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  1. #1
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    When Good Saz Goes Bad?

    Had a strange experience with a bottle of Saz Jr. I've enjoyed this whiskey in the past and was enjoying the bottle I opened about four weeks ago. But last week, when I used it in a cocktail, I found the drink had a musty taste that was not at all to my liking. At first I put it down to the interaction of the various elements in the mix, but tonight I had a pour of the rye straight. Sure enough, that musty, earthy taste again. Not pleasant and, more important, something I had not noticed in the flavor before. To my palate, rye tends to carry more "leather" notes than bourbon, but this was something I hadn't encountered before. It was so pronounced that I ended up dumping the remainder of the glass.

    Has anyone had a similar experience? And don't get me wrong, I'm a big fan of the Saz whiskeys. Can't wait to get my lips on some Handy.

    Just wondering, as I sip some WT 12 to right all wrongs.

    -Mike
    "This is the real article. It is double-rectified busthead from Madison County, aged in the keg. A little spoonful would do you a power of good."

    -True Grit by Charles Portis

  2. #2
    Bourbonian of the Year 2002 and Guru
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    Sounds like cork taint.

  3. #3
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    Chuck,

    Doesn't the sudden onset of the vile taste argue against that?

    I was going to cite a couple of your old posts ( one and two ), but the sudden onset would remain a mystery in any case.

    Yours truly,
    Dave Morefield
    Yours truly,
    Dave Morefield

    Dog Lover, Euphonium Player, Campfire Guitarist, Marksman,

  4. #4
    Bourbonian of the Year 2009 and Virtuoso
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    I can't explain the sudden presence of the musty and earthy tastes, but that is what I find in many ryes in general. Not completely unpleasant, just not my normal cup of tea. Hence, I don't drink many straight ryes. In fact, many enjoy the earthiness of ryes.

    Randy

  5. #5
    Bourbonian of the Year 2002 and Guru
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    There are two kinds of cork taint with whiskey. One is where the whiskey acts on an essentially okay cork over time. The other is where the cork is seriously faulty. Then the damage can happen right away.

    Mike, how does the cork look? For it to be cork taint this fast, you should be able to see visible deterioration in the cork.

    Dave, I haven't had the Saz Jr., but Mike said he did have experience with it and this bottle was different. That's why I didn't attribute it to his just not liking some of the normal characteristics of some ryes.
    Last edited by cowdery; 10-30-2006 at 21:42.

  6. #6
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    I went back and checked the cork and while it's not terribly degraded, it does have a large crack running around about a third of the circumference at the bottom. I kind of doubt that's the problem, but the only other explanation is that half way through this bottle, my taste changed. Always possible, but I'm going to pick another bottle up this weekend, sample it, and see

    -Mike.
    "This is the real article. It is double-rectified busthead from Madison County, aged in the keg. A little spoonful would do you a power of good."

    -True Grit by Charles Portis

  7. #7
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    Chuck,

    I was aware only of the "stored on its side" taint (which I discovered the hard way).

    I should have realized that if wine can go bad due to contact with some corks but not others, then there must be potential for another sort of problem.

    BTW, Brent at Binny's says he has a batch of the Saz Jr. arriving soon.

    Yours truly,
    Dave Morefield
    Yours truly,
    Dave Morefield

    Dog Lover, Euphonium Player, Campfire Guitarist, Marksman,

  8. #8
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    Mike, I hope you discover that bad taste was some ripple in the cosmic fabric of time that caused this one bottle to go off. You and I have talked enough that you know my love for this Saz "Jr." Rye. I have been without any for a couple of months now and am seriously looking forward to Thanksgiving when I order some from Binny's chosen single barrels of this as well as some regular issue as well as some of the Handy Rye, all to take to Oregon for what I am sure will be a time of thanks to remember...
    C

    "everybody defamates from miles away
    but face to face
    they haven't got a thing to say"

  9. #9
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    Mike,

    I think ONE of the key tasting features of the Saz Jr is the deep earthy notes. I wonder if the bottle got a little breath of air between tastings and this note was more discernable to you after the whiskey opened up.

    I Just got back from KY, while there, I purchased a bottle of the Thomas Handy and sampled it...YUM!, this is another one of BT's great whiskies. It too has the earth notes that the JR has but to a lesser extent. This time, the earthy note is more understated,refined and elegant, but still there. I like that particular note in the JR, it is what sets it apart from the pack, and although most rye features this to a certain extent, the JR is in a class of it's own here.

    Good Job BT...

    Keep mixin' Mike...(or give the bottle to Gillman, he'll figure out something to do with it!) LOL!

    dp

  10. #10
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    That actually sounds likely, Doug. I'm going to try out another bottle and get to the bottom of it, so to speak.

    BTW, how does the Handy compare to your older barrel proof rye?

    -Mike
    "This is the real article. It is double-rectified busthead from Madison County, aged in the keg. A little spoonful would do you a power of good."

    -True Grit by Charles Portis

 

 

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