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Willett Straight Rye 2 Year Old

Cannot wait for the 4 YO!

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@OnibubbaReview by @Onibubba

17th Sep 2014


  • Nose
  • Taste
  • Finish
  • Balance
  • Overall

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I am not overly fond of Ryes. I think in general I prefer sweetness to a dry or higher spice profile. That being said, I tried this at a bar as it was a new arrival for them, and it was an inexpensive pour. And I followed that up with several more. It was delicious!

The following day, I purchased my own bottle - I think the proof was different than the bottle at the bar, and I know it was different than the proof of a bottle advertised by a California retailer. Different batches I guess. My understanding is that this is the first bottling to be distilled and bottled by the new Willett distillery, and it promises good things ahead.

Smells like rich melted sweet butter. Also, and it took me a while to recall what this smell was, canned mandarin oranges. I used to get those in my lunch as a kid :) There is a pleasant heat in the nostrils, but what is most amazing to me is what I do not get - no white dog. I mean not a trace of it. WTF? Only 2 years old? How the hell did they do that?

Taste is not as amazing as the nose (which I absolutely love), but nothing bad. Slight burn, some dull / muted spices, a bit of baker's chocolate, and a short finish.

I tried a few ryes after this one - some High West bottles and a Knob Hill - but none of them really did it for me. I think I will just wait and see what happens in 2016 when Willitt unleashes its 4YO on us. I'm expecting GREAT things if the taste can catch up with the nose.

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hunggar commented

As a rye lover and a Willett fanboy, I'll be looking forward to 2016 as well. I've never tried anything from their new distillery, but if there's one thing this brand can do, it's choose good casks. I'm sure time will work its magic on this one. Thanks for the insight, @Onibubba.

9 years ago 0

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