Blending the perfect bourbon is an art. A mixture of many parts — the terroir of the grain, the mash bill ratio, the char of the barrels, the age of the bourbon and, of course, the palate of the blender — comes together to create a full picture of the spirit. Creating a bourbon for the curious at heart is a little bit of science, but mostly an art.
And now, Pinhook Bourbon is continuing to showcase how aligned art and blending truly are. The brand has launched its third vintage of the highly limited Artist Series collection, Artist Series No. 3 Double-Blended Bourbon. Pinhook Bourbon’s Artist Series dedicates each vintage’s label to feature original work commissioned by a renowned artist and inspired by the whiskey itself. This year’s vintage features artwork by New Orleans-based artist, Alexa Pulitzer.
“The limited Artist Series has always been a fun way for me to collaborate and work in a creative space with tastemakers from different industries,” says Sean Josephs, Pinhook master blender. “Each release is unique and tells a different story, from how it’s blended and proofed to the design of each bottle. To celebrate this year’s release and how it came to be, we’ve collaborated with Alexa Pulitzer to help tell the story.”
In this year’s vintage, Pinhook brings an innovative twist to whiskey by borrowing a technique used in making Cognac. During that process, Brandy is taken from barrels blended, and then returned to the barrels for further aging.
In keeping with creating art from this spirit, Pinhook has re-barreled one micro-blend at cask strength and a second at 110 proof to see how wood and whiskey might interact at varying proofs. Through this technique in combining liquids from different barrels, the most captivating bourbon is produced, deep and rich with harmonious fruit-forward flavors like apricot, dried mango. A work of art not only outside the bottle, but inside as well.
Get a close-up of the barrels:
- Batch One: 5-barrel micro-blend at cask strength, with a deep nose of allspice, walnut, dried papaya, and light brown sugar, perfect for the adventurous palate. Notes of apricot, crème brulee, cinnamon, and dark chocolate round out the palate, bringing a stunning finish to sippers.
- Batch Two: 6-barrel blend at 108.1 proof, with aromatic notes of pear, honey, cardamom, and almonds leading to a bright palate of dried mango, salted caramel, elderflower, and black pepper.
To capture the story behind this bottle, Alexa lends her hand to creating an illustration of Pinhook’s master blender, Sean Josephs, deeply engrossed in the blending process. In her signature style, Alexa infuses her native culture with her vast experiences abroad to create her iconic, sophisticated artwork; she infuses that style into the handcrafted image that adorns Artist Series No. 3 Double-Blended Bourbon.
“Sean is always thinking outside of the box and finding new ways to create a unique whiskey, which is exactly what I wanted to capture — a blender who finds the beauty of art in the science of blending,” said Alexa Pulitzer. “As an artist, I enjoy pushing creative boundaries and working with those that foster individuality and originality in others. I was thrilled to work with Sean, a man who is also dedicated to quality and artistry, on this exclusive release.”
Distilled at Castle & Key and bottled by Kentucky Artisan Distillery, this bottle retails for $81.99. It will be available on Breeze, Pinhook’s text-to-buy service, and at limited specialty stores nationwide. You can also learn more about the series at www.pinhookbourbon.com.