This is a NDP 25 year old rye bottled at 46% ABV.
Nose: Rich rye with some cucumber and granny smith apples. Big oak full of char and peppercorns.
Palate: Sweet on entry which fades into a massive oak bomb with rye playing a supporting role. In line with other really old ryes where it’s hard to avoid being overoaked.
Finish: Big blast of pepper followed by dry, bitter oak. Rye lingers with a bit of lavender.
Rating: 83/100 – As with most of these 20+ year ryes, it’s overoaked but has a great nose.
Value for the money: These are probably $300+ on secondary currently and I’d avoid it at that price unless you love very oak heavy ryes.
This is a 22 year NDP rye from Hirsch that was sourced from Kentucky Bourbon Distillers (Willett). This was distilled in 1983 and bottled at 46.5% ABV.
Nose: Huge kick of rye up front as expected. Very strong lavender notes along with rich buttered corn bread drizzled with honey.
Palate: Big rye with some subtle tobacco influence. Peppered oak combines with the rye for a lot of spice. Slightly bitter, but buttery at the same time.
Finish: Lavender and rye quickly fade – relatively short overall.
Rating: 90/100 – One of my favorite noses I’ve encountered in a straight rye – too bad the finish is a bit lackluster.
Value for the money: These are probably $350+ on the secondary at the moment which is an easy pass, but definitely try this one if you see it at a bar somewhere.