Drink Review: WhistlePig 10 Year Old Rye Whiskey

November 21, 2020
2 mins read

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A hard-to-find, award-winning 100% rye whisk(e)y created by Maker’s Mark’s former master distiller, Dave Pickerell. Distilled and initially aged in Canada, before years of further ageing at WhistlePig farm in Vermont, this is, as owner Raj Bhakta puts it, ‘a Canadian-US collaboration to the core’.

WhistlePig 10 Year Old Rye Whiskey Review:

That means, in addition to the rye grain selected from the climate-controlled Granville Island Distillery in Vancouver, British Columbia, this is also a blend of US whiskey, Canadian rye whiskey, and grain whiskey, blended to the perfection that the latter co-producer – WhistlePig Farm – is known for.

Aged for 10 years (rumour is that Dave Pickerell likes to express his distilling creativity by changing his proportion orders from season to season, but 10 is a conservative estimate), this is a rare and cosy gem, an almost “ma la” experience, a generous number of hints and foreshadowings, all bathed in a deep Earthy hue of amber, yet also somewhat velvety and smooth from nose to palate.

A world of complexity and relief, with the forest fruits and the toasted grains being beautifully balanced with leather, toasted walnut, tobacco, vanilla, cocoa, orange peel, coffee, toffee, and a peaty note that gives this rye a mature edge, yet somehow also makes it approachable in the most modern, mature and sophisticated way.

Whiskey Pig Review:

The finish is long, and spicy, with the odour of whisky often mixing with a pinch of faint ammonia or sea breeze, while the notes continue to evolve and re-appear in the post-conversational mode of the mid-palate.

If you haven’t tried WhistlePig 10, I would highly recommend you make it happen. It provides a whisky experience of majestic depth and complexity, as well as inclusivity, all the while more than satisfying its requirements to be smooth and easily drinkable, with a fruitiness that is neither too light nor too deep, and with a serious consistency and without fizziness.

In short, this is a whisky that illustrates the difference between rye and non-rye whiskies, and demonstrates some of the finest work of Dave Pickerell, one of the Godfather of rye whiskeys. Well done, WhistlePig.

The WhistlePig 10 Year Old Rye Whiskey 90/100 Rating WhistlePig 10 year old rye whiskey remains relatively unknown when compared to its competitors, but I think this is not the best whisky that I have reviewed by By The Glass in the last few months, although I must admit that I think all of WhistlinPig’s whiskeys deserve to be much better known. This is not something that makes me disappointed, though.

Whiskey Pig Review:

This is whisky that does not (yet?) affect me with waves of pronounced and at the same time gentle alcoholic heat or the need to create vivacious and wacky writing and photos. Spiced with minimalist aesthetics, yet full of depth and complexity.

One of those whiskies that is neither too low-proof (that would be the case of 10 to 13 years old) nor too top-proof (that would be the case of an old whisky, in other words a good whisky), this shows a shape of balanced fruitiness that will never make you feel hector-of-gods.

Whiskey Pig Review:

Well built, full of liquid presence, and although the structural strength does not reach to the earthy overtones and even hints at some woody undertone, it does not lose its shape and consistency, even during the early and mid-palate, therefore not losing its ability to surprise you.

Whiskey Pig Review:

You can taste that the 10 year old rye whiskey is a great and a unique one, but at the same time, it does not try to separate itself from its fellow-spirits: one can agree with Raj Bhakta that this is a “Canadian-US collaboration to the core”, that is a unique whisky, but at the same time so is the rye-based spirit of Pikesville.

So if you feel like exploring more about rye, and let’s not forget the etymology of the word, try a bottle of WhistlePig 10 Year Old Rye Whiskey. You will definitely not regret it.

This has a magnificent pedigree and can be called an exceptional quality and a must-have. As with all WhistlePig’s products, it comes with a delightful tasting note.

Whiskey Pig Review:

This Canadian rye whisky from WhistlePig has a really great nose (as all WhistlinPig’s whiskies do), with an aroma that waxes in and of itself, but also at the same time, very different and special.

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