Discovering Pacific Northwest Whiskey

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Sandwiched between our Canadian neighbors to the north and the towering California redwood trees to the south, the picturesque Pacific Northwest is making waves in the craft beverage world for all the right reasons. While wine and beer have led the charge putting the area on the fermented map, it’s whiskey that is stepping into the spotlight.

The palate of the traditional American whiskey ranges from the dryer bite of rye to the nuanced cedar and sweetness of the classic bourbon. When these whiskeys are born and raised in the shadow of the grunge scene, they tend to take on a heartier, richer quality. The rye whiskey tends to pack a punch with deep earth tones of orange peel and allspice, while the bourbons have a floral nose and finish with burnt brown sugar.

While rye is blossoming slowly into one of the go-to foundations of classic whiskey-based cocktails, distillers like Mel Heim of Eastside Distilling, are exploring the full range of rye. It’s been the Pacific Northwest bourbons that has garnered most of the recent accolades in the craft spirit world.

Bourbon’s easy approachability has made its way across the Mississippi and found a place to blossom among the Pacific Northwest pine trees. The endearing toffee notes and sweeter butterscotch have become a favorite among both classic bourbon lovers and new whiskey enthusiasts exploring the fruits of Pacific Northwest distillers.

The beautiful thing about distilling in the Pacific Northwest is that distilleries have the freedom to experiment without ruffling the feathers on an old guard, which in turn creates a new class of Oregon whiskey.

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“We are not emulating bourbon of the past, we are boldly celebrating bourbon of the present and future.” - Mel Heim, Master Distiller/Blender

Eastside Distilling has been at the forefront of the Oregon whiskey frontier for 10 years. The rich range of whiskey showcases the unique style of the Pacific Northwest in a way that set it apart from the crowd and invite drinkers to embrace them. The use of Quercus Garryana, or native Oregon oak, lovingly stamps these Oregon whiskey varieties with Mel Heim’s fingerprint.

The Burnside Buckman RSV Bourbon takes all of the elements of Heim’s talent and style and bundles them into one celebratory bottle.

“Our Burnside Buckman RSV Bourbon is a celebration of our 10-year anniversary and the newest member of our highly acclaimed Burnside Whiskey family. We’ve mellowed some of the best aged bourbons in our distinctive western U.S. Quercus garryana casks to create a one-of-a-kind premium bourbon experience. This limited-edition bottling is available while supplies last.

“We are proud of this uniquely smooth and satisfying bourbon expression which exemplifies the passion that Eastside Distilling has in creating the highest quality craft spirits as we head into our second decade.” - Mel Heim, Master Distiller/Blender

This single expression elevates the Pacific Northwest whiskey style into an elegant, yet bold style. As the character of the region’s whiskey distilling and blending matures, offerings like the Burnside Buckman RSV Bourbon will continue to push the boundaries while holding true to the defiant and unapologetic culture that thrives in the year-round rain.