Don't you love when something new comes to town? Recently Wilderness Trail started distribution to MA. This was a newer label I had already heard some things about. The rye came recommended out of the line of 4 releases that hit shelves. With the barrel proof label, a sweet mash indication on the side label and a barrel number that suggests the rye inside is 4-5 years old I decided to pull the trigger. Let's see if it's any good!
Company on Label: Wilderness Trail
Whiskey Type: Straight Rye Whiskey
Mash Bill Percentages: 33% Corn, 56% Rye, 11% Malted Barley
Age: 4 years
Further identification: Barrel No. 16B21U, Bottle 179 of 250; NCF stated
Nose: Immediately smells woodsy. Lovely mossy earth draped in creamy caramel. Saw dust. Maple cherry - almost smoked. Damp smelling. Like a verdant forest floor in a dreamy cool summer morning after a rain. Very fleeting chocolate, taken over by a dry bark note. Chocolate is flashy and also tied to something funky. Lemon peel is as light as if it brushed up against a grainy piece of oak that took off a little bit of the skin between the splinters. This nose is both delicious, fun and layered - everything I could ask for out of a rye. Definitely has a bit of sweetness that is great for those that don't do the heavy, punchy spices some other ryes are known for. Post sip there is a bit of baking spice coming through now with nutmeg shining forward first, followed by white pepper, allspice and finally a light cardamom. Maybe I spoke a little too soon about the spices! A bit of candied ginger, raw cinnamon stick and some other concoction that reminds me a bit of pumpkin pie. Dry vanilla starts to overpower the nose late in the glass. A swirl kicks up a dry paper note, followed by a unique rye grain and finally a smooth caramel brittle. Lovely, lovely nose. I could sit and smell this for hours. Empty glass is a smoky oak and raisin.
Palate: First sip is intensely citrus sweet forward, with a dark cherry rolling across the tongue and settling right down into a thin maple syrup. Creamy vanilla and lemon intertwine almost magically on the linger. Slightly proofy cherries are the dominant introduction in subsequent sips. Spices are definitely here to stay now on both the palate and the post sip nose. A long swish in the mouth reveals not much else than the flavors already stated. The nose on this one really outclasses the palate in complexity, but I will say the mixture of flavors here are really enjoyable. Some dark raisin present now late in the glass. Very faintly tannic at times. Mainly fruit forward on the palate - definitely highly recommend this for the wine lover or sweet tooth!
A really impressive pour that is a highlight reel of a rye nose with a solid delivery on sips. This is one of those cases where I think they bottled this at the perfect time. I am glad to have this one!