Stagg Jr. Bourbon Batch 15 Hits the Mark In Spite of its Heat

Review by Mark Pringle |

80 Highly Rated Bourbon General Review of Stagg Jr. Batch 15, Batch Batch 15

Stagg Jr. Bourbon Batch 15, which drinks at a 131.1 proof level, is a bourbon enthusiast's treasure. However, it is not for the faint of heart because of the high alcohol by volume content. Still, this is one Buffalo Trace Distillery whiskey worth the hunt. Here's my review...

Rating: 80


Ratings breakdown based on a 100 point scale.

  • 90-100 Exceptional
  • 80-89 Very Good
  • 70-79 Average
  • 60-69 Below Average
  • 50-60 Drain Pour

Detailed Tasting Notes

Nose Review - Rating: 84

Even though the ethanol smell is very mild on this 131.1 proof bourbon, it’s always good to let it sit in the glass a while before you start to knows it. I did this with Stagg Jr. and to my surprise, there was this chewy, candy sweet, and thick aroma. In the middle of all of this is an underlying pecan note. I keep smelling this because it is so rich and there are notes that I can’t figure out. I need more experience.

Palate Review - Rating: 79

On the palate, there's no getting around that 131.1 proof. But, if you can get past the heat (its hard to do), there are actually some rather nice notes beneath the proof; sweetness, syrupy caramel, butterscotch, and a hint of vanilla. The sweetness comes and goes quickly followed by oak and heat. The mouthfeel is thick and excellent. Buttery spice combined with black pepper. Maybe a hint of licorice. Each taste of Stagg Jr. seems to be slightly different. Sometimes you can taste the nuances and other times the proof overshadows the taste. Sadly, the heat overshadows most of the flavors.

Finish Review - Rating: 82

There’s a good long black pepper heat finish but I would like to see some other flavor notes in there somewhere. Nevertheless, you almost get two finishes with Stagg Jr.

Uniqueness Review - Rating: 79

The taste of Stagg Jr. is very traditional for bourbon. However, there are few whiskeys available with all of the attributes of Stagg Jr. and at this proof level.

Value Review - Rating: 79

As with most Buffalo Trace Distillery spirits, it is almost impossible to pay retail for it; what is around 69.99. However, this is one of the few BT spirits under $100 worth the hunt.

Author: Mark Pringle
Smell IS taste. I am just a guy who has been hit with the bourbon bug and who has come to the conclusion that life is too short to drink average tasting bourbons. Go Gators!
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