While I was recovering from knee surgery in August or early September my buddy Hudson from Hokus Pokus came over with three pints of cask strength rye whiskey for me to participate in a barrel pick. We sampled them and picked one, and it is now bottled. I was pretty excited about this one, given that I liked Old Pepper’s bourbon. What I was most concerned about was what would happen if they proofed down the wonderful cask strength rye whiskey I had just tried. But they didn’t proof it down and bottled it at a wonderful 110 proof. This is MGP rye bottled at Pepper’s distillery in Lexington, Kentucky. This bottle releases tomorrow at Hokus Pokus.
The color on this whiskey is a wonderful amber with some straw notes. On the nose, herbal rye and some slight caramel and vanilla. The swirl has a nice film with thick legs. On the palate, the herbal rye is backed by the wonderful vanilla, along with clove and oak. The mouthfeel on this whiskey is amazing, and shows how well made this spirit is. On the finish, the clove is met with a wonderful dark fruit note and lingers a long time.
This is a whiskey I would put against Whistlepig 10 year old and my bet is that Old Pepper comes out on top, despite being only around $40 a bottle. This is a pretty special bottling and definitely worth picking up.