Craft Rye Whiskey Flight
Rye whiskey has become the darling of American craft distilleries and hip drinkers alike, no doubt due to the wild and characterful nature of the grain itself. Once upon a pre-prohibition time, rye was the dominant whiskey behind the bar, beloved for its big bold flavor. After prohibition, when the scene became dominated by just a few producers who were able to make it through the dark times, bourbon became the American whiskey team captain, reducing rye to just a secondary "flavoring" grain. Rye whiskey became a curiosity. Then with the cocktail boom and craft distillery boom, rye suddenly came back in a serious way, winning drinkers over with it's old school prestige and big, powerful flavor profile. With new distilleries often producing spirits in a more traditional way, using high quality grains and distilling on traditional pot stills, it makes sense for many to make rye whiskey their focus, showcasing the flavors of the grain rather than trying to hide them to make a "smooth" spirit. We've selected a few of our favorites here, showing the variety of expressions out there, all loud and proud, delightfully full charactered and spicy.
Few Straight Rye Whiskey
Made from all local Illinois grains and produced completely in house from the milling of the grain to the aging of the whiskey. Made from a mash of 70% rye, 20% corn, 10% malted barley and bottled at 46.5% abv.
Dominant rye, caramel, brown sugar, cinnamon, pepper; orchard fruit, honey, citrus, oak, baking spice, banana cream, long slow finish.
Wright & Brown Straight Rye Whiskey
Made using an heirloom varietal of rye from the distiller's family farm in Humboldt County, CA, organic and unmalted. Mash of 70% rye and 30% unmalted barley. Bottled at 45% abv.
Fresh rye bread, dill, caramel, oak; black pepper, rich maple, cardamom, slight florals, dense and chewy body, smooth finish.
Koval Single Barrel Rye Whiskey
An example of a true 100% rye whiskey (no other grain used), this single barrel bottling from Chicago's Koval Distillery sources its organic rye from a local co-op farm. Bottled at 40% abv.
Baking spice and red pepper, charred sugar, oak barrel; chocolate sauce, gingerbread, mint, cinnamon, long and light finish.