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  1. #11
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    Re: Thomas Handy Sazerac Rye

    I'm a huge fan of the Handy Rye. Like Hedmans, and unlike Leif, my experience with this rye is all positive. I thought it fit in with the rest of the BTAC very well, holding up to Stagg and WLW quite well. Unlike the rest of the BTAC clan it is younger, but given its quality more than makes up for it.

    My impressions include lilac, caramel and spice on the nose, then caramel, leather, tobacco, mint, spice (including, but not limited to cinnamon) for the palate. An enormous finish, not quite as much of a freight train as the Willet, but it's up there.

    Just describing the flavors and aromas doesn't do it justice. Straight, it is very hot, and probably the most teeth-kicking, throat-grabbing whiskey I've ever had. It has the ability to take control of your consciousness.

    Of course, that's because I was drinking it neat. I should try it at a lower proof, or even with ice, but I love that barrel-proof kick so much I never get around to it. The only time I don't drink it neat is when I cut it with baby Saz at a 50-50 split for something a little more civilized.

    If I'm not mistaken, is that just about the same thing as cutting it with water?
    • • •
    Mark

    I love him whose soul squanders itself, who wants no thanks...for he always gives away and does not want to preserve himself.
    -Nietzsche


  2. #12
    Disciple
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    Re: Thomas Handy Sazerac Rye

    Quote Originally Posted by Hedmans Brorsa View Post
    Had to laugh a bit when I read your post, Leif. Simply because I disagree with almost everything you wrote.

    I have not tried the WLW, so obviously I cannot comment on that but I find Handy to be much better than Stagg (and Sazerac 18yo). Nor did I find it to be very bourbon-like and unbelievably enough, I did not perceive it to be too young.

    I can give you the benefit of the doubt about its status compared to the Rittenhouse 10yo. Have to sample them together a bit more before I pass the final verdict.

    Well, that´s pluralism to you!
    I have to adjust my comment in this matter. I did only taste it neat when just opened and I did not find it bourbon-like in the nose or finish but defiantly in the middle part with is a bit ironic since it is very spicy and “typical” rye tasting with water.
    I do like this brand and gave it 86 in the 100 point scale to compare with 90 for Rittenhouse 10. Stagg and WLW from antic collection 2006 are far over 90 though:
    And if its not too young (too be perfect) what would you expect from this brand if it will be realised as I hope one year older for every year for many years ahead. One more year over “the edge” or what?

    Leif
    Swedish lover of American whiskey

  3. #13
    Guru
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    Nov 2006
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    Re: Thomas Handy Sazerac Rye

    Quote Originally Posted by mgilbertva View Post
    ...Just describing the flavors and aromas doesn't do it justice. Straight, it is very hot, and probably the most teeth-kicking, throat-grabbing whiskey I've ever had. It has the ability to take control of your consciousness.

    Of course, that's because I was drinking it neat. I should try it at a lower proof, or even with ice, but I love that barrel-proof kick so much I never get around to it. The only time I don't drink it neat is when I cut it with baby Saz at a 50-50 split for something a little more civilized.

    If I'm not mistaken, is that just about the same thing as cutting it with water?
    I found it easer drinking than some of the higher proof Staggs. That said, proof for proof rye, most any rye, seems a shade hotter than bourbon.

    I have thought of using Handy to kick up the proof and flavor intensity of Saz Jr. to equal that of WT Rare Breed and use it in a Manhattan. I normally use WT RB in most of my Manhattans.

  4. #14
    Advanced Taster
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    Jan 2007
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    Upper Gwynedd PA
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    211

    Re: Thomas Handy Sazerac Rye

    Quote Originally Posted by mgilbertva View Post
    Just describing the flavors and aromas doesn't do it justice. Straight, it is very hot, and probably the most teeth-kicking, throat-grabbing whiskey I've ever had. It has the ability to take control of your consciousness.
    You can say that again. I am very greedy about sharing this bottle with myself, but when I do deem myself worthy of a pour, the first taste (or two) is always neat for reasons I couldn't articulate until I read your post. Then I throw a cube in it before my head erupts in flame. Of course when winter rolls around I can see just taking the whole thing neat on a cold day. No blankets necessary THAT night.

    I really like it a lot and lament that I didn't buy the two bottles I found (instead of just the one).
    Ron

    ECONOMY, n. Purchasing the barrel of whiskey that you do not need for the price of the cow you cannot afford”
    - Ambrose Bierce

  5. #15
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    May 2005
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    Re: Thomas Handy Sazerac Rye

    I revisited this recently and tried it neat. I then tried it 50-50 with the Saz Jr. I agree that with the 50/50 it is more manageable to the pallet. The proof doesn't take your breath away or have that kick your a$$ feeling so well stated in this thread. BUT, to say that it is the same as cutting it with water doesn't do it justice. The BT house flavor is much more evident and so is the rye spicieness that we all look for.

    I may do a "Gillman" and mix the last of the bottle with something from a low rye mashbill. I will be replacing the Handy if it is included in the '07 BTAC, and when I first opened it I was not too sure.
    Emancipate yourself from mental slavery. None but ourselves can free our minds.

    Bob Marley.

  6. #16
    Connoisseur
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    Oct 1999
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    Re: Thomas Handy Sazerac Rye

    Quote Originally Posted by nor02lei View Post
    I And if its not too young (too be perfect) what would you expect from this brand if it will be realised as I hope one year older for every year for many years ahead. One more year over “the edge” or what?

    Leif
    I would be pessimistic, Leif!

    Seriously, I did not mean to imply that it was perfect. Maybe a couple of years more would make it better? I have no idea. All I know is that there is already a 18yo rye for those who prefer extra age. Keep this one young-ish for those of us who like it that way, I say.
    Delighted to see you if you can find me!

  7. #17
    Virtuoso
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    Apr 2005
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    Re: Thomas Handy Sazerac Rye

    That reminds me... I have two bottles deep in my bunker. I need to fish one out and pop it open soon - especially since I just finished a bottle of VWFRR.

    I actually have a hard time deciding which is my favorite '06 BTAC bottle - in my biased opinion, each and every one had its own merit - including the ER17 and Saz 18.

    The Stagg lasted the longest, but that was mostly because I had also opened a Fall '05 Stagg alongside it and alternated between the two.
    Oh no! You have walked into the slavering fangs of a lurking grue!

  8. #18
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    Re: Thomas Handy Sazerac Rye

    Quote Originally Posted by snakster View Post
    I am very greedy about sharing this bottle with myself, but when I do deem myself worthy of a pour, the first taste (or two) is always neat ...
    Perfect! I love the idea of being "greedy about sharing this bottle with myself." It makes no sense on its own, but that is how I feel too. I have agree it's as if I have to feel, well, worthy. Very few bourbons achieve that status for me, but this is definitely one.

    A prime candidate for the Empty Bottle Support Group if there ever was one.
    • • •
    Mark

    I love him whose soul squanders itself, who wants no thanks...for he always gives away and does not want to preserve himself.
    -Nietzsche


  9. #19
    Taster
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    Oct 2004
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    Massachusetts
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    53

    Talking Re: Thomas Handy Sazerac Rye

    I find that the Thomas Handy one of my favorite pours. In a moment of inspiration( late at night) I thought I would mix three togther. Equal parts of Thomas Handy, Saz. jr and the saz. 18 yr. rye. Quite spectacular indeed. The best of all the ryes. Fire , spice , wood it's all good.

 

 

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