Get Crafty Because Rye Is Great Young
The good news for Americas young craft distilleries is that rye whiskey can generally reach a pretty high quality in a short amount of time. Rye is a versatile ingredient and shows well young, says Taylor. A lot of flavors come out of younger rye, and rye as a grain has these characteristics that shine through a little bit different from the corn in bourbon.
Thats part of the reason why so many craft distilleries are turning to rye whiskey. Not only is it popular and with less ingrained brand loyalty than bourbon, but theyre able to make serious headway in a short amount of time.
Taylor is a big advocate for aforementioned brands including Smooth Ambler and Rittenhouse. As far as young craft rye recommendations go, he has another pick. Willett three-year-old is delightful, says Taylor. Theres such a Bardstown feel to it, and its a cask strength. Its really, really delightful.
Understand That There Are Different Styles Of Rye Whiskey
Knowing that there is a wide range of different styles of rye whiskey is essential to being able to understand the broad range and spectrum of flavors. There are two main styles of rye whiskey: Monongahela and Maryland. Today most of the production is occurring in the south but this is not where the process originated.
A Background On The History Of Whiskey
Whiskeys origin lies somewhere between 1,000 and 1,200 AD when traveling monks migrating across Europe, introduced the distillation practice into Scottland and Ireland. Because of the lack of vineyards in these countries, the monasteries turned to fermenting grain mashes and then distilling them into whiskey.
For the next 400 years, whiskey spread throughout the Celtic countries, being referenced by kings and warriors in historical texts. In 1536, King Henry VIII dissolved the monasteries who had been distilling the majority of whiskey up until that point. This made monks independent and required them to now make a living for themselves. They saw distilling as a way to make that living. In 1608, the first officially licensed whiskey distillery Old Bushmills Distillery was founded in Northern Ireland.
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Base Ingredients & Materials
Is Rye Whiskey Gluten
All whiskey, including rye, is generally regarded as gluten-free. While they may derive from grain that contains significant quantities of gluten, the distillation process usually removes all traces of the protein.
In most cases, people with gluten intolerance shouldnt experience any ill effects. That being said, it is occasionally, albeit rarely, reported that people with more severe conditions like Celiacs disease have had some complaints. These are usually mild but it isnt unheard of.
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The Best Rye Whiskey Cocktails
Sipping straight spirits on the regular may not be everyones plate of poutine but Beehan insists theres a serve for all.
Yielded in a Whiskey Sour or Whiskey Smash, the additional sugar and citrus of those drinks help tame ryes rougher edges. The Whiskey Smash is such a beautiful drink, he says. If you muddle the lemon, you get the oils and the juice. Add some mint in there: Its fresh, its lively, and a really nice way to start appreciating rye.
But Beehan remains a cocktail classicist at heart, and for his loonie, theres nothing as magical as a Manhattan. Theres the historical connection to start, with the golden age of cocktails coinciding with an earlier boom in rye production, he says. Then theres the Manhattans adaptability as a template.
Sub out the sweet vermouth and split the support between Averna and Punt e Mes and youre soon shaking hands with a Longshoreman opt instead for a full ounce of Averna and you have the darker, brooding Black Manhattan using dry instead of sweet vermouth, along with Maraschino liqueur and Amer Picon, transports you across the East River to the Brooklyn cocktail.
Finally this being a Canadian-led exploration we cannot forget the combination of rye, Fernet-Branca, simple syrup, and Angostura, better known as the Toronto.
All of are essentially stirred, three- or four-ingredient cocktails, and they really highlight the base spirit, Beehan says.
How Rye Is Made
For a spirit to call itself American rye whiskey, it has to conform to a strict set of legal regulations. First, the mash has to be made up of at least 51 percent actual rye grain. The bill’s remaining 49 percent usually winds up being a blend of corn, wheat or malted barley.
Second rule: Certified rye whiskey’s initial booze content can’t be any higher than 160 proof . After all that sweet, sweet liquor has been extracted from the fermented wort, it gets diluted down to no more than 125 proof, or 62.5 percent ABV. Then the liquid gets piped into charred , new oak barrels and left untouched to age.
For straight rye whiskey, you’re looking at a minimum of two years maturation time, though many distilleries choose to let it sit around a little longer for a richer, more complex product. It’s also important to note that straight rye cannot be blended with any other spirits during this process. Pure is pure.
Ohand up in rye-loving Canada, none of these rules apply, including spelling .
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What’s The Difference Between An Old
There are similar elements to these drinks, as both contain bitters and a citrus twist, but the base spirit is different.
