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  1. #11
    Connoisseur
    Join Date
    Sep 2003
    Location
    Louisville, Ky.
    Posts
    726

    Re: Anyone try the new Mckenzie rye whiskey?

    When I talked with Tom he said they have some normal sized barrels aging as well. His goal is to keep his prices down as much as possible while keeping the partners happy. I find his rye very good for what it is - a young rye aged in a small cask. I am encouraged that he is not try to artificially age with wood chips and such. In my opinion adding wood chips ruins the whiskey by adding a lot of bitter tannins that overpower any caramels or vanillas that the barrel may have contributed. Tom McKenzie agrees and and is doing things the slow way.

    His Glen Thunder Corn whiskey is very good as well. Between the corn and the rye, I hope he makes enough money to keep in business until his aging stocks are ready.

    Mike Veach

  2. #12
    Connoisseur
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Location
    Near York, PA
    Posts
    897

    Re: Anyone try the new Mckenzie rye whiskey?

    I have a bottle and have been in contact with the distillery about it. I was going to do a review but then got sick and put it off and then the holiday travel came up so I hope to post it up just after New Year's .
    Illuminati in training

  3. #13
    Advanced Taster
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Posts
    234

    Re: Anyone try the new Mckenzie rye whiskey?

    I sent Brian an email with a few questions about his bourbon. I don't know yet if he is willing to leak any info about it, but we shall see!

    Eric

  4. #14
    Bourbonian of the Year 2002 and Guru
    Join Date
    Sep 1999
    Location
    Chicago
    Posts
    12,616

    Re: Anyone try the new Mckenzie rye whiskey?

    I've had the rye. I like it. It's exactly what a young whiskey should be. The brief aging takes a little of the edge off the white dog character, but not too much. The thing is, don't expect it to taste like a fully aged rye. It's a different animal.

  5. #15
    Advanced Taster
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Posts
    234

    Re: Anyone try the new Mckenzie rye whiskey?

    Chuck,

    How does it compare to, say, Old Overholt? That is the youngest rye I've had, but even that is around 4 years IIRC.

    Eric

  6. #16
    Bourbonian of the Year 2002 and Guru
    Join Date
    Sep 1999
    Location
    Chicago
    Posts
    12,616

    Re: Anyone try the new Mckenzie rye whiskey?

    There is no comparison. Overholt is on the young side but it is fully aged. This stuff is basically new make, i.e., white dog, with just a little bit of wood. It's more comparable to Old Potrero or something like grappa or, for that matter, corn whiskey.

    Most people would say it tastes "strong," even though what they're tasting is not more alcohol but more flavor, the residual flavors of grains and yeast in s low proof, unaged distillate. Although those flavors can be enjoyable, they are the reason whiskey is aged in the first place.

    A certain brand likes to call itself "frontier whiskey," but McKenzie is much more like what the cowboys drank than that product is. It's a well made spirit but being largely innocent of oak gives it an inevitable vegetal sharpness.
    Last edited by cowdery; 01-08-2010 at 19:56.

  7. #17
    Virtuoso
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    Chicago-ish
    Posts
    1,124

    Re: Anyone try the new Mckenzie rye whiskey?

    Quote Originally Posted by callmeox View Post
    IMO, the pricing of these micro-distilled products will end up as their undoing.
    I agree. $40 a bottle and you're trying to keep the price down?
    Soundslik a bunch of rich guys with a hobby trying to cover their costs.
    "Brownest of the brown liquors..so tempting. What's that? You want me to drink you? But I'm in the middle of a trial!" L. Hutz

  8. #18
    Connoisseur
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Posts
    927

    Re: Anyone try the new Mckenzie rye whiskey?

    Well, let me try to post again. I am glad to see all of the comments. I am the distiller that makes Mckenzie Rye. We do things different from the rest of the micros. We do things the old fashioned way, instead of a radical new way like all of the other micros. We use local grain, we only bring malt in. We grind, mash, ferment and distill right here. We use low distillation and barrel proof. We are using small 10 gallon barrels for getting some whiskey on the market sooner, but we are putting up 53 gallon barrels too, for long term aging. The rye is 80 percent rye and 20 percent malted barley. We do have bourbon that may be out this year. It is high in rye, and it double pot distilled in a tradional pot, no plates at all. The release will be from the small barrels. As far as rich folks paying for a hobby, not the case here, that is the case with a lot of micros but not us. Brian and I are in our early 30's with families to raise, so we have to go after it. The price of the rye is a lot cheaper than other microdistilled whiskey. I have seen 375's for 40 bucks. Whiskey is not cheap to make at all. I hope everyone gets to try it, you can buy it online as well as here at the distillery. If anyone wants a tour let me know, we would be glad to oblige. If anyone has any questions, please ask me.

  9. #19
    Advanced Taster
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Posts
    234

    Re: Anyone try the new Mckenzie rye whiskey?

    Thanks for chiming in here! I think it's great to hear directly from producers and distillers about their products.

    My wife and I are planning a trip out to the finger lakes area for our anniversary this July(we live near syracuse) and I am looking forward to visiting the distillery.

    While $40 is a tad bit more than what I usually pay for a bottle of whiskey, I do not think it is ridiculous at all for someone just starting out. Hell, look at Charbay, $350 for a 750mL bottle!? That's downright insulting if you ask me. I don't care what it's made of, NOTHING is worth that much, period. I will gladly pay $40 for a bottle of rye whiskey made in my state. I like the idea of supporting local businesses.

    Eric

  10. #20
    Bourbonian of the Year 2002 and Guru
    Join Date
    Sep 1999
    Location
    Chicago
    Posts
    12,616

    Re: Anyone try the new Mckenzie rye whiskey?

    Tom McKenzie and I correspond quite a bit and I can tell you he's the real deal. He knows what he is doing and he shares the values, whiskey-wise, of most of the people on this board, in that he understands, honors and respects American whiskey-making traditions.

 

 

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