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Rabbit Hole Distilling, Bourbon and Rye

Posted on by Eric Burke

I state in my Statement of Ethics that if I accept a review sample, I will disclose it at the beginning of the article. Rabbit Hole Distilling provided me with two media kits, each with a logo Glencairn glass and a 1.5-ounce sample (one was rye, one bourbon). I'd like to thank them for providing the sample with no strings attached. 

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It's the first post after Christmas, and it's only fitting that I review a couple of whiskeys that I received for free. Both of these are from Rabbit Hole Distilling in Louisville, KY. Since their founding in 2012, they have been using a combination of contract distillation and sourcing to get the liquid for their whiskeys. Contract distillation for their rye and bourbon and sourcing for their "Fingerprint Series." In October 2016, they broke ground for a 20,000 barrel-per-year distillery in Louisville. 

Tonight I'll be looking at their rye whiskey and their bourbon. Both are two years old and were created by a team of distillers. Cameron Tally, formerly of Brown-Forman and Wild Turkey, Larry Ebersold formerly of  Seagram's and Pernod-Ricard, Dave Scheurich, formerly of Brown-Forman and Randy Allender, formerly of Jim Beam. The Rabbit Hole Rye is a 95% rye mash bill, which through me for a loop until I realized that Mr. Ebersold was Master Distiller at the distillery now known as MGPi (which is most well known for the 95% rye whiskey they sell to many producers). The Rabbit Hole Bourbon has a unique mash bill of 70% corn, 10% malted wheat, 10% malted barley and 10% honey malted barley. 

Rabbit Hole Bourbon

Purchase info: I received a review sample, but this is retailing for $41.99 at Total Wine in Louisville, KY.

Details: 47.5% ABV. 2 years old. Aged in #3 char barrels from Kelvin Cooperage. Barrel entry proof was 110° proof. Mash bill of 70% corn, 10% malted wheat, 10% malted barley and 10% honey malted barley.

Nose: Very young and heavy on the grain. Mint and floral notes predominate with cinnamon underneath. 

Mouth: Floral grains, mint, and cinnamon candies. 

Finish: Short to medium with lingering floral grains and cinnamon candies. 

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Thoughts: Due to the intriguing mash bill, this was the whiskey that I was most interested in trying. And while it isn't ready yet, it shows a lot of promise. Give this a few more years in the barrel, and I'll probably be bringing some home with me when I visit Kentucky. For now, though, I'd have a hard time recommending this except as a novelty or if you are a fan of very young bourbons. 

Rabbit Hole Rye Whiskey

Purchase info: I received a review sample, but this is retailing for $49.99 at Total Wine in Louisville, KY.

Details: 47.5% ABV. 2 years old. Aged in #3 char barrels from Kelvin Cooperage. Barrel entry proof was 110° proof. Mash bill of 95% rye, 5% malted barley.

Nose: Mint, cedar, hints of pickle and vanilla.

Mouth: floral mint, cedar, vanilla and baking spices.

Finish: Minty and warm. Of short to medium length. 

Thoughts: Like many rye whiskeys, this shows better at a young age than the bourbon did. It's similar to a young MGPi rye, not surprising due to its mash bill and pedigree. It's still really young, but worth a look if you are a fan of young ryes and are ok with a $50 price tag.

EDIT: an earlier version fo this post claimed that the ABV of both whiskies was 95%, I forgot to do math and didn't convert the proof to ABV. That has been corrected.


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