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Van Winkle Family Reserve Rye 13 years old


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Bottle E1793 47.8% alcohol by volume.

Tasted straight.

Very dark rich brown with substantial mahogany overtones.

Nose is simply stunning. Incredibly rich and spicy - like WT101 increased by an order of magnitude. Clove, touch anise, substantial vanilla (like sniffing a good bean, not extract). Some sweet bread notes - slightly doughy. Lovely citric sharpness cuts through it all.

Intense citric sweetness leads the initial palate attack. Its surprisingly light on in its feet. The mid-palate is full, but not heavy, with the citrus and spice soaring over the deep vanilla bass notes. Finish just goes on and on with slowly diminishing intensity. Satiny. Wow.

Many thanks to those who reccomended this one to me after my post on the Old Grand Dad BIB.

Cheers,

Dave

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Dave,

The VWFR Rye 13 YO really is a superb tasting rye. I have not had any that is better. I love the combination of flavors and aromas. Thanks for sharing your impressions! toast.gif

Bob

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Glad you liked it Dave toast.gif VWFRR is, in my opinion, one of the best whiskies being produced anywhere. The fact that it bears a strong resemblance to bourbon makes that an even stronger statement wink.gif

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Thanks for letting us know what you thought of it Dave. toast.gif It is my favorite rye with Sazerac 18 following close behind. Like Jeff said, VWFRR is made even better by sharing such a closeness to bourbon

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Glad to see others note the VWFRR 13yo's resemblance to bourbon -- I generally alternate between it and whatever bourbon I have open (currently, coincidentally, it's the VWSR Lot B 12yo) so that I don't overtaste either one and burn it out before the bottle's gone. Since I'm a fairly light sipper, that generally takes quite a while. But, in any case, let me throw in, too, with y'all that the VW rye is a fine whiskey.

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  • 5 weeks later...

I tell ya. My taster must be off becuase I really did not get what everyone is saying there. Either I am getting a cold or I need to take a few days off and start over. I was not disappointed with my taste of this last night, but I just didn't get it, may I need to get used to rye, maybe I just need to give it a chance...Of course I'll give it a chance, it'd be rude of me not to!

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  • 9 months later...

I finally had opportunity to buy and open a bottle of the VWFRR last night (thanks again to Wadewood!). I have to say: wow.

A bright, cool mouthfeel. Minty and fruity, with a finish that echoes for many long minutes. Incredibly good.

I can't imagine a rye being better than this, but I look forward to eventually getting my hands on some Sazerac (also hard to come by in Washington State).

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BrbnBorderline

Clayton,

Also thanks to wadewood, I picked up 2 bottles yesterday. I am holding off opening it tho until I get thru a few open bottles of bourbon I need to finish. Looking forward to comparing it to WT Rye.

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BrbnBorderline

Tasted the VWFRR Rye yesterday. VERY much like a bourbon. In fact, it is so different than the WT Rye, that my first instinct was that a bourbon was accidentally bottled in the Rye bottle. Will have to explore this furhter, but for now, I like the WT Rye better for a rye whiskey. YMMV.

toast.gif

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  • 2 weeks later...
BrbnBorderline

I know I'm in the minority here, but the WT Rye does it for me more than the VWFRR. The VWFRR is enjoyable, but just comes across as confused - it can't decide if it's a bourbon or a rye whiskey when I sip it. An interesting pour, none the less.

toast.gif

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I know I'm in the minority here, but the WT Rye does it for me more than the VWFRR. The VWFRR is enjoyable, but just comes across as confused - it can't decide if it's a bourbon or a rye whiskey when I sip it. An interesting pour, none the less.

toast.gif

I agree VWFR rye has some bourbon-like elements, but do you really think it has anywhere near the body of a bourbon such that you could confuse it for a bourbon? I've never felt so.

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BrbnBorderline

That's why I say it's "confused". It is bourbonesque enough that sometimes it tastes closer to bourbon than rye, other times it tastes like........VWFRR. Hard to explain, I guess.

it's so different than WT Rye, and I am new to ryes, that I sometimes question it's rye whiskey labelling.

Who knows, maybe I'm the one that's confused........

toast.gif

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That's why I say it's "confused". It is bourbonesque enough that sometimes it tastes closer to bourbon than rye, other times it tastes like........VWFRR. Hard to explain, I guess.

it's so different than WT Rye, and I am new to ryes, that I sometimes question it's rye whiskey labelling.

Who knows, maybe I'm the one that's confused........

toast.gif

Have you tried the Saz rye? If not, you'll probably be even more confused 'cause it in turn is quite different from both WT and VWFR ryes. It does take a bit to figure them all out. WT, VWFR and Saz ryes are all always in my rotation, I like 'em all.

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  • 3 months later...
BrbnBorderline

Revisited this whiskey and I really like it. It is different than bourbon or WT Rye - almost in it's own class of whiskey. Wish I had bought more while it was available.

toast.gif

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  • 2 weeks later...
Jake_Parrott

Love this whiskey, of course. But can I put in a good word for the packaging as well? A classic armagnac bottle shape. Which means that I have the following stretch of four bottles on display at the top-right corner of my bar:

Castarede Bas-Armagnac 1939

Castarede Bas-Armagnac 1950

Castarede Bas-Armagnac XO

VWFRR

Four exquisite elixirs in nicely repetitive bottle shapes!

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Jake! Nice to see you in these parts. toast.gif We've chatted a few times over on Robin's Board.

Cheers,

Dave

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Jake_Parrott

David! Indeed we have. I guess I never got around to starting that cask beer list...grrrr. As you can tell from my sig, I suppose, I've gotten into the biz.

(and I think that's enough thread drift for now?)

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As you can tell from my sig, I suppose, I've gotten into the biz.

Congrats!

(and I think that's enough thread drift for now?)

Not quite. smile.gif I gave up trying to compile cask information when only one out of 22 breweries I contacted even bothered to respond. Then I found Alex Hall's website: http://www.cask-ale.co.uk/us/statemenu.html and realized someone had already done what we were planning.

Cheers,

Dave

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  • 5 months later...

I went to Delilah's the other night (maybe the greatest bar on the planet IMO) and intended on sampling as many different bourbons as possible (thank you CTA!). I started with Delilah's own bottling of ORVW 10 and then moved to some Old Commonwealth to see if I could detect any differences between these two 10 year old ORVWs. They were both superb and slightly different; I then moved to the VWFR Rye which really blew my mind. The nose was filled with tart sweetness and the palate impressed me with a minty pepper, cleanly refreshing taste. By the time the night was done I ordered 4 more of these because I just couldn't get enough. Each glass was so intriguing and deep. I've never had a whiskey drinking experience quite like this. I felt like I was reading an amazing book or philosophic treatise, the deeper I got the more rivetted I became to the drink. If a whiskey can be mystical, this is it. I hope the expected release this summer of this nectar is going as planned ...

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It seems you had a fine experience.... grin.gif

This is definately my all time favourite Rye.

It'd be my daily drink of choice grin.gif....if I could get my hands on some more wink.gifcrazy.gif

(the downside of living in a country so far away from anything - it makes importing very costly banghead.gif)

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