Some blogs sink without trace – while others gather a bit of traction.
There’s little advance knowledge as to what will – or won’t – capture attention beforehand & it’s often the unexpected that gets results.
Old Grand-Dad was one of them.
Living up to it’s ‘cult’ status a fellow whiskey fan expressed interest in sample swaps.
As I’m sitting on close to 100 opened bottles that will damage my health if I drank the lot – I’m still damaging my wallet by eagerly seeking the next flavour adventure.
My cupboard is always open for exchanges so Old Grand-Dad went one way & a couple of ryes came mine.
I was very pleasantly surprised by the package!
Stork Club Straight Rye, 45%, Germany
My previous encounter with this distillery was back in 2015 when I came across their rather enticingly labelled Sloupisti Single Malt.
Sloupisti has undergone both an ownership & rebranding exercise since – resulting in the Stork Club Rye before me.
The nose exuded an earthy, almost farmhouse style of rye.
A very grounded feel to the palate. Rich & vegetal, powerful yet smooth.
A signature dry rye spice finished of proceedings – undoubtedly boosted by the 45% ABV.
Using German grown rye & partially aged in German Oak has brought out a rather unique taste of locality & place.
Balcones Rye, 50%, Texas
Balcones also briefly entered my sphere with an entertaining sample of their Single Malt Whiskey.
This Texas Rye initially offers up a more traditional nose of sweet vanilla & dark caramels.
A rich earthiness – not normally found in US rye – began to make it’s presence felt in a very attractive & enticing way.
For 50% I found Balcones Rye to be full of flavour with a rich warm spiciness on the finish wrapped up with a hint of tobacco too!
Dry yet lip smacking all at the same time.
Using Texas grown rye – along with crystal, chocolate & toasted rye in the mashbill – a melange of unexpected & highly engaging flavours were experienced.
Both these ryes are a delight.
Using mashbills & ingredients not normally encountered elsewhere the range of flavours are boosted adding a richness of depth & complexity I found very alluring.
Both push the rye category forward in new & exciting ways.