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Painkiller

Yet another opinion needed.....

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Painkiller

I've tried the "search" function on here to no avail, so once again I'm gonna throw this out there: I'm looking for a higher proof whiskey, and my local retailer has a couple of bottles of the Thomas Handy Rye, around 67.3%, available for $80. Never tried a flat-out rye, so would this be a worthwhile purchase? I will grab it tomorrow if you guys give me the thumbs up. I am quite anxious to try this beast.

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OscarV

If you are afraid of over spending you can always add 259ml of water to that bottle of Handy and you'll have 1 litre and 9ml of 100 proof rye whiskey.

Or get a bottle of Rittenhouse Rye BIB for around 22 bucks.

Me? I like Handy, it's worth it.

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Josh

I love Oscar like a brother. But I disagree. I don't think it's worth it. Buy a couple bottles of Saz Jr instead.

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OscarV
Buy a couple bottles of Saz Jr instead.

Does BT have 2 rye mashbills?

In spite of the proof Saz and Handy seem different.

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Smokewagon

I had a similar debate. I passed up a THH last night, just couldn't bring myself to pay that much for what seems to basically be uncut baby Saz. The bottle had been sitting on the shelf for 4 months or so, i figure if i change my mind in the next few weeks it will most likely still be there.

~SW

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Painkiller

Yeah Smoke, me too. It's actually been on the shelf for some time now, which seems unusual for such a well known, high priced whiskey. That's why I was a bit hesitant to buy. Maybe not a fair gauge, but if it's that easily available, still, is there maybe a reason?

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T Comp
If you are afraid of over spending you can always add 259ml of water to that bottle of Handy and you'll have 1 litre and 9ml of 100 proof rye whiskey.

Or get a bottle of Rittenhouse Rye BIB for around 22 bucks.

Me? I like Handy, it's worth it.

I love Oscar like a brother. But I disagree. I don't think it's worth it. Buy a couple bottles of Saz Jr instead.
Does BT have 2 rye mashbills?

In spite of the proof Saz and Handy seem different.

Love Handy but haven't been able to choke down an open bottle of Saz Jr in more than a year. And my little synchrony moment here tonight...had a pour of Saz Jr before reading this thread (even thought about dumping it after a few sips but then my East European genes kicked in) and then started digging through the basement boxes to open a Handy but first found and opened a Ritt BB instead.

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smokinjoe
I've tried the "search" function on here to no avail, so once again I'm gonna throw this out there: I'm looking for a higher proof whiskey, and my local retailer has a couple of bottles of the Thomas Handy Rye, around 67.3%, available for $80. Never tried a flat-out rye, so would this be a worthwhile purchase? I will grab it tomorrow if you guys give me the thumbs up. I am quite anxious to try this beast.

Sheeze, this one is not even 60 days old. Many more out there....

http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/showthread.php?18670-Thh-2012&highlight=thomas+handy

OK, the Search Function ain't perfect, but....:rolleyes:

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GaryT

$80 is a bit steep, but if I was completely out of Handy and looking for it - I'd probably pay it. For my palate, Baby Saz doesn't come anywhere close. In fact, I'd trade a Saz 18yr for a Handy - just my flavor preference. That said - if you've never had a rye whiskey before, $80 might be an expensive experiment (says the guy who bought a bottle of Pappy 20 yr without ever having it, just to find I didn't think it was all that!) Can you find any Willett Family Estate Rye in your area? I've bought a 4 yr bottle, 110 proof for $35 which I thought was an amazing rye (and less than half of the Handy). For me, that lines up closer to the flavor profile of a Handy than a Baby Saz.

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savagehenry
Can you find any Willett Family Estate Rye in your area? I've bought a 4 yr bottle, 110 proof for $35 which I thought was an amazing rye (and less than half of the Handy).

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sailor22

For me the Handy is worth every penny. It's one of the oomphiest Rye's on the shelf, and when the mood strikes nothing else will do. Doesn't have the mouthwashey mint that so much of the LDI sourced product has. YMMV but you need to try and decide for yourself.

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petrel800

Have you tried Bookers? If you're looking for higher proof its not a bad start and pretty reasonably priced. Either that or a bottle of the Willet family reserve bourbon or rye wouldn't be a bad start at higher proof without breaking the bank.

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Josh
Does BT have 2 rye mashbills?

In spite of the proof Saz and Handy seem different.

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Painkiller

Yeah petrel, funny you say Booker's. Have a nice unopened bottle at home, I think their 25th Anniversary. ?? (And I wonder when I will ever open it.) But a local shop has a 129 proofer sitting there for about $50. I keep thinkling about getting it, but Booker's just doesn't seem to impress too many on here. Even the guy selling it said he thinks it's overrated. I've gone through several bottles years ago, but it was always via shots !!, and shots only.That was fun! Always wondered what it would be like to be a "big boy" and just sip it. Maybe I'm missing out on something. Per chance it's time to revisit history, after all.

