Saturday, June 13, 2020

Redemption 10 Year Barrel Proof Rye Whiskey

- $100
- 116.2 Proof
- 10 Years
- Batch No. 2
- Indiana

This is one of those bottles that I had been eyeing on the shelf for quite some time. Although it comes with a hefty price tag, the fact of the matter is it's barrel proof MGP rye that is 10 years old. It seems that nowadays I'm seeing even 6 year old barrel strength MGP rye going for almost as much.  The most recent release from Resilient comes to mind, sitting on the shelf with a $90 price tag. Heck, the Willett 10 year small batch rye carries all the same specs but was twice the price!

So, despite the high price, there's certainly value here, and I got some added value when I used a 15% off coupon to knock the price down just a bit more. In fact, when I got the Binny's coupon in my e-mail, I knew right away that I'd finally be pulling the trigger on this bottle.  And, as a brief aside, I love this squat bottle. It looks great and had a slight curve to it that really fits well in your hand. Almost made me want to just pull straight from the bottle.

The nose certainly gave off those well-aged, high rye notes. It was very woody and piney. It had a bit of a tannic bite to it. It also had that traditional cinnamon spice, but it carried along with it a sweetness kind of like chocolate chip cookies without the chocolate chips. It also had some brown sugar and molasses notes, which gave it a bit of a gingerbread note as well. It had a very strong aroma to it, one that was bold in spice.

On the first few pours from this bottle, the whiskey came across as very piney and with a strong cinnamon note. It really had very little sweetness to it, and came across as more of a dry whiskey, particularly on the finish. But, it still had a certain crispness to it, kind of like a pear note.

I also got some rich fruit notes that did add a slight amount of sweetness. It reminded me of Luxardo cherries, but again backed by the pine and cinnamon. The nice, oily texture of this rye allowed that cinnamon spice, as well as these dark fruit notes, to linger long after each swallow. A certain layer of vanilla stuck around as well, but that cherry and cinnamon spice just really seemed to last.

On the later pours, those strong pine notes seemed to take a back seat and it sweetened up a bit. The cinnamon was a bit more like cinnamon candy, and that chocolate chip cookie note seemed to come forward. Those black cherry notes persisted throughout, and ultimately that was my favorite part of this bottle. It was the constant that seemed to work with all the other flavors, no matter how they changed or transformed. 

This bottle still seems to be sitting on shelves in places, and given the current market, that seems a bit odd to me. But, if you've got the expendable income, I wouldn't hesitate to grab a bottle of this. You could certainly spend far more for less, and this is a really good barrel strength rye!

Grade: A-

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