Score: 92 points
There are actually two versions of the 2017 Birthday Bourbon: one at 48% ABV, and a second, smaller batch that was bottled at 47.7% ABV due to a drop in alcohol levels during bottling. These tasting notes are for the 48% ABV version, since the lower-proof version was only available in Kentucky, Georgia, and Florida.
The nose is aromatic and well-balanced with black pepper, orange peel, caramel, charred oak, dark chocolate, and a hint of roasted almonds. The taste has notes of black peppercorns, caramel ice cream topping, a hint of orange peel, dark chocolate, and charred oak. The finish is long with a lingering peppery spiciness and touches of dried flowers and chocolate fudge. Very nice! (September, 2017)