GSN Review: Stellum Black Rye & Stellum Bourbon

Earlier this year, Stellum Spirits launched its flagship Stellum Bourbon and Stellum Rye whiskeys to celebrate the modern-day whiskey drinker. Now, during the winter season, the brand introduced Stellum Black: a limited-release premium expression of the inaugural offerings, designed to carry the same classic, cask strength flavor profiles into a more refined, elegant, and complex blend. 

Produced by Barrell Craft Spirits, Stellum Black reveals a natural evolution of the inaugural cask strength bourbon and rye whiskey blends, using a meticulous blending approach to layer older reserve barrels into the original blends. The result is something both entirely new and deeply familiar.

“For Stellum Black, we maintained the soul of Stellum while creating a new dimension of flavor by adding reserve barrels from our stocks,” said Joe Beatrice, Barrell Craft Spirits Founder. “We’ve refined this layering technique over time which produces whiskeys focused on both immediate flavor and a long-developed complexity. The result is an entirely new set of whiskeys that has its roots firmly planted in the inaugural whiskeys.” 

Stellum Black Bourbon and Stellum Black Rye were distilled and aged in IN, KY and TN, and bottled at 109.22 proof (54.61% ABV) and 114.26 proof (57.13% ABV), respectively.

Stellum Black Bourbon – GSN’s Remarks: Heady char and cask on the nose, creating a woody, dark, expression of barrelhouse. Upon the first taste we find burnt sugar, molasses and toasted nuts along with spicy elements of mexican chocolate. Very dry and woody on the back of the palate. This is the flagship Stellum ramped up to 11. Oak, tannin and wood are the key indicators here. Things become more balanced and amenable when brought down to a comfortable proof with some water or ice. GSN Rating: A-

Stellum Black Rye – GSN’s Remarks: Sparky and perky nose of rye spice. A quite complex melange of dark bread and dried cooking herbs. Very engaging and inquisitive. A very friendly welcome. The first notes of flavor are as expected. Spice driven, but also with plenty of chewy caramel and chocolate. The rye plays well with its neighbors, making a perfect marriage of the best of a bakery and a barrelhouse. For a rye, this one sings. Really worth the upgrade from the flagship expression, and exceptionally well blended. It would be interesting to find out more about the ratios of the various ages involved in this blend. GSN Rating: A+

For more information go to: Stellum

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GSN Review: Stellum Spirits Whiskies

Stellum Spirits, recently launched its inaugural flagship offerings, including bourbon (blue label), rye (green label), and single barrels, which are all bottled at cask strength. The new brand is produced by Barrell Craft Spirits® (BCS), the award-winning independent blender and bottler of unique aged, cask-strength sourced whiskey and rum.

The launch of Stellum Spirits is the result of BCS’ years of  innovation in American whiskey. This new project investigates the importance of nuance and micro differentiation in a paired down and minimalist setting. This is whiskey factored down to its most defining essentials, blended and packaged with an eye towards clean lines and definition.

“We wanted to create a brand that brings American Whiskey into the modern age with simple elegant blends and single barrels selected with care and intention,” said Founder Joe Beatrice. “Our whiskeys are created through a rigorous process of study, observation, and experimentation. We are driven by progress, polish and—above all—attention to detail. We will always think critically about how to make our whiskey better.”

Stellum Bourbon is bottled at 114.98 proof (57.49% ABV). Stellum Rye is bottled at 116.24 proof (58.12% ABV).

GSN’s Remarks: As with each spirit from Barrell, these are both stellar examples of whiskeycraft. The bourbon is straightforward and has a lightly sweet edge, but the majority of flavor leans towards oak and char. The body is tight and there are more high notes than low. A standard bearer for a rock solid bourbon. The rye has more of an impact due to the intensity of the spicy grain. A rich and more broad palate of flavor with a hefty body makes this spirit ideal for old school cocktail classics like a Sazerac or a Vieux Carre. We especially enjoy the long and lingering finish which begs for just one more sip. GSN Ratings: Stellum Bourbon A-, Stellum Rye A

For more information go to: Stellum