Full Review

Union Horse

Union Horse
"Reunion" Straight Rye Whiskey

Category: Rye Whiskey

Date Tasted:
Country: USA
Alcohol: 46.5%
93 Points
Gold Medal
Exceptional
$51

Union Horse
"Reunion" Straight Rye Whiskey

Category: Rye Whiskey

Date Tasted:
Country: USA
Alcohol: 46.5%
Medium golden amber color. Aromas and flavors of chocolate mint cookie, leather, clay and putty, and spiced apricot with a lightly tannic, lively, fruity medium-to-full body and a warming, complex, long mixed peppercorns, menthol tobacco and fennel, raisin rye bread pudding, and rye flour finish. A spicy, grainy, youthful rye with lots of great sipping and cocktail possibilities.

Tasting Info

Spirits Glass Style: Fruity, Herbal, Spicy, Rich & Spirity
Aroma Aroma: chocolate mint cookie, leather, clay and putty, and spiced apricot
Taste Flavor: mixed peppercorns, menthol tobacco and fennel, raisin rye bread pudding, and rye flour
Smoothness Smoothness: Warming
Enjoy Enjoy: with cigars, on the rocks, neat and in cocktails
Cocktail Cocktails: Vieux Carré, Corn ‘n’ Oil, Manhattan
Bottom Line Bottom Line: A spicy, grainy, youthful rye with lots of great sipping and cocktail possibilities.

The Producer

Union Horse Distilling Co.

The Producer
11740 W 86th Terr.
Shawnee Mission, KS 66214
USA
1 913-492-3275

Rye Whiskey

Spirits Glass Glencairn Canadian Amber.jpg
Serve in a Canadian Whisky Glass
Rye Whisky must contain a minimum of 51% rye grain, be distilled at less than 80% ABV (160 proof) and be aged for a minimum of two years in new charred barrels. A small amount of straight Rye whiskey is bottled and marketed, but most of the industry production is blended into other whiskies to give them additional character and structure. Canadians frequently refer to their whisky as "Rye," though it is in fact made primarily from corn or wheat.

The Taste: While the best Bourbon is known for a creamy, caramel-like palate, the best Rye whiskey makes its presence known with a spicy, grainy, hard-edged firmness that is distinctive and unique. Usually very dry, with notes of walnut, toasted grain, and black pepper, straight rye has a bold assertive character that has earned it a small but dedicated following among discerning whiskey fans.

The Scotch-Irish immigrant distillers had some exposure to using rye in whiskey production, but for their German immigrant neighbors rye had been the primary grain used in the production of Schnapps and Vodka back in northern Europe. They continued this distilling practice, particularly in Pennsylvania and Maryland, where Rye whiskey, with its distinctive hard-edged, grainy palate, remained the dominant whiskey type well into the 20th century.

Rye whiskey was even more adversely effected by National Prohibition than Bourbon. A generation of consumers weaned on light-bodied and relatively delicate white spirits turned away from the uncompromising, pungent, full-bodied straight Rye whiskies. Production of Rye whiskies had vanished altogether from its Mid-Atlantic homeland by the 1980s. A handful of modern Rye whiskies are currently being made by Bourbon distilleries in Kentucky and Indiana. America’s first indigenous whiskey style is today only barely surviving in the marketplace. Its primary use is for blending to give other whiskies more character and backbone, although a small but vocal group of Rye whisky enthusiasts continue to champion it.