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compliance

Handy isn't worth it. It's something that everyone will eventually have to try since it's part of the BTAC, but I think you should try to find it in a bar to test it out. I like Willet ryes better, and the price on those is more attractive. If your goal is to get a high proof whiskey regardless of it being rye or bourbon grab a Four Roses Single Barrel. There are many store bottlings of it at barrel proof around $50-$60, TPS has all the recipes available or you could find a local retailer that gets their own bottling. Avoid the Bookers too, that one is easy enough to find in a bar to try and isn't that great.

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squire

Painkiller there are more practical choices out there but there is only one Handy so if you want it get it.

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petrel800
Yeah petrel, funny you say Booker's. Have a nice unopened bottle at home, I think their 25th Anniversary. ?? (And I wonder when I will ever open it.) But a local shop has a 129 proofer sitting there for about $50. I keep thinkling about getting it, but Booker's just doesn't seem to impress too many on here. Even the guy selling it said he thinks it's overrated. I've gone through several bottles years ago, but it was always via shots !!, and shots only.That was fun! Always wondered what it would be like to be a "big boy" and just sip it. Maybe I'm missing out on something. Per chance it's time to revisit history, after all.

Its hit or miss, but I've had more hits than misses, if you look around, you can find airplane bottles of bookers to try if you don't want to shell for the full bottle.

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ErichPryde

best bang for your buck with rye? Rittenhouse Bottled in Bond. That being said, Thomas Handy is amazing rye. I keep a bottle on hand to add a splash to the occasional sazerac cocktail or to drink when the mood hits- as others have said, nothing else compares. Sazerac Rye (or baby saz, or saz jr, &c) is my absolute LEAST favorite rye. I can't speak for every release of Thomas Handy, but the 2008 is my favorite. 127.5 proof. Later releases were more sazerac-like, and if you cut them with water, maybe they'd be the same. I can't say. But 08.... Man. Only thing better is the short run of Bowman Rye at barrel proof that the party source did.

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Brisko
They do have two but Handy & Baby Saz have the same one. The other one is for the Taylor rye.

A couple years ago when the price of Handy went up in the mitten I did a head to head of Baby Saz vs. Handy cut down to 90 proof. I couldn't tell the difference. That was the last bottle of Handy I bought. With the price hike it was no longer a good deal. I'm an outlier on this, but I'm perfectly fine with that. One less thing for me to hunt for and more on the shelf for those who enjoy it.

Re: the Willet ryes, yes they are also barrel proof, but they are a very different style of rye from the Saz family.

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ChainWhip

Who cares what THH is like versus baby Saz at the same proof? You can't up the proof on the baby Saz to THH level - and at barrel proof, THH is delicious.

Try the THH if you can before you buy but the baby Saz / proof argument is bunk IMO.

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ErichPryde

I agree that you can't get saz to the same proof level, but the argument isn't bunk. Josh's point is that if it tastes the same at 90 proof, there's nothing more special about THH than the proof and therefore it doesn't warrant the high price tag.

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ChainWhip

I think the proof and concentration is a major part of what makes THH what it is. I don't know of anybody who brings THH down to babySaz proof except to experiment and declare that it is the same and therefore no better. If we want THH at babySaz proof then we should just buy the Sazerac rye. Yes, it's the same mashbill/juice but to me, it's just not the same whiskey flavor profile out of the bottle.

Meanwhile, we should accept THH for what it is and if it doesn't taste good enough for us at that price point, then no big deal :-)

Edited by ChainWhip

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CoMobourbon

Stating the stupid-but-obvious here; if you are interested mostly in the higher proof and only incidentally in the rye status, then your options and price range widen substantially. For a higher proof bourbon at a lower cost, I'll give my standard plug for Old Grand Dad 114.

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Young Blacksmith

Right. There are more high proof whiskey options than just Handy at $80. Noah's Mill, OGD 114, a few scotch options, etc. Not sure what your local shops carry though. If you want to try the Handy, and feel like $80 is an OK price, then do it. But if you are just looking to try something higher than 100 proof, you have options. Heck, even OWA at 107 is decently high proof.

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OscarV
I think the proof and concentration is a major part of what makes THH what it is. I don't know of anybody who brings THH down to babySaz proof except to experiment and declare that it is the same and therefore no better. If we want THH at babySaz proof then we should just buy the Sazerac rye. Yes, it's the same mashbill/juice but to me, it's just not the same whiskey flavor profile out of the bottle.

Meanwhile, we should accept THH for what it is and if it doesn't taste good enough for us at that price point, then no big deal :-)

Aw c'mon Dude, we are bourbon geeks, it's what we do.:cool:

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