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Orders are available for pick-up at Restaurant Nicholas at 160 Route 35 South Red Bank, NJ 07701 during the following times:

Monday: 9:30-3:30; Tuesday – Friday: 9:15am – 9:00pm; Saturday: 11:00am – 9:00pm; Sunday: Closed

Whistle Pig Boss Hog Edition: ‘The Samurai Scientist’


Last November, the Nicholas Wines faithful and the whiskey world alike mourned the loss of the Boss Hog himself– Master Distiller, Dave Pickerell. Those lucky enough to attend the Whistle Pig dinner a few years back got to witness the brilliance, intelligence and talent of my friend, who was fondly referred to in the Spirits world as the Johnny Appleseed of craft distilling. A loss that monumental rightfully shook the tiny Vermont Rye distillery, who in picking up the pieces now run day-to-day operations with a new mantra, WWDD? (What would Dave do?)

When we offered last year’s Boss Hog V: “Spirit of the Mauve”, it certainly felt like the last ‘Boss Hog’ bottling from the scorching-hot, cult distillery that earned ‘Best Whiskey in the World’ honors in 2017. But we were surprised if not a little bit reluctant when we saw that they released one this year sans the Boss Hog himself. That was until I tasted it.

Dave always said that the only way he would do a ‘Boss Hog’ bottling at Whistle Pig was if his “five promises” were kept. Those promises were as follows:

1. Single Barrel

2. Bottled at Barrel Proof

3. Powerfully Complex

4. Distinctly Unique from Anything They had Previously Done

5. Extraordinary Quality. Better than Anything Else They Made.

The ‘Samurai Scientist’ Edition Boss Hog is the first ever American Whiskey finished in Japanese Umeshu Barrels. The result of this fusion between the two worlds is insane- it is unlike any whiskey I have ever tasted in my life.

The name ‘Samurai Scientist’ comes from the Japanese chemist, Jōkichi Takamine who pioneered koji fermentation in the American whiskey industry over a century ago. The Rye was the result of a partnership between Whistle Pig and Kitaya Brewery on Kyushu Island in Japan. It’s bursting with aromas of nutmeg, cinnamon, tobacco and s’mores. It’s savory with oak and baking spice flavors and a wonderful, lingering finish that mixes smooth, vanilla oak flavors with a savory umami note. Bottled somewhere between 120 and 122 proof this exceptional Rye probably fits best in its own category all together. Perfect for the serious Whiskey collector ONLY and guaranteed to be unlike any other bottle that currently sits on your shelf.

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Perfect for the serious Whiskey collector ONLY and guaranteed to be unlike any other bottle that currently sits on your shelf.


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Sip slowly on its own for only the most special of occasions