Review: Ghost Coast Bottled-In-Bond Straight Bourbon Whiskey – 5th Anniversary Edition

DSR – GA – 001: Ghost Coast Bottled-In-Bond Straight Bourbon Whiskey – 5th Anniversary Edition

Company/Distillery: Ghost Coast Distillery, LLC

Location: Savannah, Georgia

Mash Bill: Rye Mash Bill fermented with a traditional American whiskey yeast.

Age Statement: Bottled-In-Bond, Minimum of 4 years; Website indicates 56 months.

Proof/ABV: 100 Proof/50% ABV

Color & Viscosity: From the bottle, this bourbon offers up a dark mahogany hue. From the glass, this Ghost Coast bourbon presents a soft auburn color. Legs appear rapidly as the glass is tilted to the side and the residual whiskey left behind is quick to glide down the tasting vessel. The viscous line remaining is of medium thickness. 

Purchase Price: Approximately $55 from the distillery

Bottle Label Information:

Front Label

“Ghost Coast Distillery”

“Straight Bourbon Whiskey”

“Bottled In Bond”

“Distilled and bottled by Ghost Coast Distillery, LLC, Savannah, GA”

“100 Proof | Distilled From Grains | DSP-GA-20017”

Right Side Label

“For Recipes, Ideas, and Spirit Guidance Visit

Left Side Label

“5 Anniversary Edition | GC”

“Ken Klehm – Distiller’s Mark”

Distillery Background

Ghost Coast Distillery, LLC

Tucked away in the historic town of Savannah, Georgia, just a short walk from the Savannah River, lies Ghost Coast Distillery. Founded in 2017, Ghost Coast Distillery is the creation of friends and co-founders Rob Ingersoll and Chris Sywassink. They also hold the title of Savannah’s first legal distillery since prohibition. Mr. Ingersoll and Mr. Sywassink, who first met at Appalachian State University in Boone, North Carolina, developed the business plan for Ghost Coast Distillery over a 36 month period that included taking in depth distilling courses at Moonshine University of Louisville, Kentucky. The name Ghost Coast Distillery is a nod to the history of Savannah, a city that dates back to 1733 and is known for its historic coastal roots and paranormal activity. 

Ghost Coast Distillery is located in a 17,000 sq. ft. facility on Indian Street in the historic district of Savannah. The distillery includes a large tasting room and retail space along with the operations center of the distillery. Head Distiller, Ken Klehm, and his assistant distiller Zoe Emerson, distill spirits using a 500-gallon Vendome hybrid copper pot still designed by Vendome Copper & Brass Works Incorporated of Louisville, Kentucky. The distillery also houses an approximate 900 barrel rickhouse that is without temperature control, allowing the natural temperature fluctuations of Savannah to directly influence the aging of their products. 

In addition to the Ghost Coast 5-Year Anniversary Bottled-In-Bond Bourbon Whiskey of this review, the distillery also produces Master Straight Bourbon Whiskey, Peach, Ginger, and Honey Flavored Whiskies, Vodka and Orange Flavored Vodka, Tiki Spiced Rum, Burl Gin, Daisy Maze Grain Spirit, and several liqueurs. For more information, be sure to check out the Ghost Coast Distillery website.

Tasting Notes

Tasting Date/Vessel: July 30, 2022 – Neat in Glencairn Glass; Then with a few added drops of distilled water.


Christian: In the bottle, Ghost Coast Bottled-In-Bond Straight Bourbon Whiskey opens with a nice rich cigar tobacco aroma. This is accompanied, unexpectedly so, by a light sweet wine essence. There are loads of tobacco and sweet fermented fruit influencing the nose from the bottle. In my glass, I pick up subtle hints of freshly baked pie crust, cinnamon, crumble, and dehydrated fruit. A gentle swirl unleashes a tinge of tobacco joined by some baking spice. This nose transitions nicely with lots of complexity; every time I return the glass to my nose I get something different. One last pass allows tobacco and red wine to permeate from the glass. The addition of a few drops of distilled water adds a caramel syrup sweetness to the nose that was not present prior.

