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Jefferson's Straight Rye Whiskey, like WhistlePig Straight Rye Whiskey, is Canadian-produced 100% rye mash whiskey, bottled as US Straight Rye Whiskey in the US. Castle Brands owns the Jefferson's label and has the whiskey bottled by McLain and Kyne in Louisville, Kentucky. Many think that this whiskey, like WhistlePig, is most likely distilled and barreled at Alberta Distilling, Ltd in Calgary, because that is the only distillery known to produce 100% rye mash whiskies in Canada. The reviewed bottle has been open for two days.
Nose: strong intensity maple and oak flavours, including vanilla and caramel, strong rye spices, significant alcohol greeting, and slight to moderate lemon citrus. This is generally quite a pleasant nose, except that the alcohol and the citrus is a little stronger than I would consider optimal.
Taste: sweet maple, plenty of rye spices with contrasting moderate lemon citrus. The alcohol greeting is noticeable but more in balance on the palate than in the nose. The rye and wood flavours are enjoyable enough here, but I just don't care at all for lemon citrus flavour in rye whiskey.
Finish: it is a good long finish here, with the wood and rye flavours holding up well. Because the citrus does fade out a little before the other flavours, I prefer the finish to the delivery of this whiskey.
Balance: if the citrus flavours fade away after this bottle is open 6-12 months, this whiskey will go up 5 points in my ratings. I much prefer WhistlePig Straight Rye Whiskey to Jefferson's Straight Rye Whiskey. Interestingly, the bottle has no more information on it than that given in my intro and a statement of the ABV. It takes examination of the fine print from a small label on the side of the bottle to discover that this is Canadian-distilled rye. I really do not know whether Castle Brands actively seeks to deceive the US consumer with the name Jefferson on this whiskey, but appearances would suggest that.