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Willett Family Estate, Small Batch Rye, Straight Rye Whisky, 3 years aged in white oak barrels, 55.0% abv.

 

Willett Family Estate, Small Batch Rye, Straight Rye Whisky, 3 years aged in white oak barrels, 55.0% abv.

With the monotonically rising fame and fortune of the Willett brand from Kentucky Bourbon Distillers, it was only time until the Willett distillery started producing again. This straight rye whisky is Willetts own make, along with another rye and two other bourbons. According to their website, the small batch ryes are a combination of their two rye mash bills - a high rye mash (74% rye, 11% corn, 15% malted barley) and a low rye mash (51% rye, 34% corn, 15% malted barley) with more of the high rye mash being used. The juice was matured in 53-gallon, American oak casks charred heavily to a #4 barrel char and bottled at cask strength.

Nose: fragrant honey, like subdued applejacks (what i think of most bourbons)
Palate: not much going on, honey and wood, a slight sour-spicy wood note, smooth, more of a solid feel relative to scotch.
Finish: short, dry, a little sweet, salty? Reminds me of salty caramel.
Dry glass: light honey.

The nose was the best part, but still one dimensional, not much going on on all fronts. I'll just say the 3 year maturation was just a start and definitely could have benefited from more ageing. Definitely doesn't feel like 55% abv though. Worried about my Willett rye collection now.

 

Image courtesy of Eric Yee.

  

Eric Yee

🇭🇰 🇺🇸(LA, SF) -> 🇯🇵 (京都, 東京) -> 🇰🇷 (서울, 부산)



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