By Debbie Shocair
On the heels of their 2016 award-winning release of a 16 year straight rye, Lock Stock and Barrel has launched an equally impressive 18 year straight rye whiskey. This new, but more aged release is among the oldest straight ryes available, and is certainly the oldest one I have had the privilege of enjoying.
This newest expression of Lock Stock & Barrel is Canadian-sourced, double-distilled from a mash that is 100% rye grain, aged in new charred American Oak barrels in cold weather for a full 18 years (that’s nearly a generation!) before being bottled at a hefty 109 proof.
On the nose, this remarkable 18 year rye had unusual notes of pine, along with maple, vanilla and cardamom. Aromas of candy corn flirted with my senses as well.
Breaking it with a ½ teaspoon of water brought the cardamom to the front as well as making the candy corn notes bolder. The mouthfeel was all across the top of the tongue, but was not overly bold, even at 109 proof.
The finish was surprisingly long, interesting and lovely. As it began it was all about buttery gingerbread, evolving to something like a traditional hot toddy sans lemon, before ending as sweet pipe tobacco. It was an extremely long and satisfying finish.
This 18 year straight rye from Lock Stock & Barrel is an exceptional one, and with the holidays approaching, makes a perfect gift for the whiskey lover in your life. And, if that whiskey lover is you, look in the mirror and tell yourself you are deserving of just such a whiskey as this.
A limited release, LS&B 18 Year Rye and is available in limited quantities nationwide at about $229.