I am a really, really big fan of ryed bourbons and rye whiskeys. Thomas Handy and VWFRR are some of my favorite pours.
I had almost forgotten how much I loved Thomas Handy, as I haven't had a bottle open for 6 months or so. I cracked a 2008, and my god. It's as gritty and intense as a well done horror film, and a I love it.
My mother-in-law is coming to visit this saturday, and she lives near a place that has a bunch of BTACs- specifically the (for whatever reason) unloved Thomas Handy. I bought a good number of bottles there before I moved, but I couldn't clean them out!
Last time I was there, they had 2 bottles of the 2008 left, and 3 bottles of the 2009. Judging from the movement (I was the only buyer- they started with 2 cases of handy in 2008 and I bought the four bottles that DID sell), they probably have approximately the same inventory.
I've never tried the 2009. If I were to call my mother-in-law and ask her to grab me an extra bottle, should I try the 2009, or stick with the 2008? The 2008 ranks in my favorite whiskeys of forever- The nose is armageddon (and there's something in there that reminds me of abunadh, actually), and there's something in the taste that reminds me of early spring nights with a cheap sci-fi book in my arms (Warhammer 40k, unfortunately. but damn did one of those space wolves novels come flying back to me when I cracked this bottle! Plus, the Cain: Hero of the Imperium novels are absolutely hysterical and completely worth reading).
From you guys that have tried both 08 and 09- stick with the 8, or try the 9? Also, all of you guys who LIKE rye, and have tried 09- what say you? I like my Handy as much as I like my Stagg... but I'd have more trouble living without a bottle of Handy, I think.