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View Full Version : Definition of Rye - Just bought some Sazerac



Schock
11-19-2005, 07:49
I just purchased a bottle of Sazerac 18yr Rye, Fall 2005 Bottling. This stuff is rich, flavorful, smooth - wow it's good. Although, it is quite expensive. I had never seen it before in the stores and I have been wanting to try it. After 20 minutes of pacing around the liquor store, I bought the last of a small allotment that the owner had. Now, I've been drinking bourbon for years and I know the basics - 51%> corn, charred white oak barrels, 4 plus years if not otherwise stated, etc.,etc. I really have no idea what Rye is. Can some one tell me (a) what the rules are for a whiskey to be a rye and (b) what are the specifics of how Sazerac is made? As much as I like this stuff, I might have to start buying rye (my wife already thinks I have way too much bourbon - so this is bad news for her).

Thanks,
Jimmy

musher
11-19-2005, 08:11
Actually, its a minimum of two years for straight whiskey, but they are required to state the age on the bottle if it is under four years.

The "rules" for rye are similar to bourbon, except that it is a minimum of 51% rye, with the balance of the grains being corn and malted barley. The rest is the same, including the use of new charred white oak barrels and a minimum of two years of aging.

JeffRenner
11-19-2005, 16:30
The "rules" for rye are similar to bourbon, except that it is a minimum of 51% rye, with the balance of the grains being corn and malted barley. The rest is the same, including the use of new charred white oak barrels and a minimum of two years of aging.



Well, just to be a little picky, there is no specification for what the balance of the grains must be, although in all cases that I know of other than 100% rye malt Old Potrero, that is what the other grains are.

Same goes for bourbon - the regulations (http://www.atf.treas.gov/regulations/27cfr5.html) are silent on what other grains may be used.

And another niggle - the regs only specify that new, charred oak barrels must be used - the type of oak is not specified. However, red/black oak leaks, so only white oak is appropriate. There is another thread (http://www.straightbourbon.comhttp://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/showthreaded.php/Cat/0/Number/50761/an/0/page/0#50761) on the subject of wood.

Jeff

Ken Weber
11-19-2005, 16:50
White oak is very good and very abundant in the U.S., however, French Oak makes for some spectacular bourbon (of course these barrels cost about 3 times as much as white oak).

Ken

NorCalBoozer
11-19-2005, 17:44
I tried the fall Saz 05 last night and all I can say is.....

<bold><font size=15 color=green>AWESOME!</font></bold>

once again BT sets the bar.

NorCalBoozer
11-19-2005, 17:49
Ken, who has, or is, using French Oak to make bourbon?




White oak is very good and very abundant in the U.S., however, French Oak makes for some spectacular bourbon (of course these barrels cost about 3 times as much as white oak).

Ken

Ken Weber
11-19-2005, 17:53
Other than some experimental barrels we put away several years ago, I don't know of anyone using French Oak to make bourbon.

Ken

AVB
11-20-2005, 07:14
Is RYE by LAW required to be in new charred oak barrels? I always thought that only applied to bourbon.

barturtle
11-20-2005, 08:54
Yes, the law says:

5.22 b (1)(i): "Bourbon whisky", "rye whisky", "wheat whisky", "malt whisky" or "rye malt whisky" is whisky produced at not exceeding 160 proof from a femented mash of not less than 51 percent corn, rye, wheat, malted barley, or malted rye grain, respectively, and stored at not more than 125 proof in charred new oak containers; and also includes mixtures of such whiskies of the same type.

Vange
11-21-2005, 08:46
Will this experimental french oak bourbon ever get to market? http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/smile.gif

Ken Weber
11-22-2005, 07:07
We are currently working on it, details at 11:00!
Ken

Vange
11-22-2005, 08:14
Suspense! Keep us posted. I am very eager to find out.