Doctor's Notes

Fall 2022: The Inaugural Release

Sep 16, 2022

After more than a year of planning, we finally went live with our first releases at noon on September 9, 2022. The feeling is hard to describe. I was excited, anxious, exhausted, invigorated, proud, and terrified - simultaneously. The thought that kept me grounded, however, was knowing that we had selected excellent spirits from outstanding people. We honestly couldn’t have chosen better barrels or partners for the launch of Two Souls Spirits. So that’s what this blog is about - the liquid and people that made our first release possible.

4-Year Bourbon from Watershed Distillery - Columbus, Ohio

I’ve been a huge fan of Watershed since they were literally a 2-man, 1 still (a very small one) operation. First off, just amazing people. Seriously, you will not find a more welcoming, supportive group of folks anywhere. They also make amazing spirits, including a bourbon that played a huge role in getting me hooked on craft spirits. Needless to say, they were at the top of my list for potential collaborators when we decided to start Two Souls. 

We were able to set up an initial meeting with Watershed in October of 2021. Our business model was a bit undercooked at the time, but we were passionate about what we were doing and were convinced we could make it work. We must have convinced them as well, because they invited us back in March of 2022 to officially select and purchase our first two barrels of bourbon, one of which was barrel #18-0130, our first Two Souls bourbon release

We tried 4 barrels of Watershed bourbon that day, and 18-0130 was my clear favorite. It was bright, vibrant, rich and bold, but also more delicate than the other barrels. Right away, the nose hit me with waves of dried apricots, orange blossoms, and heavy doses of brown sugar and baking spices. It was stunning. And somewhat “off-profile” for Watershed in terms of the lighter, fruit-forward profile. The most impressive part, however, was that at just over 4-years old it was absolutely ready to bottle. So we did - on August 12th 2022. If you are a fan of Watershed, or just craft spirits in general, you will love this barrel. 

TASTING NOTES: Lively and complex with layers of dried apricots, orange blossoms, spices, and caramelized brown sugar.

8-Year HAZMAT Rye Whiskey from Yahara Bay Distillers - Madison, Wisconsin

Yahara Bay is the hidden gem of our collaborators. You’re not alone if you haven’t heard of them, but I promise this 8-year rye will put them squarely on your radar. It is a one-of-a-kind barrel that we feel amazingly lucky to have found and released under the Two Souls label

The story behind this barrel is really about good luck. We met with Yahara Bay in January 2022 to discuss having them bottle and label all Two Souls releases. I tried most of their spirits during a visit in 2014, but had not had a chance to sample any of their more recent releases. We didn’t try any barrels that day, but we sampled enough of their products to know there were some fantastic barrels tucked away in that rickhouse. So we asked them to send us samples of barrels that were available, hoping we would stumble across something special. To say we did is an understatement. 

Yahara Bay sent us the first group of single barrel samples in February 2022. Included were samples of american whiskey, apple brandy, and rye. While all were impressive, the rye was a straight up game changer. In particular, barrels 44 and 45 were easily some of the best craft rye I had ever tried. They were also both nearly 8-years old and over the mythical 140 proof mark, making them hazmat barrels. The unofficial tasting notes you see on the back of the barrel (Holy. @#&$!) were taken straight from my tasting book. They were that good. We couldn’t choose between the two, so we said screw it and purchased both. Barrel 45 was released along with the Watershed bourbon in our inaugural release and barrel 44 is tucked away for a future release (don’t miss this one - we have something special in the works!). These barrels are absolute  must-haves for rye fans. 

TASTING NOTES: Lively and complex with layers of dried apricots, orange blossoms, spices, and caramelized brown sugar.

We hope you enjoy both of these whiskeys and continue to follow us as we curate more unique and exciting barrels from the best craft distilleries in the US. Cheers!


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