Sipp’n Corn Tasting Notes: Elijah Craig 12-Year Barrel Proof 2022 (A122, B522, and C922).

After some wide variety in proof, the three 2022 batches of Elijah Craig Barrel Proof have established a trend of just over 60% ABV—A122 is 60.4%; B522 is 60.5%, and C922 is the highest at 62.4%.  Actually, the last batch of 2021 (C921) started the trend with 60.1% ABV.  I for one am happy to see these hover in a proof range of the low 120’s, and I’d like to see another one dip below 120.

But similarity in ABV has not meant similarity in flavors.  C921 was sweeter and less oaky (I called it “beautifully sweet with rich dessert qualities”) while A122 was more classic Elijah Craig (I said that it had a “great balance of brown sugar, caramel apple pie, and a bit of cocoa, along with a building push of rye spice, black pepper, and oak”).  Given the similarities for 2022 proofs, I thought that I’d revisit A122 and compare to B522 and C922.

Elijah Craig Barrel Proof A122 Tasting Notes

Bourbon:        Elijah Craig Barrel Proof Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey
Distillery:        Heaven Hill
Age:                12 years
ABV:              60.4% (120.8 proof)
SRP:               $59.99

Nose:
The aromas are classic Elijah Craig, known for caramel and oak, nuttiness, with vanilla and baking spice.

Taste:
Great balance of brown sugar, caramel apple pie, and a bit of cocoa, along with a building push rye spice, black pepper, and oak.  It’s not a robust blast, but instead builds with complexity.  This is all right down the middle of being on-profile for Elijah Craig, which is another way to say that it’s fantastic.

Finish:
Long, warm, consistent with the flavors and with the emergence of cinnamon to complement the caramel and oak.

Elijah Craig Barrel Proof B522 Tasting Notes

Bourbon:        Elijah Craig Barrel Proof Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey
Distillery:        Heaven Hill
Age:                12 years
ABV:              60.5% (121 proof)
SRP:               $59.99

Nose:
Woody aromas make me think of the hiking and camping season.  There’s also vanilla and cola sweetness, but it’s mostly the woodiness, black pepper, and baking spice.

Taste:
Baking spice dominates the palate that overall is extremely consistent with the aroma.  This is pure grandma’s kitchen with vanilla, allspice, clove, and cinnamon, but more like the buttered cinnamon and sugar toast. The spice is intriguing and warming.

Finish:
A long, warming finish that comes back full circle to the woodiness.  Maybe just already miss fire pits and camping, but this is exactly what B522 has me thinking about.

Elijah Craig Barrel Proof C922 Tasting Notes

Bourbon:        Elijah Craig Barrel Proof Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey
Distillery:        Heaven Hill
Age:                12 years
ABV:              62.4% (124.8 proof)
SRP:               $69.99

Nose:
Like the first batch of 2022, the aromas of C922 are classic Elijah Craig with the same oakiness, nuttiness, baking spice, caramel, and vanilla.  The proof is a bit more assertive than A122, however.

Taste:
The palate is also similar to A122, particularly with the creamy sweetness and brown sugar, but pretty quickly the spicier side asserts itself as a more robust bourbon.  The black pepper, rye spice, and baking spice take charge with great oak influence.  C922 also drinks the hottest of the three.

Finish:
Oaky, leather, drying, and long.

Bottom Line

The 2022 batches of Elijah Craig 12-Year Barrel Proof have many familial similarities and no outliers, as in some past years.  They’re all more in line with the classic Elijah Craig profile and that makes it a little more difficult to rank them against each other, but overall A122 is my pick.  Whichever one of these you find, as always they’re a strong buy.

Disclaimer: The brand managers kindly
sent me samples for this review,
without any strings attached. 
Thank you.

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