Ball Square Fine Wines Rolls Out a Rare Bourbon

An exclusive private label from Angel’s Envy is now on hand. Up next is a whiskey barrel-aged brew from Idle Hands.

angel's envy

Photo courtesy of Angel’s Envy/Facebook

A relative newcomer to the American spirits scene, but one that’s been receiving plenty of attention since its arrival, Angel’s Envy is the micro-distilling side venture of Lincoln Henderson, former master distiller at Woodford Reserve and an inaugural member of the Kentucky Bourbon Hall of Fame. Starting this week, an exclusive private label offering of Henderson’s much-lauded whiskey can now be found at Ball Square Fine Wines, thanks to manager Nate Kruback.

The special blend, with whiskeys ranging from four to six years of age, was chosen by Kruback who selected components from three distinct areas of the Angel’s Envy rick house. “Two of the samples were very old and mature and showing a lot of the angel’s share or port character, while the other was younger and very hot,” Kruback says. “The ratio we settled on was 55 percent of one that was the oldest and with very little mouthfeel, 35 percent of the heaviest and most full-bodied, and 10 percent of the super bright one. Instead of just being an old whiskey—because I think some whiskey can show too much maturity—that little bit of youth really woke it up and brightened it.”

Angel’s Envy finished the bourbon by aging the final product in used port pipes, which lends the whiskey dried fig, pipe tobacco, and fortified wine characteristics. The cask produced 70 gallons, which amounted to 60 cases of 750 ml bottles. Ball Square released the whiskey on June 2, and with fast sales, project the supply to only last a couple of months.

In a related side project, Ball Square has since brought the used whiskey cask over to Everett’s Idle Hands Brewery where they’re producing an exclusive barrel aged strong ale. Kruback was relatively tight-lipped about the special brew, but describes it as somewhere “between a wheat wine and a barley wine; It’s a cereal wine if you will.”

The beer, set to be released sometime in September, is made with rye and a new seasonal yeast strain. “The yeast isn’t being marketed as tied to a specific brewery, but it’s a very highly sought after New England brewery that has been using it for their imperial IPA,” Kruback says. “But it turns out it works beautifully with strong ales, as well.”

$39.99 per bottle, 716 Broadway, Somerville; 617-623-9500 or ballsquarefinewines.com.

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