Monday, August 28, 2023

High West Binny's Barrel Select Double Rye! Finished in Tawny Port Casks

- $70
- 98 Proof
- Finished 9 mos.
- Barrel No. 28124
- Utah

I feel like it's been a while since I've last seen Double Rye! private barrels on the shelves.  I've seen plenty of American Prairie single barrels, most of which were finishes that I wasn't really interested in, such as rum cask or vermouth. And, to be honest, the American Prairie Bourbon barrel selects simply haven't done a whole lot for me overall.

But, I have had some amazing Double Rye! single barrels, with all sorts of finishes from Muscat to Armagnac and even a great tequila finish.  So I knew I had to give this Tawny Port finished Double Rye! a try (and I also grabbed a Cognac finished Double Rye! at the same time).  For me, High West has always done really well with their wine finishing, so I felt pretty good that I'd be getting something delicious here. 

On the nose, the most prominent aroma was raisin. In fact, the nose kind of reminded me of oatmeal raisin cookies, but made with about three times the usual number of raisins. In fact, the raisin or even fig note almost came across as jammy.  But, there was also that baked goods or cookie-like note to go with it, and all in all, it simply smelled great!

While the nose was somewhat straightforward, the flavor was actually a bit more complex.  I definitely got rich, jammy notes, but it wasn't singularly raisins or figs. Instead I actually got heavy notes of cherry and raspberry--very consistent with my experience with anything port-finished. It wasn't overly sweet, though, which I absolutely loved, rather relying on the richness of the dark fruits.

The rye gave it a great cinnamon backbone, and there was also a distinct chocolate note that came through, probably due to the combination of the port and the rye. Interestingly, I also got a certain amount of saltiness.  Certainly nothing that made my mouth pucker, but there was a "lightly salted" tone to everything.

On the finished the baked goods notes really came out, providing not only that oatmeal or Fig Newton flavor, but also highlighting some of those baking spices.  The cherry and raspberry notes fell away just enough to allow me to appreciate everything else going on as I contemplated my next sip.

I once again found myself really enjoying Double Rye! with a wine finish. This bottle certainly reinforced what I already knew--that I'll continue grabbing these when and where I can.

Grade: B+

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