Metallica’s latest whiskey — released as part of their BLACKENED label — is dropping with a commemorative box set that features a bottle of the new Batch 100, two vinyl records featuring the music that helped to age the whiskey, and a special zine featuring behind the scenes imagery of the band as well as commentary and stories about the blend’s unique aging process from Metallica drummer Laris Ulrich and Master Distiller & Blender Rob Dietrich.
Right now, two thoughts are likely swirling in your head, so we’ll answer them. Yes, Metallica does have their own entire whiskey line (and it’s pretty solid, too) and yes, we did casually mention “two vinyl records featuring that music that helped to age the whiskey.” While it’s easy to roll your eyes at the thought of a metal band-branded whiskey and dismiss it as another celebrity vanity project, considering BLACKENED is distilled using a fascinating ultrasound aging process dubbed “Black Noise Sonic Enhancement” that actually utilizes the sound of Metallica to help influence the flavor profile.
Though it sounds absurd, the whole gimmick technique is pretty legit. According to a study published in the journal of Ultrasonics Sonochemistry, spirits aged for three days using a unique ultrasound process produced spirits that were similar to brandies that had been aged for years. Ultrasound energy was found to influence both the intensity of the color as well as the total polyphenol index of the spirit treated. Pretty wild stuff.
“Being thrashed by the BLACK NOISE sonic enhancement process helps give the spirit a warm, honey amber hue,” read the official tasting notes to this expression. “Burnt caramel, oak and honey are present on the nose and moderate hints of spice upon first sip. The flavor of BLACKENED builds with notes of honey, cinnamon, allspice, clove, and mint, with unexpected hints of apricot lingering underneath. Expect a long and smooth finish with slightly creamy hints of butterscotch taffy, maple, and honey.”
The sounds that helped make BLACKENED Batch 100 were selected by BLACKENED’s in-house Master Distiller and Blender Rob Dietrich and further curated by Metallica drummer Lars Ulrich and is compiled on two 12-inch vinyl picture discs that feature deep cuts from Metallica’s massive catalog — sure to please die-hard Metallica-heads.
“When I look at Rob’s Playlist, I love the selections, I love the variety, I love that he’s gone for two deeper live tracks from the Damaged Justice tour, I love seeing both the Bing & Purge and Through The Never eras represent, and he even tapped the HelpingHands album, so it’s clear he is not a part-timer!” Ulrich said in a statement.
Metallica’s BLACKENED Batch 100 boxset is available now for a suggested retail price of $149.99. Hit up the BLACKENED website for a list of official retailers where you can pick it up.