Tuesday, September 18, 2018

High West Double Rye! Warehouse Liquors Private Selection Rye Finished Blended Rye Whiskey

- $45
- 103.2 Proof
- Barrel No. 4218
- Finish Time: 1.4 yrs. - Rye
- Utah

Gifted whiskey is so often the best whiskey, and this one proved to be no exception. Warehouse Liquors in Chicago has been killing it with their private picks for years now. Without hesitation, I have grabbed numerous private picks off their shelves knowing that I would almost certainly enjoy what's inside, and I've never been let down. 

This bottle, which was given to me by a departing co-worker who apparently just didn't want to pack it up, carried on Warehouse Liquors' tradition of making outstanding private picks. This particular Double Rye! was finished for an additional 1.4 years in rye barrels (apparently different barrels from those in which the rye initially matured). I'm guessing the idea is to add to the richness of the typical rye flavors and spices, resulting in a bolder, more pronounced rye whiskey.

The nose is all traditional rye, full of cinnamon spice from front to back. I also got lesser, complementary notes, including a light mint note and even some pine notes. Along with the cinnamon, it reminded me a bit of Christmas. I don't know if it's all these combined, or just the particular cinnamon smells, but I got a lot of baking spices on the nose, adding to a rich and enticing aroma.

Although it didn't really come through on the nose, there was a lot of vanilla on the palate. In fact, it kind of hit me unexpectedly given that the aroma did not provide any forewarning. The cinnamon spice was in full force as well, hitting the tip of the tongue and leaving a nice, lingering spice at the back of my throat after each swallow.

The pine flavor also came through, adding a nice, earthy flavor and even a bit of woody dryness to the mix. This seemed to help keep the whiskey from seeming too sweet and helped balance it out. It even had a bit of orange peel, especially on the finish, that added just the right amount of bitterness, not going overboard. It also added a bit of a citrus note that, despite the spice and wood notes, made this seem a bit refreshing.

I think I would have liked to get more of the mint that I found on the nose, but it just wasn't there. That kind of left me wanting a bit more. Not that it's anyone's fault, it's just that I enjoyed it on the nose, and if it were noticeable on the palate I think that those mint notes would have really worked well with the bitter citrus notes to create something wonderful. 

Then again, maybe not. After all, regardless of what I may have wanted to taste, in the end this is an excellent rye, and once I started into the bottle I had a hard time turning to anything else until the very last drop was poured.

Grade: B+

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