Archive for the ‘Rye’ Category

Bower Hill Reserve Rye 43%

The bottles of this small batch rye say they are distilled and aged in Louisville, and then selected and bottled by Bower Hill Distillery in Silverton, Ohio. However, no producing distillery is named.

Tasted: Jan 2018

A youthful nose of toasted cereal and subtle herbal rye. Quite fresh but simple with late violet notes.

Young, oily and cereally with a touch of feints. Raw, spicy rye on the middle with hints of green pepper. Short and feinty with lingering cereal notes. Certainly not worth it’s £77 price tag!


Bendistillery Tasting Notes

Posted: August 25, 2017 in American Whiskies, Rye

Crater Lake Oregon Rye Whiskey 40%

95% Rye mashbill/ Tasted: Jun 2017

The nose opens with the soft, toffee’d oak and one thinks that’s it’s going to be an over oaked young rye. Yes, it’s young, but not too young and the gentle citrus and subtle spicy rye balance. With time hints of orange and dusty wood spice.

The palate is soft and gentle with lightly herbal rye to begin with, followed by a touch of toffee’d oak. Lovely orange and tangerine notes appear on the middle along with some developing spice. Lightly bitter but very spicy finish. Considering its relatively placid start I wasn’t expecting that level; of intensity on the finish.

Jim Beam Tasting Notes

Posted: June 5, 2017 in American Whiskies, Rye

Jim Beam Pre-Prohibition Style Rye 40%

Tasted: Mar 2017

The nose is soft an oaky with lots of sweet vanilla and hints of orange and lightly spiced rye. With time a touch of astringent herbal notes appear but the reality is that the rye character is buried under the mountain of oak!

Soft and watery on the palate with burnt caramel oak and very subtle, herbal rye. Hints of orange and rose petal marc-like notes on the middle but it’s really lacking any intensity. Good herbal/ spice finish with an intensity of oak bitterness at the death. Well, at least it shows some balls at the end!

Knob Creek Straight Rye 50%

Tasted: Jan 2016

The nose has the classic knob creek hardness but it is wonderfully juicy and sexy with coffee, slightly herbal rye along with hints of corn, earth, manure, sour fruit and toffee’d oak. However it’s the hard as nails rye that is the star!

The soft corn shows first on the palate along with hints of toasted toffee, which keeps the rye in hand. Hints of violet, earth and finally the hard rye spices come through. Very peppery with the corn returning on the finish but that rye spice lingers and leaves a sour, dry, softly bitter after-taste. This will definitely put hairs on your chest!

Knob Creek Straight Rye 50%

Re-Tasted: Jan 2018

Intense, citric and spicy with sweet violets and a slightly soapy, camomile note. Possibly showing a little more softening corn and oak, so making it not quite as hard and spicy as I remember.

The palate opens with toasted caramel corn and pleasantly spiced rye. Lightly oiled and quite youthful with a very tart, citric middle, Intense, violety and hard spice finish with lingering camomile and cereal.

Rag Time Rye 45.2%

Tasted: Mar 2017

The nose is young and oily with plenty of rose petal marc-like notes, chunky, herbal rye and toasted caramel. With time some high toned, almost grain spirit notes appear along with a touch of dusty spice. I’m guessing that this hasn’t spent much more than the minimum time in oak as the nose is pretty much all spirit orientated.

The palate is equally youthful and a little feinty with lightly cardboardy spice, toasted caramel and herbal rye. Straightforward with a very dry and bitter spice middle and finish. Finally a touch of sweet vanilla appears but not enough of it to balance the bitterness.

Michter’s US*1 Single Barrel Straight Rye Whiskey42.4%

Tasted: Nov 2014

Full and quite sweet on the nose with plenty of oak character – coffee, coconut and toffee coated banana. The rye comes through pretty quickly with a slightly herbal edge. A touch of corn underpins along with some sweet spice. The aromas have a feel of maturity to them and I would guess the spirit is around 7/8 years old. Lovely depth, pleasantly soft and sweet but not too sweet.

The palate is crisper and more coffee’d. A lot drier than the nose would suggest. There is less creamy oak and more tannic oak, although the corn sweetness balances. The rye, again is lightly herbal and spicy. Lovely intensity and length with some oily toffee and chocolate on the finish.

Michter’s US*1 Single Barrel Straight Rye Whiskey 42.4%

Tasted: Jan 2018

Earthy and spicy with a lovely, sweet rye character on the nose. Showing some maturity with hints of pepper and violets. Very subtly oaked, so the emphasis is firmly on the rye.

The palate displays a lovely soft, succulent and sweet rye character. There’s a little more, sweeter oak than the nose would suggest, but the earthy spices balance. Long and natural with some slightly oily corn on the finish and lingering dry, spicy tannins.


