This rye smells like it was aged in an elm canoe that had been going down Class Six rapids for a year straight. But rather than try to fit all of that on the label, the distillers claim that it was aged in Caribbean rum barrels instead. We’d try to make more of a case for our elm canoe theory, but nosing this rye is like trying to tell what the bartender has just served you when your drink is on fire. After letting some of the alcohol evaporate off, we got hints of bubble gum–actually, a burst bubble that you’ll need peanut butter and some divine intervention to get out of your hair. There are also notes of mown grass and molasses (not to be confused with moan grass and mole asses), but they’re not the herbaceous notes so typical of most rye whiskies. But it’s also desserty, and those flavors carry over to the mouth. On the palate, it’s feels like a pecan pie shooter served on a polished wood harpsichord with inlaid cherubs. In other words, it’s sweet and lyrical in a way that aspires to the seraphic. The finish is not chasing a thunderstorm in Wisconsin while sitting in an Adirondack chair made from cedar that’s been pressure-treated with Caribbean cocktails (little umbrellas and all). The alternate ending (this is a Choose-Your-Own-Tasting-Note) is waking to find oneself in a hyperbaric chamber that’s been pumped full of cotton candy and the dying breath of saints.
–On the scale of heavenly references that didn’t make it into this post–
The Angel’s Envy Rye is the one that likened some of the sweet notes to angels’ flatulence–It was a really good one, too, albeit decidedly off the beaten humor path. But you can’t fight the censors, or so the lawyers say…
–Our thanks to Wes Henderson and Angel’s Envy for the sample!