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Collingwood 21 Year Rye Whisky "“ A Brown-Forman Production

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I bought this on a whim trying to fill out a box I was ordering from a store in California.  I had heard some good things about this particular whisky, so was happy to see it in stock and at a price much lower than I'd seen elsewhere.  As far as I can tell, this is not available in Virginia, though the regular Collingwood bottling is.  This is a Brown-Forman product made in the Canadian Mist distillery. While not a small batch operation, it really is a delicious whisky.

I haven't been a big rye drinker in the past, and the ones I have tried are tied to bourbon brands that I already enjoy (High West, EH Taylor, Willett, Sazerac).  After my first sip of this one, though, I feel like I've been missing out.  It's fruity and spicy in a way that bourbon isn't.  There's almost no sweetness, instead the rye spice comes forward in its place.  I've been drinking it neat, and it's a very warm drink all the way.  I'm not sure ice or having it chilled would improve the flavor.  It's finished in toasted Maplewood, which I think gives it a nice campfire depth.  It's smoky without being overpowering, and still manages to maintain that initial fruitiness.

I was able to pick up the standard Collingwood rye today at my local ABC store for $22, so I'm hoping it is only a minor step down from the 21 year.  If you can find this in DC and enjoy sipping whisky, I'd highly recommend picking up a bottle.  If not, it is available in stores in New York and California with liberal shipping policies.

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