Michter’s US*1 Straight Rye 10 year old 46.6%

Tasted: Apr 2016

Nose: Intense and vibrant, black pepper coated rye with chunky coffee’d oak. Hints of balsamic, sour cherries, cinnamon sticks, ginger powder and cigar leaf. With time a sumptuous liquid orange note appears.

Palate: Very peppery and spicy, quite woody too with bitter chocolate. The unobtrusive oak balances until the dark rye arrives on a wave of mouth puckering bitterness. Intense is not the word.

Finish: Very dry, mouth-watering and a little short with lingering earthy, herbal marc-like notes.

Conclusion: Intense is an oft overused word, but not in this whiskies case! Some may find it too dry and bitter, but damn, its fun!

J E Pepper 1776 Straight Rye 50%

90% Rye Mashbill

Tasted: May 2016

The aromas are soft with a combination of sweet and herbal rye notes. Hints of corn and sweet oak appear along with hints of earth, coffee, leather, orange and sweet spice.

The palate has the softness of the nose but it the rye character is slightly more edgy with a lightly herbal character. A touch of coffee, sweet oak and corn follows but the herbal rye intensity builds and becomes a little bitter. There’s more wood spice than you can shake a stick at on the middle with hints of violets. Long with lingering corn, coffee cumin and bitter rye spice.

Wild Turkey Tasting Notes

Posted: November 4, 2015 in American Whiskies, Rye

Wild Turkey Rye 40.5%

Tasted: Sept 2015

Sour fruit with hints of fragrant, violety herbs, silky but lightly grippy vanilla oak on the nose. Some softly herbal rye begins to emerge along with a touch of sweet rye. With time it becomes very perfumed.

The palate is soft and easy going. Quite juicy with hints of sour fruit and herbal rye. Gentle spices emerge on the middle along with some creamy oak. Very moist and maybe a little too perfumed with hints of earth, liquorice, violets and coffee. Some grippy tannins come through in the finish, which try to offset the floral/ perfumed notes.

Wild Turkey Russell’s Reserve Small Batch Rye 6 year old 45%

Tasted: Jan 2018

Soft, sweet rye aromas with just a touch of spice and underlying, corn, toasted cereal and toffee’d oak. Very mellow with a developing, fragrant, barley-like note and hints of violets and honey. With time, hints of orange conserve and tobacco.

A good depth and softness to the palate with coffee-cream and subtle rye spice. The corn and toasty oak come through on the middle along with a touch of orange marmalade, apricot and honey. Gently spiced with herbal marc-like notes and toasted cereal on the finish. Given its price tag of 90 odd quid, I’m not sure it’s worth it.


Skip Rock Distillers Rye 43%

Tasted: Mar 2015

Nose: Youthful and earthy rye-like notes to begin, followed by darker rye-like notes, balsamic treacle, malt and dark chocolate. With time a curious perfumed/ smoked meat note appears. Oak adds supportive notes in the background.

Palate: Young and oily. A little on the immature side but it’s full of herbal rye-like notes, wheat and treacle. Seriously herbal on the middle with a touch of what appears to be perfumed hops.

Finish: Quite dry, which stunts the finish a little, but it has a lovely herbal, mocha after-taste.

Conclusion: A fabulous nose, but the palate doesn’t quite match it. Maybe more time in the cask might have helped.

Redemption Rye Whiskey 46%

95% Rye. Aged for 2 years in new American oak

Tasted: Aug 2014

The aromas are quite whisky-like with plenty of youthful green rye and hop-like notes. Hints of orange, creamy oak and gritty, earthy coffee’d tannins emerge. However the creamy oak really begins to assert itself and although it makes the nose quite silky it overtly blankets. 

The palate is a little on the watery side, but pleasantly soft, opening with granulated sugar coated green rye along with hints of coffee’d oak and some darker rye spices. Reasonable length with the bitter oak and herbal notes lingering. The finish is pretty austere as the oak and corn fail to add any balancing sweetness.

Copper Fox Rye 45%

75% Rye/ 25% Malted Barley – Malted with 60% Apple wood & 40% Cherry wood

Aged for 15 months with new and used Apple wood and oak chips inside used ex-bourbon barrels. Finished in used ex-bourbon barrels

Btl: 2013/ Tasted: July 2014

A pungent nose of marc-like straw and raw spirit. Hints of gritty, sweet cherry, herbal rye, coffee and apple. It’s extremely young! 

The palate is very much like the nose with an intensity of marc-like straw, very herbal rye and a rather false oak character. Extremely bitter and herbal with not much in the way of complexity. Bitter finish with a little sweet cherry smoke note coming through. In conclusion: It’s interesting. Personally I would have not used the wood chips as it has given it a very unnatural and bitter wood character. It would have been better to just give it more time in cask.