We have reached a new pinnacle in hype churning. Leave it to the bourbon world, the kings of “zero value added” transactions to take us here. So a bunch of rich dudes from Nike and Facebook decided that they wanted to be master distillers. They did what anyone would do, hire Jim Rutledge from four roses to do all the work, then hire a hype sneaker designer to design a bottle, charge $170.00 retail.
The final piece of this puzzle is shiftless liquor store magnates who have never opened a bottle flip them for $400 immediately, as is tradition. But is Blue Run 14 year good?
Well yeah, it’s fantastic, largely because 14 year old Four Roses is amazing. It’s contract sourced, contract bottled, marked up, flipped, and then tucked on a West Elm bookcase next to the Portrait of Cornian Grey. Ageless.
The best is the press release “Blue Run features the brand’s signature gold butterfly medallion which symbolizes the metamorphosis of the bourbon industry as it reaches a broader audience which appreciates fine bourbon through Blue Run.” Jim Rutledge picking out the teenage casks is like “thanks, guy who invented Facebook Marketplace, for giving me this boarder audience of people who will never open this, taste it, or know about my involvement.”
The nose isn’t the usual rye punch 4R is known for and instead leans towards a refined crème brulee peanut brittle aspect, allspice and Chick-o-stick. The taste shows its age and maturity allowing ample oak, bandsaw, lacquer, bananas fosters, and an experience akin to a proofed up Eagle Rare 17. The 113 proof is that flawless strike zone of warmth like your lil tumtum is a caramel ramekin being pulled out of the oven.
The finish really embraces the lumberyard and state fair churro aspect, that Red Hots profile found in Bookers Oven Buster, long dry closer makes me wonder if it is even older than 14 years, but resale is high enough as is.
After being thoroughly ripped off by Peyton Manning and his 13 year Tennessee juice, this is refreshing. Here’s where I amp up the relatability and go “JUST BUY KNOB CREEK 9 YEAR” and we engage in class warfare so everyone gets to feel special and alive. WE GOTTA GET YOU OUT ON THAT LAKE