- The old-fashioned’s base is bourbon, whereas the Sazerac’s base is rye whiskey.
- The old-fashioned typically uses Angostura bitters, but the Sazerac favors Peychaud’s.
- The old-fashioned’s garnish is typically orange the Sazerac tends toward lemon.
Testing The Abv Of Your Rye Whiskey
After the aging process, you should test the ABV of your rye whiskey and dilute if necessary. You can use a hydrometer to do this. You can dilute the whiskey with purified water prior to bottling it if the ABV is too high. Rye Whiskey must have a minimum of 40% ABV to be classified as a rye whiskey.
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Should You Add Water To Rye Whiskey
Those who are true whiskey connoisseurs will tell you that adding a drop or two of water to your drink actually makes it taste better.Various expressions have been used to describe the phenomenon, which indicates that there is some kind of opening effect to the whiskey that is caused by a drop or two of water.
Look At The Producers
There are two different styles of rye whiskey producers, those who distill and those who do not. Since distilling the original way, there are a lot of additional profiles and hints that you get with a truly distilled version.
Finding a great rye whiskey really is not that difficult and with these tips, you should have success in no time.
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Favorite Bottles Of Rye
If you have now decided that you would like to start drinking rye whiskey and you have no idea where to begin, there are a few bottles that we can be sure that youâd be happy with.
Old Overholt Straight Rye Whiskey is one of the most popular bottles of rye whiskey on the market today. Some argue that it is one of the best. One surprising fact about this rye is that it is not going to set you back much and you can easily find it for under $20 per bottle. Old Overholt Straight Rye Whiskey features the forward scent of spices and a nice afternote of vanilla. There is a slight pepperiness and the notes of delicious tender orchard fruits.
Templeton Rye âThe Good Stuffâ Rye Whiskey has a unique history. It has been distilled in Templeton, Iowa since the days of Prohibition. In fact, when it was distilled during these years, it was known as âThe Good Stuffâ which is where the name originates from. One of the things that is unique about Templeton Rye âThe Good Stuffâ Rye Whiskey is that it has a 95% rye mash bill. There is a grassiness and a spicy flavor that rolls through the whiskey as you take a drink. It is balanced with a fruity flavor and a fudginess.
Rittenhouse Bottled In Bond Rye
Rittenhouse Rye is produced at the Heaven Hill distillery. Heaven Hill is a very large, privately owned distillery which has flown pretty much under the radar here in Australia. They are the 7th largest supplier of Alcohol in the US and have the second largest inventory of Bourbon . Some of the brands you may be familiar with that they own other than Rittenhouse include Elijah Craig, Evan Williams, Henry McKenna, Larceny, Old Fitzgerald and the Parkers Heritage Collection.
Price: RRP $95
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Will Rock And Rye Cure A Cold
Like many distilled spirits, particularly herbal liqueurs, rock and rye was used as a medicinal tonic. It was a regular fixture in pharmacies around the 1870s but reclassified as a distilled spirit in 1883. Around the turn of the 20th century, some makers once again added claims that it would cure colds, congestion, and all sorts of illnesses. Marketing it as a remedy was often a way to get around the higher taxes associated with recreational alcohol and the growing temperance movement. However, there is no cure for the common cold, and it is unlikely that drinking rock and rye is a remedy for any ailment.
Do You Drink Rye Neat
Rye lovers enjoy it neat or on the rocks, just like any other good whiskey. Some classic rye cocktails include the Vieux Carré, the Sazerac, and the Manhattan. Plus, any cocktail you ordinarily make with bourbon can also be made with rye, which will make the drink a little less sweet and a little more spicy.
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Whats The Best Whiskey To Drink Neat
Bourbon is a good starter whiskey if youre just getting into drinking it neat. The high proportion of corn used to make it gives it a sweeter flavor that calms some of the alcohol burn. If you like a bit of spice, rye whiskey could be a good place to start its drier than bourbon but the spiced character of the rye also helps tone down the alcohol character when drinking it neat.
How To Drink Rye Whiskey According To A Canadian Bartender
Say what you like about the bourbon boom of recent decades, for drinkers and mixologists alike the rye renaissance has been equally exciting. Indeed, the styles revival owes a large debt to the bartending community, which embraced the spicy, herbaceous whiskey to shine a light once more on forgotten classics like the Sazerac, Old Pal, and Vieux Carré.
That renewed interest has seen major U.S. distillers revive heritage brands and others launch new products in the space. Take a stroll down liquor aisles nowadays, and youll encounter more rye labels almost all of them green than at any point in living memory. And drinkers, seemingly, cant get enough of them. Since 2009, volume sales of rye whiskey in the United States have grown a staggering 1706 percent, reaching 1.6 million 9-liter cases by the end of 2021, according to the Distilled Spirits Council.
