- 90 Proof
- Barrel No. 003
I love it when long-standing products suddenly get made available for a private barrel program. Over the past couple years we've seen a number of Buffalo Trace products in particular get added to their private barrel program, including Stagg Jr., E.H. Taylor, and, of course, Sazerac Rye. I tend to favor ryes, and as such, I do enjoy regular Sazerac Rye. However, it has never really been among my favorites in the category.
That said, when I learned that it was going to be part of the single barrel program, I knew I had to at least try it. So, when I made a trip to Warehouse Liquors simply to see what was in, and I saw one of these on the shelf, I was genuinely excited to finally get to try it. And the price is certainly hard to beat. I'm always a fan of purchases where the potential for buyer's remorse is basically nill.
The nose was great, with a lot of those qualities I love in rye. I got spicy graham cracker, like a cinnamon graham cracker but without the sugary sweetness. It had a light woodiness to it, kind of like wood shavings. It even had a light amount of pine. But, even on the last few pours, when I'd go to nose my glass, the predominant note was that cinnamon graham cracker.
The flavor, however, was certainly on the sweeter side. Given the nose, I was actually surprised that it leaned away from the graham cracker and cinnamon and seemed to take on more of a butterscotch note. Don't get me wrong, it was good, just a bit unexpected.
It was watery and thin in texture, which I guess was expected. But, that led to a relatively short-lived finished. What was there was a mix of cinnamon and black pepper spice, and a bit of that graham cracker note did come through on the finish. These notes were all fleeting, though, and only the black pepper note seemed to really have any staying power.
As I got down to the last few pours, I did pick up some other notes that finally added a bit of complexity, as notes of cherry started to come through, and those mixed with the spice I was getting reminded me a bit of Dr. Pepper.
All in all, for a Sazerac Rye, I thought this was an very good barrel. It was certainly better than standard Sazerac Rye, which, I guess when it comes to store picks, is all you can really hope for. I have since picked up a different Sazerac Rye store pick, and I'm looking forward to trying that one as well. For the price, it's easy to keep giving these a try!