George Washington’s Whiskey Festival
Join Mount Vernon for its new George Washington Whiskey Festival! Enjoy some of the finest spirits from Virginia craft distillers and other famous whiskey producers. Meet celebrated distillers and learn more about George Washington’s whiskey operations at Mount Vernon. General admission tickets are still available. November 9, 2019 — 6:00pm - 9:00pm. Many of the best Virginia Ryes will be available for tasting including; George Washington’s, Catoctin Creek, Cooper Fox, KO Distilling and Reservoir.
Variety is the Spice of Whiskey
A great article of the influences the grain has on the end product.
From Growler Magazine by John Garland
Whiskey aficionados know which grains they like in their spirit. They can distinguish between the sweet softness of corn, the mellow creaminess of wheat, and the sharp grassiness of rye.
But do they know which kind of corn or rye they like best? Probably not. But this might be the direction that craft whiskey is headed.
Drinkers already understand varietal flavors. In the wine world, there’s one species of grape, Vitis vinifera, and its many varieties, from jammy merlot to steely chardonnay, are renowned for their distinctions. Michael Swanson, distiller at Far North Spirits in Hallock, Minnesota, wondered, does the same hold true for whiskeys made from different varieties of the same grain?
“Our hypothesis was that there would be a difference between the varieties [of rye] in flavor, based on how differently they act in the field,” he explains. “We were prepared for the null hypothesis to be true, that there would be no difference in flavor, and that would be a result in and of itself. What we found is that’s not true at all. There are a lot of differences.”
Read the whole story here: https://growlermag.com/variety-is-the-spice-of-whiskey/
photo by Tj Turner
We had a great experience at McCormack's Big Whiskey Grill in Richmond this past Saturday. Mac, the owner, knows his stuff, and the food was excellent. They also carry of a great selection of Virginia Ryes including: Catoctin Creek, Cooper Fox, KO Bare Knuckle, Filibuster and Reservoir.
Craft distilleries welcome visitors for tastings, tours
by Larry Bleiberg, Special to USA TODAY
With more than 1,500 distilleries around the nation, it’s easier than ever to find a local drink. Fueled by the farm-to-table food movement, craft makers are touting their grain-to-glass spirits. READ MORE
BARE KNUCKLE SINGLE BARREL CASK STRENGTH STRAIGHT RYE WHISKEY
92 Excellent Rating
TASTING NOTE: Light, heather honey and fresh golden apples play true to the golden amber color of this rye whisky. With water, black pepper, clove spice, and fresh tobacco intermingle, showing a very well made and integrated whisky that has come into its own in just under 3 years.
See The Review Here
London, Oct. 11, 2019 — According to a new market research report titled, “American Whiskey Market by Type (Bourbon, Tennessee, Rye Whiskey), Geography (U.S., Canada, Mexico, U.K., Germany, France, Spain, Russia, Poland, Italy, Austria, Switzerland, Australia, Japan, China, India, Brazil, Argentina, Chile) – Forecast to 2025”, published by Meticulous Research®, the American whiskey market is expected to grow at a CAGR of 9.9% from 2019 to reach $16.8 billion by 2025.
Based on type, bourbon whiskey is estimated to command the largest share of the overall American whiskey market in 2019. The largest share of bourbon whiskey is primarily due to huge demand from international adult consumers and more exploration of the U.S. spirits, majorly driven by their fascination with American whiskey’s heritage, as well as its mixability and versatility with cocktails. However, Rye Whiskey is expected to grow at the fastest compound annual growth rate during the forecast period.
Ramoneda Bros. Oak Stave Mill
We took a tour of the Ramoneda Brothers Stave Mill today in Culpeper, VA. Nice operation manufacturing and air drying American White Oak staves for the whiskey and wine cooperage industry. Over 100 years in the business.
WhiskyJason interviews James Hunter Carpenter who is the proprietor and Head Distiller from the Reservoir Distillery at the Bar Convent Berlin 2019.
