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Featured Recipe: OESK

blog | 10/09/2020

5 Distillery scaled



As you likely know by now, Four Roses combines five proprietary yeast strains with two different mashbills – designated “B” and “E” – to create 10 distinct Bourbon recipes. Then, we blend these recipes together or bottle them individually to achieve a limitless number of flavor profiles. Mashbill B is the rye-heavier of the two at 60% corn and 35% rye. Mashbill E, with a blend of 75% corn and 20% rye, brings forward flavors and aromas of bright grains. Malted barley makes up the remaining 5% of both mashbills.

In our last edition, we profiled the sixth of our 10 Bourbon recipes (and the first of our five “E” mashbill Bourbons), OESV, which boasts flavors of delicate fruit and caramel. Today, we turn the camera to its cousin, OESK.

Here’s how our Master Distiller, Brent Elliott, characterizes OESK:

Made from our lower rye mashbill and spicy yeast strain, OESK creates a balanced, mellow and rich Bourbon. With less rye spice than the higher-rye B mashbill, the E mashbill allows the subtle baking spice flavors of the K yeast strain to be more apparent. 

With its elegant and mellow character, OESK is one of our most versatile recipes. Its spice blends well with the fruit, floral, or herbal tones of the other yeast strains, adding complexity and balance to the Bourbon. Because of this, we use it as one of the recipes to handcraft Four Roses Bourbon, Small Batch and Small Batch Select. 

Its delicate, spicy flavors also develop well with the influence of the oak, so many OESK batches are exceptional at older ages and are often found in our Limited Editions.

OESK is, without a doubt, one of our most prolific recipes. In addition to the Bourbons listed above, it has been part of 10 of our last 12 Limited Edition releases, including our newest release: 2020 Limited Edition Small Batch. What’s even better, Wall Street Journal-bestselling author, Bourbon curator and taster, Fred Minnick, just released his list of “Top 30 Bourbons of the Century So Far,” and it includes four Four Roses Limited Edition Small Batch Bourbons, three of which contain, you guessed it – OESK. Read more on that here.

Here is a complete list of Limited Edition Bourbons featuring OESK. The three bolded recipes are the ones that just made Fred Minnick’s list of “Top 30 Bourbons of the Century So Far:”

2008 Mariage Collection

2010 Limited Edition Small Batch

2011 Limited Edition Small Batch

2012 Limited Edition Small Batch 

2013 125th Anniversary Limited Edition Small Batch

2015 Limited Edition Small Batch

2016 Elliott’s Select Limited Edition Single Barrel 

2016 Limited Edition Small Batch

2017 Limited Edition Small Batch

2018 130th Anniversary Limited Edition Small Batch 

2019 Limited Edition Small Batch

2020 Limited Edition Small Batch 

We’ve now covered seven of our 10 distinct Bourbon recipes – only three more to go! We hope you’re enjoying learning about what makes each of our Bourbon recipes so special. Stay tuned for our next recipe feature, when we shine a light on the rich fruit and vanilla flavors of OESO.

*Note, this is not a featured recipe to purchase in the Four Roses Visitor Center gift shops.




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