If you’ve been looking for something different in your wine glass, look no further. Jacob’s Creek offers its Double Barrel line of wines that were matured in traditional toasted wine barrels and then finished in whiskey barrels for a unique mouthfeel. These Australian beauties have layers of complexity and integrated tannins, and they are smooth and smoky.
Wow. Aging wine in whiskey barrels? Brilliant!
How did we find them? We were fortunate to join a Jacob’s Creek tasting of a Cabernet Sauvignon and a Shiraz — before and after they were finished in aged whiskey barrels.
The difference was amazing, dramatic and very positive — the “after” wines were rounder, smoother, richer and elegant. The wines did not taste like whiskey, but expressed the character and nuances of the whiskey barrel on the palate.
Jacob’s Creek Chief Winemaker Ben Bryant said: “Our vision for this project was to create something truly innovative and extraordinary. After much experimentation, we can confidently say that we have crafted something special and unique.”
“We wanted the flavor of the wine to predominate, yet there had to be a noticeable impact from the use of the whisky barrels,” he said. “So we chose parcels of wine that were particularly ripe, from premium growing regions, and with such intense fruit flavor and big tannins that they would benefit from the second barrel treatment.”
Cabernet Sauvignon is king to our palates when it comes to Washington state and California wine. But in Australia, Shiraz wins every time.
Double Barrel Shiraz (Barossa, Australia) – $19.99
The rich Shiraz was aged in Scotch whiskey barrels to provide complex, well-developed characteristics. Winemaker tasting notes:
Lifted licorice spice aroma with dark plum and toasty notes; on the palate, complex and smooth with layers of rich plum, fruitcake and dark chocolate notes.
Double Barrel Cabernet Sauvignon (Coonawarra, Australia) – $19.99
Cabernet Sauvignon was finished in aged Irish whiskey barrels to smooth the flavor and add incredible richness through the full length of the palate. Winemaker tasting notes:
Cassis aromas with mint, dark olive and caramel notes; on the palate, rich flavor consisting of black fruit and herbal notes with soft tannins.
The double barrel wines were released in Australia late in 2014 and have been very popular in that country. Jacob’s Creek is now introducing them to U.S. markets.
Samples were provided by Jacob’s Creek and Pernod Ricard USA. But we’ll be buying some bottles and introducing them to our friends.
Margot and Dave