Mike: As I nose this whiskey from the bottle, it hits heavy with cigar tobacco and hints of a Spanish cedar lined humidor, very aromatic and enticing. As the cigar and cedar aromas fade, an essence of dark berries, or perhaps cherries, emerge. From the tasting vessel, the nose presents crisp and dry. Soft hints of dried apple slices develop with a gentle swirl then mingle together with a touch of white pepper zest and baking spices. As I let the glass settle then re-approach, fresh cured tobacco with a suggestion of brandy fills the air.


Christian: The mouthfeel on this offering from Ghost Coast has a nice body and viscosity that gently coats the tongue. Wow, this pour hits on the tip of your tongue with the sweetness of red grapes and wine. The sweetness quickly gives way to more traditional flavors of leather and cigar tobacco. A second sip allows additional notes of fresh oatmeal with cinnamon and caramel drizzle to seep into the experience. Lots of flavor here, but overall it seems to have a rye influence, with a slight hit of black pepper and possible clove sneaking into every taste. Distilled water allows this pour to really take on the tannin of the oak barrel. So many of the complexities experienced as intended by the distiller at 100 proof, fade away with this addition of water.

Mike: This Ghost Coast Anniversary Bourbon is sweet upfront and smacks with a punch of cinnamon and old leather mid-palate. A Second pass reveals an agreeable sweet honeyed apple quality that closes with a touch of leather and surmounting saccharinity.


Christian: This Ghost Coast Bottled-In-Bond Straight Bourbon Whiskey has a nice medium finish that adequately allows the 100 proof to show without being overly abrasive. A nice ember forms deep in my chest and sits for a short period of time before going away. In the finish, I am picking up a nice stone fruit (more apricot than peach) jam flavor that is very cobbler-esque. This nicely complements the baking spices brought on by the rye grain used in distillation. Long after the whiskey is enjoyed, a honey sweetness lingers on the palate alongside a note of oak char bringing this pour to a happy ending. The distilled water subdues a finish that was quite pleasant as it was, straight from the bottle.

Mike: There is a mild finish for this 100-proof bourbon out of Savannah, Georgia. New oak, a touch of tobacco leaf, and baking spices linger as a gentle cinder persists in the chest. There is a nice minty tingle left behind in the mouth. 

Our Rating

Final Thoughts

Christian: This is a very nice sipping whiskey that is fitting for Ghost Coast’s 5th Anniversary Celebration. There is a generous amount of complexity here that provides an exceptional nose, leading to a flavor profile that follows suit. The base of this pour is traditional in nature, but I absolutely love the unexpected sweet fermented fruit notes that come through in both the nose and the finish. What Ghost Coast Distillery has been able to accomplish in this Anniversary Edition is a complete drinking experience offering a complementary nose, taste profile, and finish. For me, this whiskey was at its best being left alone at 100 proof just as the Master Distiller intended it. The pour was just so more complex and flavorful without adding any distilled water to it. What a solid introduction to the folks at Ghost Coast Distillery! If you find yourself in Georgia, specifically in Savannah, give these folks a visit and try some of their offerings. I know this specific Bottled-In-Bond was a special release, but if it is in line with their standard daily offerings, Ghost Coast may have something special brewing, rather distilling, here!

Rating: 3.55 Rickhouses

Mike: There are tons of good things about this Ghost Coast 5th Anniversary Bottled-In-Bond Straight Bourbon. This whiskey really opens up nicely as it breathes. It is somewhat simplistic overall, but traditional in flavor and very well done. My only regret is that I didn’t buy more than 1 bottle. This will satisfy the bourbon connoisseur and is more than approachable for beginners. If you’re in the Savannah, GA area stop in and say “hi” to the folks at Ghost Coast Distillery. You won’t be disappointed!

Rating: 3.63 Rickhouses


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