Whiskey Review: Crux Fermentation Project Straight Bourbon Whiskey, Batch No. 1

, | June 2, 2022

Editor’s Note: This whiskey was provided to us as a review sample by the Crux Fermentation Project. This in no way, per our editorial policies, influenced the final outcome of this review.

Fulfilling a dream – this is how the team behind the Crux Fermentation Project describe releasing their Straight Bourbon Whiskey, Batch No. 1. Crux Fermentation Project, as suggested by their name, has historically been known as a fermentation project, producing beer at their brewer-owned and operated facility in Bend, Oregon. However, Crux has never limited their fermentation to just traditional beers; they are also known for cider, house-blended wine, and a beer-inspired food menu. So, what did they do next? The craft brewers at Crux set their sights on whiskey, but they couldn’t achieve their whiskey dreams alone – that is where Pursuit Distilling Co. comes in.

“This collaboration has been nothing short of inspirational. Sam and Tyler have embraced the concept from the start to develop a whiskey that defies the norm with layers and layers of intrigue.” – Larry Sidor, Crux Fermentation Project Master Brewer & Co-Founder

Pursuit Distilling Co., located in Enumclaw, Washington, produces flavored whiskeys, American single-malt whiskeys, and vodka. In partnership with the distillery, Crux fulfilled their long-time dream of creating a unique bourbon that is inspired by what they describe as the best ryes, bourbons, and single malts. This Straight Bourbon Whiskey, Small Batch No. 1 is being sold in limited release at Pursuit Distilling Co.’s tasting room, and a few select liquor stores in Bend, Oregon.

Crux and Pursuit Distilling Co. have released a young bourbon with a unique flavor profile. The heat and moderately high level of spice are better represented here than in many bourbons of this age.

Crux Fermentation Project Straight Bourbon review

The new bourbon done between Crux and Pursuit (image via Crux Fermentation Project)

Tasting Notes: Crux Fermentation Project Straight Bourbon Whiskey, Batch No. 1

Vital Stats: Aged 2 years in charred, new American oak barrels.100 proof (50% ABV). Mash bill undisclosed. SRP: $75.00.

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Appearance: This spirit’s hue is a light golden honey that also reminded me of goldenrod paper. It is just a touch darker than the harvest gold color that was a popular style for 1990 era appliances.

Nose: An opening that is mild, especially considering its proof. This is followed by stronger, but still pleasant notes of vanilla and currant. You may also find faint notes of spiced orange, reminiscent of a fall seasonal scented candle.

Palate: Smooth at first sip, this spirit has a stronger spice than most young bourbons, with notes of brown sugar, vanilla, current and citrus fruit. Finally, this unique bourbon has a long tail that leaves a welcome lingering heat in your mouth.



This offering was designated a “very small batch” with only a limited release both in terms of bottles and geographic availability. The Crux Fermentation Project Straight Bourbon Whiskey, Small Batch No. 1 is pleasantly, but not overwhelmingly, spicy with a faint sweetness, chocolate and a mild oak finish. If you can find it, pick up a bottle and raise a glass to a unique partnership, and a whiskey dream fulfilled.

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Devon Lyon

Devon Lyon has spent the past two decades producing video content as well as writing copy and scripts for clients around the globe. But no matter how strong his natural wanderlust, it’s the Pacific Northwest he calls home. Whether it’s the growing local craft spirit scene, world-class wines, or a...