A short hop north of the border, Canadian bartender Shane Beehan is well placed to lend advice on how to explore rye and get the most out of a bottle of Redemption, Rittenhouse, or trusty Old Overholt. Beehan has worked in hospitality for 15 years 10 of them behind the bar and now wears multiple hats including consultant, brand ambassador, and beverage director of Nova Scotias Salvador Restaurant group. He also happens to live in a country where rye is used as a synonym for whiskey in general.
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How Much Does It Cost
Compared to other liquors, rye whiskey is mid-priced. Quality and pricing varies. You can buy a mid-priced 750 ml bottle for $25 to $35. But the high end can go up to $700 plus.
What are some good brands of rye whiskey? We recommend Bulleit, Woodford Reserve, Knob Creek, and High West. Crown Royal is Canadian Rye Whisky.
Rye Vs Bourbon: The Main Differences Between
If you are not familiar with whiskey, then you might feel a little intimidated or overwhelmed when looking to try something new. For those of us who have been drinking whiskey for years, it is something that we tend to take pretty seriously.
One thing that you have to keep in mind is that it depends on the person drinking the whiskey and where they are from when they are deciding if whiskey is good or not. Many people around the world prefer rye while many in the United States prefer bourbon. Since these are the two most popular types of whiskey, we wanted to share with you our thoughts and some information to help you determine the best choices for yourself and possibly your next event.
There are a few subtle differences between rye whiskey and bourbon and once you are able to find these, you will be able to really create the perfect craft cocktail that will impress even the most seasoned connoisseur.
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Collecting Your Rye Whiskey Distillate
Collecting your rye whiskey distillate is the best part of this entire process. This is where the magic happens! A mixture of accurate calculations and good instincts, this step takes an experienced distiller to get this process down perfectly. That being said, dont let this deter you if youre new to distilling whiskey. After you run a few batches with your whiskey still, youll be able to dial the process in by taking notes and making the necessary adjustments. As the old adage goes, Practice makes perfect.
Congratulations, youre well on your way to making your own rye whiskey! As youre producing the distillate in this step, be sure to use a glass container. Never use plastic containers for this step because they may lace your product with BPA.
Should You Get Whiskey On The Rocks
Ordering a whiskey on the rocks may sound cool, but it may not necessarily be what you want. Ice actually numbs your palate and dulls the flavors, Tardie laments. But hey, sometimes you just want a cold glass of whiskey I say go for it.
As for the type of ice, youre best off going with a large ice cube or ice ball. Small cubes or chunks of ice will melt faster than larger pieces, diluting your whiskey more quickly. If you want the chilling effect without the dilution, you might consider adding chilled whiskey stones.
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Manhattan Cocktails For A Crowd
If you like spirituous drinks, but you want something a little softer than an Old Fashioned, a classic Manhattan will do the trick. Rye’s spice is amplified with Angostura bitters, and high-quality sweet vermouth adds juicy berry notes. Note: If your bottle of vermouth is more than a month old, toss it and start fresh.
Why Do Rye Whiskeys Almost Always Have Green Labels An Investigation
Whiskey writer Clay Risen was having a discussion with his publisher about the look of his upcoming book, a study of rye whiskey, due this fall. His previous volume about American whiskey had had a black cover. A subsequent book on Scotch had a blue cover. What shade should the rye book be?
When I was talking with the book designer, there wasnt much discussion, says Risen. The book cover was going to be green.
Risen and his publisher were only following the lead of nearly every rye producer who has launched a bottle during the great rye whiskey revival of the past decade or so. Stroll down the rye aisle at any liquor store in America and youll be seeing green. The labels of Bulleit, Woodford Reserve, George Dickel, Jack Daniels, Michters, Knob Creek, Crown Royal, Elijah Craig, Hudson Whiskey, Ezra Brooks, Wild Turkey, WhistlePig Farmstock, Basil Hayden are all either full-on green or have a signifying touch of green somewhere in their design. Even old rye brands, like Jim Beam, which used to have a yellow label, have gone green. And the trend has crossed the ocean. When Johnnie Walker recently came out with its High Rye blended Scotch, the company took green as its color.
Its become sort of associated with it, says Noah Rothbaum, a spirits writer, whiskey expert, and the co-editor of the recent Oxford Companion to Spirits and Cocktails. Rothbaum notes that there is little to no historical precedent for this modern phenomenon.
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