BourbonBlog.com takes you to Pembroke, Kentucky interviewing MB Roland Distillery’s founder and head distiller Paul Tomaszewski in the podcast above. These moonshines go places that few dare to go while their whiskeys impress us considering the short period of time small craft distillery has been at it.
Our reviews of MB Roland’s one of a kind moonshines and whiskeys below. Among the highlights: Black Dog Corn Whiskey which is made by “dark firing” corn in miniature tobacco barn along with the tobacco.
This is the “Laphroaig” of moonshine.
They’re also flavoring some shines with real fruit like strawberries and lemonade AND producing an Apple Pie Kentucky Shine, Kentucky Pink Lemonade, and Kentucky Mint Julep Liqueur.
MB Roland is in Pembroke, Christian County, Kentucky (near Fort Campbell, KY/Clarksville, TN). Outside of Owensboro, Paul tells us that MB Roland is the first to open a distillery in Western Kentucky since prohibition.
Barker’s Mill Distillery was in Christian County in the early 1800′s to 1890. So this region already has distilling history under its “belt,” or shall we say “Pennyrile Parkway?”
MB Roland does not add water to their aged whiskeys, so all are barrel proof. MB Roland uses local white corn that is food grade, while some distilleries use distiller’s grade corn.
Let’s get to reviewing…
MBR Bourbon Review Review
For a distillery which opened their doors about 3 years ago, this is a damn fine Bourbon. Some small distilleries have a distillate-like flavor which make some of their whiskeys taste the same without speaking volumes on flavor.
Not the case here.
MBR Bourbon enters with a caramelized, candied-like flavor, marshmallows, black cherry, roasted pecans, and nutty. A lot is going on here to be as young a whiskey as it is. Finish expresses cooperage well with true barrel Bourbon flavor the distiller seems to be going for with no water added. There is a bit of rye in here which gives a hint of spice.
It doesn’t drink like 102.6 proof, with a nice degree of smoothness it drinks more at 85-90 proof.
We recommend you try this one as a great example of a blossoming Kentucky distillery making a Bourbon outside of Bourbon Country and making it well.
Our bottle says “Batch #6,” can’t wait to see how they progress in a year or two with growth.
102.6 proof (51.3 ABV)
MBR White Dog Kentucky Corn Whiskey Review
The finish is rounded, deep with corn and gives way to a robust sweet mash. A very fine white dog indeed!
90 Proof (45% ABV)
MBR Black Dog Kentucky Corn Whiskey Review
This one will be enjoyed by the adventurous and also Scotch lovers who have a fondness for Laphroaig. The nose has a serious fighting song that allures with cooked green vegetable, earthiness and smoke. The flavor enters with a smokey Kentucky BBQ flavor and rich mouthfeel. Enjoy Kentucky tobacco even in the non-smoking section.
As with any smokey spirit, it takes a few swallows before the sweeter elements can be appreciated. In the MBR Black Dog, they are well-balanced and crafted to the tee.
Perfect as a sipper straight, cold smoke on the rocks. Would be well-paired with filet mignon or even a hearty herbed salmon with cream and other seafood dishes.
90 proof (45% ABV)
True Kentucky Shine Review
Has more of a punch than the White Dog, citrus qualities “shine” through while the corn and mash notes ar more restrained. Grain comes through as a compliment to the sugar on the finish in a pleasant way.
100 Proof (100% ABV)
MBR Apple Pie Kentucky Shine Review
It will make you ask whether you even want your sweetheart to bake another apple again pie or is it easier just to drink? Apple, baking spices, the whole package is here with backnotes of moonshine. Not to heavy on the sweetness. Approachable and easy to keep on drinking. True Kentucky Shine is the base.
45 Proof (22.5% ABV)
MBR Kentucky Mint Julep Liqueur Review
No one ever said it had to have Bourbon in it, right? “White Dog” Corn Whiskey as the base plus real spearmint leaves makes this an authentic, ready to pour Mint Julep. Tastes like it was freshly muddled.
Bourbon can always be added later on, but not necessary as it drinks well as it with some ice. Finish has some stickiness and a little burn to it.
66 Proof (33% ABV)
Kentucky Pink Lemonade Review
Made with real strawberries and lemon juice, you may never know you’re drinking alcohol. Tangy, juicy with real flavor. Citrus and strawberry ingredients are so real you’ll get your hands and your tastebuds sticky just pouring it.
A fruity libation with a zing. True Kentucky Shine is the base.
45 Proof (22.5 % ABV)
MBR X Barrel Experimental Series, Ultra Black Whiskey Review
This is an experimental made with the “Black Dog” corn whiskey and aged. We have bottle #12 of #28, so it is quite a rare bottle. A limited edition which is not limited on the taste. Three words sum this one up real quick on the flavor: Kentucky BBQ Whiskey.
Hickory pit and nice spice. Ready for a smoke? Don’t light up, just drink this one.
48.7 proof (48.7) ABV)