The return of the Hirsch brand to liquor store shelves continues with The Horizon, another MGP-sourced that’s made from a blend of two mashbills, and while it doesn’t carry an official age statement, it’s effectively a 5 year old bottling. Here’s the minutiae:
The Horizon combines two straight bourbons distilled in Lawrenceburg, IN, and is intended to allow whiskey enthusiasts to navigate the landscape of bourbon. Each bottle of The Horizon, which is 92 proof, provides the exact batch specifications on the rear label, for the bourbon enthusiast who seeks that level of detail. The inaugural batch, AHH0320, is made up of two components: 94% of the blend is distilled from a traditional mash bill of 75% corn, 21% rye, 4% malted barley aged 5 years and 4 months; the remaining 6% is distilled from a high-rye mash aged 6 years and 2 months for added complexity.
This is quite an unusual bourbon from Hirsch, from start to finish. The nose is lightly sweet and woody but not particularly oaky, leaning more on notes of sandalwood and hemp, all slightly perfumed and dusted with a sort of unripe, green nut character. From there, the palate kicks off with a toasted marshmallow character, then takes on an odd combination of nutty, mushroomy, and grassy notes as it develops in the glass. There’s quite a significant savory quality here, one that is quite drying on the tongue and much in need of some sugar to wake it up. The finish is equally tight — beefy and a bit hoary, with almost no residual sweetness. Rather, the denouement takes the whiskey to notes of Asian spice market and a return to dry burlap/hemp notes. It’s not bad by any stretch, but it is decidedly odd.