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'Rye' would you miss any of these Rye Whiskies?

Updated: Sep 22, 2019

American Whiskey is undoubtedly in a golden era right now. Two categories that are growing the fastest are on different ends of the spectrum. High rye whiskies and wheated bourbons. The wheated bourbons are more approachable while the high rye varietals are big, bold and spicy. To be labeled as rye in our country, the mash bill must have at least 51% rye, usually mixed with malted barley, corn and grains Though many distilleries opt for closer to 100% rye to it to maximize the spice. Here are the can't miss Ryes this year's festival.

1. High West A Midwinter Nights Dram

98 Points, Wine Enthusiast. We can't believe we got this, to be honest. High West's A Midwinter Nights Dram was included in our VIP Tasting as recently as 2 years ago, and now we have it for everyone to try. You can think our Lead Sponsor High West for making that happen! This limited release whiskey is a sumptuous marriage of High West Rendezvous Rye finished in both port and French oak barrels. The rye forms a beautiful base of vanilla, caramel and cinnamon; the port barrels enhance with plums and dried fruits; the French oak provides a spice accent. The essence of late Autumn, in a glass. Incredibly hard to find in the wild. This should be #1 circled and highlighted on your must try list.

Find it at the High West table


2. Zuidam Millstone 100 Rye

This rye is a total gem! Almost everything to do with the Millstone 100 Rye Whisky, from Dutch experts Zuidam, is to do with the number 100. It's made with 100% rye grain, 100% small pot still distillation, matured for 100 months in 100% new American oak barrels and bottled at 100° Proof. Made in the Netherlands, this is as good as it gets for Rye!

Find it at the Hartley and Parker table


3. Bower Hill Reserve Rye

Bower Hill Reserve Rye is a limited edition, small batch straight rye whiskey. It has a mash bill of 51% rye and 49% malted barley, and is bottled at 86 proof. Bower Hill Reserve is a classic American rye, with lots of spice to complement vanilla, orange and apricot flavors. This is superb either on the rocks or in a cocktail.

Find it at the Bower Hill table

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4. Basil Hayden Dark Rye

Basil Hayden's newest offering begins with Kentucky Rye, providing a firm foundation of spice, oak, dried fruit and subtle molasses undertones. From there, Canadian Rye from an award-winning Alberta Distillery is skillfully layered. A touch of California Port, with its complementary notes of ripe fruit, provides the third and final layer to a whiskey just as at home on the rocks as it is in a cocktail. Full in flavor, yet delicately nuanced.

Find it at the Beam Suntory table


5. Masterson's 10 Year Rye

Masterson’s is a 100% rye whiskey that far exceeds industry standards for rye whiskey. The artisans at Masterson's incorporate only the most fragrant and plump grains of Northwest US rye and pure glacial water from the Rockies into a meticulous distillation process that utilizes an old-fashioned pot still. Aged for a minimum of 10 years in white oak. Discover an almost Frosted Flakes-like nose at first, evolving into a warm oatmeal as your nose dives deeper into the tasting glass.

Find it at the Brescome Barton table


6. Hillrock Double Cask Rye

94 Points. Wine Enthusiast

It’s rare to find a distillery that does everything on-site, from scratch. That's what Hillrock Estate This rye was crafted by Dave Pickerell, who was previously the Master Distiller as Maker's Mark and WhistlePig. This expression is a good example of taking old-style distilling and using new techniques to create a bigger, bolder rye. This Double Cask Rye sits in an oak barrel for some amount of time before it’s transferred into a second, heavily charred barrel to re-invigorate the flavors of the oak.

Find it at the Winebow table.


7. James E Pepper 1776 Sherry Rye

This limited release non-chill filtered Rye contains a 95%/5% mashbill of Rye. After aging in barrel, it is finished in Pedro Ximenez & Oloroso Sherry Casks to give it a signature sweetness and richness. James E Pepper was one of the first distilleries and producers of Whiskey in the United States can trace it's history back to the dawn of the American Revolution. This whiskey is rich in flavor with subtle complexity highlighting notes of chocolate, raisins, fruitcake, and rye spice.

Find it at the Opici Table


Taste all of these at our 7th Annual WeHa Whiskey Festival on Saturday October 5th! Do you have your tickets yet? Grab them before the sell out! Click here to purchase


All items available while supplies last. Subject to change without notice.

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