targeting whisky aficionados. The beer used is from Old Howling Bastard barleywine ale and it is aged typically for ‘about a year’, meaning it is quite young indeed!

Yet it seemed the right place to start our American whisky evening…


Pine Barrens Single Malt (Batch 13) 47.5%

  • Nose – Quite hoppy on the nose, a bit sharp initially, very bright with a dash of cinnamon, honey, caramel, then citrus spice and nutmeg, a bit of woodsy pine cones, as it aired became even more fruity, wait longer and tulsi (sacred basil) joins the mix
  • Palate – Whisky beer, surprisingly good, very easy to drink, more of that little woodsy feel, very palatable
  • Finish – Don’t laugh, but best described as a burp!

We really didn’t know what to expect.

And while this is not a whisky for a whisky snob, it is quite enjoyable as a beverage. Sure there are only 1 1/2 dimensions, but that’s ok. Particularly for a warm Mumbai evening where a heavy whisky just isn’t your mood, this is a refreshing change.

Oddly when we tried to think of what to eat with it? Pumpkin pie was mentioned. Clearly we were in a North American mode to think of a quintessential fall treat… particularly with Hallowe’en around the corner.

We certainly enjoyed an opportunity to try something a bit different… pushing the boundaries of what whisk(e)y can be!

Here is what the folks over at Pine Barrens have to say:

Pine Barrens is the first American Single Malt Whisky to be distilled on Long Island. Instead of creating whisky from a regular mash, Pine Barrens uses an actual finished 10%ABV barley wine English styled Ale Beer that has a high hop count of 70 IBU’s.

The Ale beer is traditionally brewed to its perfect drinkability, double pot distilled, and finally aged in petite new American Oak casks to achieve an incredibly high quality whisky.

The result is spicy, rich velvet smooth maltiness, sweet hints of nutmeg, cinnamon, and caramel qualities on the finish. The hoppy flavor also shines through, which beer geeks will love, providing that same sweet on the tongue and smoothness throughout.

Here is what others have to say:

Other whiskies sampled in our American evening included:

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Whisky Ladies go on an American Adventure…

This wasn’t our first flirtation with American whiskies… nope we had an earlier evening combining some whisky standards in cocktails. However that night there was only one American single malt (Hudson).

For this evening, we planned three whiskies which somehow morphed into five bottles and a jar – funny how that happens with these ladies!


In this case we managed to get our hands on:

The Whisky Ladies debated the whisky tasting order for our American adventures and finally decided to split the evening between single malts – moonshine – bourbons.

Then came the question of which whisky to start our evening off with… given Pine Barrens is known for being geared towards beer drinkers, we thought it a rather fitting start!

From there we moved on to Colorado’s Stranahan’s which… ahem… reminded us why we don’t tend to be big American whisky fans.

Followed by the lovely Westland Sherry which reminded us to stop being such whisky snobs and simply enjoy a good dram!

Break time with the Ole Smoky – dutifully drunk straight from the jar. It felt like we were channeling our inner “Mellie” Grant with her moonshine stashes all over the White House (Scandal).

Then we cracked open the AD Laws Four Grain Straight Bourbon, pronouncing it rather yummy, partly as it isn’t a typical bourbon.

And finally closed our evening with a proper bourbon – the Woodford Reserve.

Other American adventures:

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