Hotaling & Company — known for, among other things, Old Potrero whiskey and Junipero Gin — has released a new product: J.H. Cutter Whisky, which is inspired by the whiskey of the time that the distillery’s namesake, A.P. Hotaling, was alive and drinking.
J.H. Cutter Whisky (it utilizes the spirit’s spelling at the time) was, according to the company, one of the most celebrated whiskeys in late 1800s San Francisco. At the time, it cost a premium for those that wanted to get a taste — it would run about $5 per bottle (calculating for inflation, if you dropped a fiver back then, you’d be spending around $122 now).
The whiskey is a blend of 73-percent sourced bourbon from Kentucky Bourbon Distillers aged 4.5 years, 17-percent Old Potrero 18th Century Style Rye Whiskey aged a minimum of 3.25 years, and 10-percent Old Potrero Port Finish Rye Whiskey aged 4 years.
On the nose, you’ll find sweet pears and spice, followed by brown sugar and caramel. The palate is similar to a high rye bourbon: smooth caramel corn notes followed by rye spices. Wedged in the middle you’ll get stone fruit flavors.
It isn’t just the whiskey that is a throwback. The packaging features an amber glass bottle, a bottle top that is a nod to porcelain tops of the era, and a silver capsule that hearkens to a time when you’d find metal atop whiskey bottles.
If Hotaling & Co. doesn’t sound familiar, you might know them under their previous name: Anchor Distilling. When Anchor Brewing was sold to Sapporo last year, Anchor Distilling was not part of the deal. Since Sapporo owns the rights to the Anchor trademark, a name change was inevitable. Hotaling & Co. comes from A.P. Hotaling, one of the premier spirits dealers of the late 1800s. Hotaling’s legacy was cemented when his Jackson Street whiskey warehouse survived the San Francisco earthquake and fire of 1906. If you didn’t know Hotaling as Anchor, then you might know at least some of the products they import, namely Nikka whisky and Nikka’s vodka and gin, which we here at The Manual are big fans of.
J.H. Cutter Whisky is 48 percent ABV and retails for around $50.