Bache Gabrielsen in Forbes
A Focus on Oak (But Not How You Might Think) - When it comes to wines and spirits, oak can cause a wide array of reactions. Does one type of wood or toasting add to a tipple or take away from it? Should it be utilized as a seasoning agent or a defining characteristic? How does it impact the texture of the liquid that’s been aged inside the barrel? Lately, it seems as if consumers are wrapping their arms a bit more around the use of wood, and producers are rolling out products that leverage the benefits with a level of attention to minute detail that consumers are responding positively to. From the Johnnie Walker Blenders’ Batch Triple Grain American Oak ($29.99), a lively and lovely blended Scotch whisky that was aged for 10 years; to the Coopers’ Craft “Toasted Wood Whiskey” Kentucky Straight Bourbon (approx. $30), whose name is a reference to the people who make and repair the barrels themselves; to Bache-Gabrielsen American Oak Cognac ($39.99), a generous, velvety bottling that was aged for at least six months in Tennessee oak barrels. This is a fascinating subcategory, and one that I expect to continue to grow.