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  1. #11
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    Lot 40 is not, to be sure, pure malted rye, but it definitely has some malted rye in the mashbill. Old Potrero is indeed all malted rye, and has a distinctive flavor. Lot 40 is the only other whiskey I've had that shows the same flavor, albeit certainly not as strongly. So, from that I deduce that malted rye has a distinctive flavor of its own, distinct from the flavor that unmalted rye brings to straight rye or rye-mashbill bourbon. It sure seems to me that some chemical change in the grain as a result of malting changes the flavor of the resulting spirit.

    Regarding the barley in Irish whiskey, I have never side-by-sided Bushmill's Malt with other Irish whiskeys, although I have had it and it seemed to me pretty similar to Lowland SMSW (which tends to be lighter than other SMSW), and did not show the flavor component which I believe to be the unmalted barley. If we ever end up in the same place at the same time, that could make for an interesting tasting experiment!

  2. #12
    Bourbonian of the Year 2011
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    Indeed. I still have that bottle of Port Ellen by the way!

    Gary

  3. #13
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    I have a bottle of the Old Potrero "Single Malt Straight Rye" (90 proof), which I need to revisit. It was a bit on the pricy side - which is why I haven't had many pours from it - but I've certainly liked the pours I've had. I've likened it to a rye that took a detour through Speyside, and that's not a bad thing (even though I flat-out love the likes of Rittenhouse BIB and WT Rye).
    Oh no! You have walked into the slavering fangs of a lurking grue!

  4. #14
    Quote Originally Posted by CrispyCritter
    I have a bottle of the Old Potrero "Single Malt Straight Rye" (90 proof)...
    Herein lies a problem I have with Old Potrero and Fritz Maytag -- every issue seems to be something different. Now, that may be great for marketing to the "I-gotta-have-every-variation" crowd, but I find it irritating.
    I have the barrel-proof (125.2) "19th Century" straight rye whiskey, aged for three years. I find it (not its price, however) quite palatable. But I tried the new Hotalings Potrero at WhiskyFest Chicago and found it remarkably similar to the $18 unaged West Virginia rye, Isiaiah Morgan. The Hotalings was aged 11 years, but in uncharred barrels.
    Now here's this 'single-malt spirit'. Well, so? I have no frame of reference, even within the Old Potrero family, how it should taste. And I'm not going to shell out that kind of money on pure amusement -- not when I know what I'm getting with so many other whiskeys.
    Tim

  5. #15
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    I would pretty much agree about these tasting notes - the only exception being the alcohol scent on the nose. Then again, my bottle is something like 2 years and 10 months. Maybe almost a year of extra aging has sorted out that issue?

    What baffles me, though, is that so many seem to find similarities with Scotch. I have tried malts from about 50 different distilleries and I cannot sense any traces of kinship with Potrero. In my view, this whiskey is unique.

    Irish single malt vs Lowland Scotch? I would agree that the products from the Cooley distillery has a marked Lowland character. Not so the malts from Bushmills, who are so smooth and soft that they make even the Lowland malts seem like monsters!
    Delighted to see you if you can find me!

  6. #16
    Bourbonian of the Year 2002 and Guru
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    To find something that tastes similar to Old Potrero, you have to go to something like grappa or marc, or slivovitz.

  7. #17
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    To my knowledge, Ive never had grappa or marc.

    A friend of mine who is half-Croatian used to treat us to slivovitz during my University days. I have to say that it is very much an acquired taste. Unlike whiskey, who I took to almost immediately, I found slivovitz hard to stomach. Took me quite a while to get used to it.

    Then again, if I understand it right, almost any Eastern European country produces its own form of slivovitz so there may be huge differences in between.

    What I was coming to, in a somewhat long-winded fashion, was that I find no similarities between Potrero and Croatian slivovitz, at least.
    Delighted to see you if you can find me!

  8. #18
    Bourbonian of the Year 2002 and Guru
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    I can't say if I've had Croation slivovitz, but I have had it from a couple of different countries and it's all pretty similar. If you read what I said, I said the nearest comparison would be something like slivovitz, in that Old Potrero is very raw, sharp, harsh, vegetal, etc. Old Potrero is closer to those unaged brandy-type spirits as a group than it is to other whiskeys, as a group, in my opinion, but I wouldn't make too much of that statement. It's probably sufficient to say Old Potrero is in a class by itself.

  9. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by cowdery
    Old Potrero is very raw, sharp, harsh, vegetal, etc.
    This is my problem! I seem to be (almost) alone in regarding OP as non-raw, non-sharp and non-harsh

    Then again, I´ve only had two bottles so far, (oh, how I tried to lay my hands on a Hotaling bottling but to no avail ) one non-straight, aged in used barrels, and one straight rye. In my view both are delicious, amazingly sophisticated for their age. To these deviating taste buds, Fritz Maytag never fails to deliver!

    I actually have an unopened bottle of (Croatian) slivovitz at home. Maybe it´s time for a side-by-side comparison?
    Delighted to see you if you can find me!

  10. #20
    Bourbonian of the Year 2002 and Guru
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    In fairness, I should say that for a small company with very small output, Maytag puts out a lot of different whiskey. Most of the Old Potrero I have tasted is raw, sharp, etc., but when I particiated in the WHISKY Magazine "Best-of-the-Best" tasting, the Old Potrero we tasted (blind, so I only knew after the fact) tasted like a very flavorful, mature rye whiskey. I believe it had been aged for three years, at least according to the label, but the taste suggested it was longer.

 

 

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