I have been slacking with my reviews lately, so I'll post what may be the shortest review I've ever written. I bought my bottle of Woodford Reserve Rye mostly for mixing classic cocktails like the Vieux Carré and the Manhattan. I did sip it neat a few times, however, just to get some tasting notes as a stand-alone sipper. From what I can find online, Woodford Reserve Rye is made from a "pre-prohibition" style mashbill of 53% rye, 14% malted barley and 33% corn "to pay homage to history’s original rye whiskeys".
- Nose: toffee, vanilla, pepper, clove, caraway
- Palate: light bodied, sweet on arrival, more toffee, a bit of banana, some black pepper, cloves and rye bread
- Finish: short to medium length, with a touch of rye spices, a bit of mint, some brown sugar and oak lingering
The rye spice is pretty subdued in this one. Its flavour is closer to a high-rye bourbon than to what I typically associate with rye. It's a little piquant, not a spicy slap in the face. It works well in a cocktail, where it doesn't dominate any of the other ingredients but doesn't get overpowered either. As a neat sipper it leaves a little to be desired. There was nothing wrong with it, per se, but I didn't crave it as a "thoughtful sipper".
- Would I accept a glass if someone offered me one? Sure.
- Would I order this in a bar or pub? Not unless it was in a cocktail
- Would I buy another bottle? Unlikely. I like my ryes bolder and spicier than this one. It would be a good start for someone who is just getting into rye.