Wonderful in depth look into the history and mission of this purveyor of Virginia spirits, and one of Virginia's leading Rye Whiskeys.
Great article on American Rye Whiskey from writer Liz Rhoades. Written for The Whiskey Wash.
Sazerac, Manhattan, and my favorite, the Boulevardier – rye whiskey plays a critical role in the cocktail scene, making for a superb base for classic and nouveau cocktails alike (or on the rocks…and hold the rocks too). There’s something about the flavor profile, that quintessential baking-spice character of rye whiskey that spiffs up the drabbest of drams. But why? What about this alluring elixir makes it so unique and quaffable? READ THE FULL ARTICLE HERE
Liz Rhoades is a Senior Research Scientist at Diageo’s NA Brand Technical Center in Plainfield, IL, where she specializes in fermentation, distillation, and maturation. In her current role, she is focused on whisk(e)y research & development, which involves the creation of new whisk(e)ys and the fundamental research to support their production. Recently, Liz expanded her distilling experience and took on a manufacturing role as Distillery Team Lead at the Bulliet Distilling Co. She has also presented at several industry conferences, including the annual meeting for the American Distilling Institute, American Craft Spirits Association, and the American Society for Brewing Chemists, as well as Tales of the Cocktail.
Similar to how grape varietals and terroir influence the style and character of wines, so do varieties of Rye cereal grains and the soils and micro-climates they grow in. Rye whiskey derives its unique spicy and flavorful characteristics from the complexity of the grain. Remember the last time you had a bite of Rye bread, it’s definitely got a lot more going on flavor wise than Wonder Bread. Many of the rye grains that grow well in the Mid-Atlantic region are very traditional varieties brought over from Europe. There are also some newer hybrids that are being tested especially for our climate and soil conditions by Universities in the region like Penn State. Following are three rye grain varieties which are finding popularity with rye grain farmers and distillers in Virginia.
Abruzzi /Abruzzese Rye
This Italian heritage grain is a great heirloom rye that has deep roots in the South and is known for its ability to handle the climate and soils. It is a very tall growing Roman variety. It is delicious in taste and a proven standard over many decades of use by distillers, brewers and bakers in the region. It is also commonly used as a cover crop.
Quote from the Anson Mills website - “But of all the grains we grow at Anson Mills, we prefer our humble Abruzzese rye for simple pleasures. We love the comforting visual of Abruzzese rye’s whole-grain coarse crimson germ and bran flecks in simple flatbreads, and we love the defining citric flavor “ping” in the very low-alcohol session beers brewed with Abruzzese rye (which are really food, in our humble opinion, not beer). Above all, we love the unimaginable depth of nutty flavors, and the lean and laser-focused mineral and robust field-grain flavors of just-harvested Abruzzese rye. Baked, roasted, simmered, or brewed in anything, the compendium of these flavors reminds us of clean spring mountain water over stone. Like no other grain, Abruzzese rye has a unique and romantic quality that expresses something from a thousand years ago.”
Danko rye is traditional grain originally from Poland and is a true milling-type rye. Rye grain has been the staple ingredient of Polish Vodkas for centuries. Danko has large, plumb, blue-green berries with a good flavor balance between bready and spicy. It is a favorite among beer makers and distillers. Bakers love it for producing authentic European-style rye breads with a deep nutty flavor. Agronomically, Danko rye also does well with our regional soils.
A newcomer on the block, this hybrid rye grain developed in 2014 by German breeder KWS, is making its presence known with successful trails at Penn State University and in multiple small and large scale commercial ventures. Brasetto, the best performer in Penn State’s rye trials in 2016, can produce 100 bushels per acre with good management. Three Monkeys Farm in Loudon County, Virginia has shown success with growing Brasetto rye organically and working with Virginia distillers to develop products.
Stories about Virginia Rye Whiskey, its makers and supporting organizations and individuals. as well as related distilled spirits industry news.