Diageo's Rhetoric 24 Year Old Bourbon Continues Aging Series Of Bottlings - The Whiskey Wash
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Diageo’s Rhetoric 24 Year Old Bourbon Continues Aging Series Of Bottlings

By Nino Marchetti / April 24, 2018

Another year, another decades old Rhetoric bourbon has emerged from Diageo as part of their ever evolving Orphan Barrel series. Said to be the twelfth release in this line up, the new 24 year old variant of this Kentucky whiskey follows in the footsteps of previous bottlings dating back some years now in both age statement and when it was released.

As with earlier incarnations, the Rhetoric 24 Year Old, according to those behind it, is designed to showcase year over year what an older bourbon expresses itself as during its continued time in barrel. This experiment previously had an end date in mind – 2019 as a 25 year old – but now that future is not quite as clear as Diageo seems to have dropped the reference. The spirits giant now appears to be speaking of it as a more annual release, being “progressively aged and re-released annually at a year older.” Does that mean we might one day see a 30 year old Rhetoric?

Rhetoric 24 Year Old Bourbon

Whatever the case, the current 24 year old exists from what one assumes are slowing dwindling bourbon stocks found in the old Stitzel-Weller warehouses in Louisville, Kentucky. It was distilled between 1990 and 1993 at the Bernheim distillery, “historically located at 17th and Breckenridge” in the same city and at the time owned by United Distillers.

Rhetoric 24 Year Old Bourbon, bottled at 90.8 proof, has a mash bill that’s 86% corn, 8% barley and 6% rye. It will price at $130, and limited official tasting notes suggest an “aroma of rich vanilla oak, brown sugar and chocolate. Taste begins with orchard fruit accented with a hint of allspice, and gives way to a warming finish with of nutmeg and caramel notes.”