Puncher’s Chance has unveiled its oldest whiskey to date with the release of Puncher’s Chance Bourbon: THE LEFT CROSS. Aged for 14 years in wood rickhouses, THE LEFT CROSS was finished in freshly dumped 12-year-old Jamaican rum casks for two to six months – an extremely rare finish for a bourbon at this maturity. The result is a balanced and nuanced spirit where the natural bourbon characteristics and the rum finishing co-exist beautifully.
Produced under the careful stewardship of Master Distiller Kevin Curtis and Master Blender Stephen Hughes of IJW Whiskey Company, just 70 barrels of Puncher’s Chance Bourbon: THE LEFT CROSS are available – making this a must have for collectors and connoisseurs. Bottled at 96 proof, The LEFT CROSS starts with a mash bill of 84 percent corn, eight percent malt and eight percent rye.
Aged in new American oak barrels, the whiskey picks up the flavors of a long-matured bourbon, including vanilla, dark fruit, and warm oak. The rum finishing enhances the sipping experience by introducing Jamaican rum’s famous and distinct “funk” – adding rich flavors of brown sugar, ripe bananas, and sweet baking spice reminiscent of Bananas Foster. The finish is long and soft with the slightest hints of rum lingering for a near eternity.
THE LEFT CROSS is the second limited-edition release from Puncher’s Chance – a new American Whiskey entry from Wolf Spirit, out of Eugene, Oregon. It comes on the heels of its first-ever limited time offering called The D12TANCE (January 2022) – a 12-year-old bourbon finished in California Cabernet Sauvignon barrels.
The brand name of Puncher’s Chance itself is a boxing reference, denoting that almost anyone is possible of a knockout punch, no matter the odds. Earlier this year, Puncher’s Chance inked a deal with the Professional Fighter’s League to bring its whiskey to the growing MMA community – while also proudly partnering with MMA legend Bruce Buffer and ESPN/New England Sports Network veteran Charlie Moore.
The name The LEFT CROSS is a reference to Jamaican heavyweight fighter Donovan “Razor” Ruddock, a southpaw who, with a devastating left cross punch, battled the likes of Mike Tyson and Lennox Lewis. The left cross finishing blow became Ruddock’s much-admired calling card.
“Like its predecessor THE D12TANCE, our journey with THE LEFT CROSS is about taking an older whiskey and experimenting with unique finishing techniques – in this case dark Jamaican Rum casks,” said Umberto Luchini, founder of Wolf Spirit. “Our objective was to use the rum finishing to coax out more of the existing characteristics from the whiskey while adding a unique hint of sweetness. It’s a special craft to finish such a mature bourbon, but the masters at IJW Distillery have done an exceptional job finding the right balance.”
With an SRP of $150 for a 750ml, only 2,000 bottles of Puncher’s Chance Bourbon: THE LEFT CROSS are available