The end of the year is upon us, and I don’t know about you, but the Holiday season usually makes me want to up my alcohol intake! If you’re in a similar position, don’t fret, because Jon and I have some great new picks to help get you through!
Luke’s Pick – Blue Run High Rye Bourbon
Blue Run Spirits has quickly established itself has as a quality producer of bourbon and rye whiskey. Their sourcing, blending, and marketing prowess has been impressive from day 1, and certainly has not gone unnoticed in the industry, as they recently announced their plan to build a $51 million distillery in Georgetown, Kentucky. Blue Run has put out numerous releases since its inception in 2020, including some higher-aged bourbon, a few quality ryes, and numerous limited edition single barrel offerings. I have been impressed with all of these, but one release in particular stood out to me, not only because it is a fine sipping whiskey, but also because it comes from a Titan in the bourbon industry. Without further ado, I present my final pick for 2022: Blue Run High Rye Bourbon.
This beautiful bottle of whiskey was distilled by the one and only Jim Rutledge, the celebrated former Master Distiller for Four Roses. Jim distilled this whiskey at the Castle & Key Distillery from a mash bill comprised on 65% Corn, 30% Rye, and 5% Malted Barley, and it was then aged for an undisclosed period of time before being bottled at 111 proof (55.5% abv).
On the nose, this whiskey provides some traditional bourbon aromas, a subtle bouquet of rye spice with just a hint of a dill and some floral essence, and some citrus candies. On the palate, this whiskey is initially sweet with some toasted grain – think honey drizzled rye toast. However, the rye spice quickly takes over and provides plenty of warm spice to balance the sweetness up front. The finish is long, warm, and full of ginger and cinnamon spice with a slight touch of oak on the back end.
I am never shy to admit that I follow Jim Rutledge closely, and I will never pass up an opportunity to try his whiskey because I know his skill and experience as a master distiller is second to none. Once again, Jim has delivered! This is an exceptional sipping whiskey and one that will make the perfect gift for the whiskey lover on your list. Cheers!
Jon’s Pick – Knob Creek Single Barrel Select
This is a bourbon ‘whale’ that delivers everything a Kentucky warehouse has to offer. It’s a 9 year old, 120 proof offering from the MSL barrel team. Here, I’m tasting the ‘Summertime Sizzle’ barrel that we tasted in July. It’s the perfect holiday bourbon for your bar. It pops with cinnamon and cherry perfectly aged in a charred white oak barrel. I slowly added water to this one until it balanced out with caramel, vanilla, nutmeg, and a nice cherry finish.
Pick any or all of the three private selections. Sip neat or with water. Over ice it will take you on a flavor ride as the ice melts. The full flavor also makes it a perfect mixer.
However you take it, take it easy & enjoy the holidays!
We hope these picks treat you well throughout the holiday season. If you ever want to discuss these picks, our just whiskey in general, come find us on the porch! Otherwise, we wish you all a happy holiday season and an even happier new year!