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cowdery

VWFRR -- All Gone?

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jvanwinkle

Timothy:

Which store was that in Louisville? I'll go by & straighten them out.

As I sad previously, starting in July-August of each year, we will have 290 cases to sell in the US each year. About 30 of those cases will be in Kentucky-Louisville area.

Julian

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barturtle

Thanks Julian. That's just what I wanted to hear(though I would like to hear larger numbers, as would many I'd bet).

Though I may have misheard(and just what I'd deserve for letting myself hear others' conversations) I wanted to make sure that I wouldn't be deprived of your wonderful rye.

PM sent

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cas

I haven't been able to get it for about the last year in SC either. Can you rattle some cages there?

Craig

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ProofPositive

Earlier this evening, along with my first bottle of Pappy 15yo bourbon, I snagged my first VWFRR for the home inventory. While I have never tried rye, I am looking forward to the experience. wink.gif

I do not recall seeing VWFRR in any other store around here until this one today. They have 1 more bottle in stock and I may go back for it next week if my tasting experience is as good as I expect it to be. Just about anything in the VW family is hard to find around my stomping grounds. If you find a VW product, always best to grab it before someone else does. cool.gif

BTW, I see a lot of reference to the alpha letter found on the VWFRR such as an "E" or "F" bottle. Mine is marked "G3259". What does that mean exactly in terms of barrel origination or date, and, when it was dumped for bottling? confused.gif

usflag.gif

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BourbonJoe

"G" denotes 2005 Release.

Joe usflag.gif

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ProofPositive

Not to beat a deadhorse.gif with this question....but, is the "G" bottling the older S-W whiskey or the newer BT? I know that is a frequent question here on the Forum and I have yet to be able to master the answer. Right now, the only factor I know to use is the year 1992 when S-W shut down operations. If my math is reasonably good, VW whiskies that are currently 13-year (possibly) or younger were born under the BT masthead(?)confused.gif.

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barturtle

IIRC Julian has never revealed the source of the rye. But he has stated that they tanked the rye at about 19yo and the F and G bottlings are both from this tanked stock or at least from the same lot of barrels and the rest was tanked after the F was bottled(something like that anyway). At any rate the rye is not from the same stock as the other products that are bottles as VW. The current issue 10yo is Bernhiem-distilled and the 12yo should soon be also(or may be now). Then as that stock moves through to the older products the BT-distilled stock will come into the younger and work its way throught the product line. Julian says he has many years of the rye tanked, so then when thats used up that shall also move inot BT-distilled stock.

Sound right, Julian?

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jvanwinkle

Yep-that sounds correct. S/W never distilled any rye for me or anybody. The present rye in the F & G bottles is a marriage of two different rye distillations. We hope to continue bottling the presently tanked rye for another 11 years, unless it starts going south in the tank.

We hope to start bottling BT rye in about 11 years.

Julian

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Gillman

Now that's interesting since I felt (and if one searches in the archives here the comment will be found) that starting with F the rye tasted somewhat different from the E and earlier bottlings, and not just as a result of being "older". It's all very good, but F really did seem to strike out on a path of its own. I'd ask which two ryes are in there but I don't think Julian will say since he never (I believe) confirmed the origin of the rye in the E and earlier bottlings. Rumor here had it that it was Medley whiskey but we never knew for sure! smile.gif

Gary

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ProofPositive

While out on a late evening adventure after work tonight looking for some hard-to-find bourbon, I came across a little bit of a treasure. Well, at least to me because I have not seen one before. It is a "B" bottling of VWFRR. Now, counting backwards would this be the version for year 2000?

Anyhow, not too bad a find for a bourbon hunter stumbling around in dark corners of an old liquor shop. smirk.gif

usflag.gif Wayne

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TNbourbon

...not too bad a find for a bourbon hunter stumbling around in dark corners of an old liquor shop. smirk.gif...

You think that until you taste it yum.gif -- then you'll find you've become a rye-hunter, too. banghead.gif

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ProofPositive

...not too bad a find for a bourbon hunter stumbling around in dark corners of an old liquor shop. smirk.gif...

You think that until you taste it yum.gif -- then you'll find you've become a rye-hunter, too. banghead.gif

Unfortunately for my bank account and the continued evaporation of my wife's patience, you are most likely going to be found correct in your statement. That will open up a whole new dimension in my newfound obsession!

usflag.gif Wayne

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Virus_Of_Life

I have now started searching every "Fine Wine & Spirits" and "Gourmet Liquor" store I come across here in SoCal (specifically Orange County) and good grief there is an absolute load of them! But I do always get amused when I walk into one of these places and the owner/manager replies that his premium bourbons are Glenlivet, Remy Martin or JD Single Barrel. I just must say again I love all of you on this site for who you are and what you provide to my life: knowledge, without you I'd go crazy when I find people who don't know that Bourbon is a whiskey and not all whiskeys are bourbons… Anyway I am not too hopeful in this corner of the country that I’ll actually find any VW Family Reserve Rye, but that doesn’t mean I will not look. If anyone knows that it was or was not distributed in this area I’d appreciate the info!

I seem to be fighting a losing battle where every corner market is a Fine or Gourmet liquor store...

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kbuzbee

...not too bad a find for a bourbon hunter stumbling around in dark corners of an old liquor shop. smirk.gif...

