The official title includes the exclamation point but they should have included two more because this stuff is awesome!!! High west does a great job pairing whiskies from disparate sources to make unique products, but in my opinion, all of their blending skill culminates in their rye line-up. Maybe they were lucky and found some extra delicious stocks, but then again, maybe they’re just awesome at blending. I would lean towards the later. Either way, everything about this bottle is stunning.
The whisky is a mix of 2 year old and 16 year old straight rye whiskies. The younger of the two is LDI/MGPI’s 95% rye. The more mature stocks are 53% rye from the Barton 1792 Distillery which used to get funneled into Fleischmann’s. The rest of the mashbill in the 16 year old is corn, making it sweeter and fruitier to contrast the enthusiastically youthful MGPI. It’s the best of both worlds; spicy and sweet, young and old, bold and reserved, yin and yang.
At its average retail, $35, I would buy this up before it goes the way of Black Maple Hill, being filled up with higher priced, mediocre stocks while becoming impossible to find.
Nose: Pumpernickel, mashed pencils, and black licorice ornaments on a freshly sawn Christmas tree. Polished jump boots filled with pear and rocks. Sweet desert sage and tempered mint. Light juniper sings with a citrus harmony. Melon liqueur and Cocoa Puffs. A few minutes of air finds a bowl of Beefaroni buried under toasted almonds and caramel cubes. Perfect. Goddamn perfect.
Palate: Nicely balanced. It’s the young, punchy rye and the mature, fruity rye mixed together. Crisp celery and juicy raspberry candies under a granite waterfall. Farmy hay couple with sugared lime, orange and lemon zest. Woody grape skins, melon and cooling white pepper flirt with beef. The yellow layer of a #2 pencil and mint rock the finish.
Thanks go to Katie Flanagan from High West for the bottle!