You think that until you taste it yum.gif -- then you'll find you've become a rye-hunter, too. banghead.gif

Unfortunately for my bank account and the continued evaporation of my wife's patience, you are most likely going to be found correct in your statement. That will open up a whole new dimension in my newfound obsession!

usflag.gif Wayne

And as your taste for Rye develops, make room on the shelf for a bottle of WT Rye. It's a very nice pour and my most common diversion from KS. At $18 a bottle it won't hurt you as badly as some others.

Ken

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scratchline

I'll second that WT Rye sentiment. This was the bottle that introduced me to rye and even with all the others out there now, I still have the highest regard for the WT. I recently mixed a Manhattan with the WT and Carpano Punt e Mes, and I think it was the best ever. Later, I tried the same thing with EC 12, and it was vastly inferior, way too sweet.

The only other rye that's come close for me was the Van Winkle 12 and that may be because the nostalgia factor has elevated it. Would love to come across a new old bottle and find out.

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T47

According to our State Liquor web site, only 1 store in the State had it, and its on the wrong side of the State for me frown.gif I called just to see if they really had any, and it’s all gone, part of a special order.

Today I am going to pick up a bottle of WT Rye, its kind of difficult to get for me as well? Only a couple stores in reasonable distance have it? What is Old Potrero Rye like? Relatively high priced at $101.95, is that one to look at some day in the future?

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chasking

Old Potrero is not really a rye like other ryes.

Most whiskey bottled as "straight rye" is made from a mashbill of about 51% rye, a bit of malted barley, and the rest corn. (Old Overholt is a little higher in the rye percentage, IIRC.) There are variations between products depending on the distiller and the age, but they are generally recognizable as generally the same product.

Old Potrero, on the other hand, is made from a mashbill of 100% malted rye. Malting substantially changes the character of a grain (for whiskey-making purposes, anyway) so Old Potrero is really a completely different category of whiskey.

It's certainly worth trying. However, just because you like WT rye or Rittenhouse or VWFRR or Sazerac does not mean that you will also like Old Potrero. (Nor, of course, does it mean that you won't.) Given it's high price, if at all possible you should try to get some in a bar or something before dropping that much for a whole bottle.

Opinions differ on whether it's good, or whether it's worth the price. Personally I like it, and while I'm not sure it's $100 whiskey, since it is really a unique style I'm willing to pay a premium to have some in the collection.

Clever.gif I will mention tangentally that under the labeling regulations (27 CFR 5.22(B)(1)(i)) I don't think they should be able to call Old Potrero "straight rye" since the regs specifically list "rye malt whiskey" as a separate category, which is clearly what Old Potrero is. I think technically it should be labeled "straight rye malt whiskey", which would have the added benefit of informing consumers that it is different from regular straight rye. The feds seem to apply those regs a little loosely; see, e.g., "Tennessee whiskey". (That topic has been extensively discussed in this thread.)

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Jake_Parrott

There is also a surfeit of Old Potrero labels out there. The most recent, Old Potrero "Straight Rye" Whiskey--sometimes labeled is no cheaper than the others, but is bottled at 90 proof, so the "bang for the buck" isn't there anymore. There are a bunch of different cask-strength bottlings of Potrero through the years--"18th Century Style" (two years or so in uncharred wood), "19th Century Style" (three years in charred wood, was replaced by the regular straight rye), "Single Malt Spirit" (California only), which is the same as..."Single Malt Whiskey" (two to two-and-a-half years in uncharred wood). It's very confusing, and I'm wondering if Anchor intended the 90 proof bottling to be the same price as the cask strength ones, or if distributors and such (1) got confused or (2) saw a way to make a few extra simoleons.

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Rughi

Most whiskey bottled as "straight rye" is made from a mashbill of about 51% rye, a bit of malted barley, and the rest corn. (Old Overholt is a little higher in the rye percentage, IIRC.)

This is what I remembered, too, but when I looked up mashbills recently in Regan & Regan, it seems they were led to believe that 65% is more the standard.

Regan & Regan list both Heaven Hill and Wild Turkey as having 65% rye, 23% corn and 12% barley malt.

IIRC the George Washington recipe was about 65% rye, 30% corn and 5% malted barley. I'm not sure if some of the rye was malted, as 5% would be a pretty low number for malt.

Of course, whiskey writers never seem to report the same "facts", to the point that one wonders if they are speculating or if distillers make sport of supplying them with disinformation. Murray writes that WT would have about 55% rye, HH about 52%, Beam 51%, and Overholt at 61%.

These numbers would be more in line with VW rye, which I believe Julian once wrote here on sb.com that it was at a "barely legal" level above 51%.

So which writers is one to believe? Chuck, of course, but I can't recall without some research if he's ever weighed in on this rye mashbill thing.

Roger

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T47

Thanks for the information. I just stopped by the liquor store to pick up the bottles of Buffalo Trace, and what did I find on the shelf…they have 8 bottles of Van Winkle Family Reserve Rye! Its not listed on the State site that they had it, so it was a nice surprise. I picked up a couple (33.35 each). I am looking forward to giving it a try.

If you other WA folks are interested it’s the store at 1302 6th Ave, in Seattle.

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CrispyCritter

I picked up one today, and it was about $60. It was the 90 proof version, labeled "Single Malt Straight Rye Whiskey."

It isn't open yet... I need to finish some other bottles first.

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Jake_Parrott

That's about what the cask-strength stuff used to cost (the price got lowered, at least in the DC market, about two years ago--I even got some on closeout for much cheaper than that). Still, $60 for 90-proof, two-year-old (or three) whiskey seems pretty dear to me, even if it reflects a bunch of tradition.

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