Disclaimer: Paul and Merry Beth of MB Roland are my friends. And in my statement of ethics I promised to disclose when I am reviewing one of my friend’s products and to only review them when it was truly something I really liked. This is one of those times.
At this point, I have been married almost half of my life. And by almost, I mean within a few months or so of half my life. The great thing about hitting a milestone anniversary is that people give you things. In this case, my friends at MB Roland gave me a bottle of their new Straight Rye Whiskey.
This batch of rye is MB Roland's first straight Rye Whiskey. And when I got it, it was damn near fresh from the barrel. One of the cool things about these guys is that they sell all their whiskey at barrel proof so this Rye was dumped and bottled on one day and in my hands the next. That's pretty cool.
This bottle wasn't given to me as a review sample, but since I am always on the lookout for content that I didn't need to buy, I warned them that I might be reviewing it. But, friends or not, I give these things honest reviews. So let's get down to it.
MB Roland Rye Whiskey
Purchase Info: This was an anniversary gift from friends. I have no idea what it would cost. I got one of 90 bottles though from this batch if that helps.
Details: Batch 1. Bottle 74 of 90. 54.7% ABV. Mashbill: 68% Rye, 27% White Corn, 5% Malt. Aged in a New Charred oak barrel with a #4 char.
Nose: Anise, clove, brown sugar, unroasted peanuts, mint, and green apple.
Mouth: Brown sugar, mint, and baking spices such as clove and cinnamon.
Finish: Warm and long with lingering notes of mint, anise, and cinnamon. The finish is where the distinctive flavor of the MB Roland white corn note appears.
Thoughts: This is not nearly as hot as you would expect from a roughly 110 proof whiskey to be. It is extremely drinkable neat. So much so that it shocked my wife when I told her what the proof was as we did our tasting. I'm digging this neat, but I also like it in cocktails. I've tried it in a Sazerac, a Manhattan, a variant on a Boulevardier, and a Whiskey Sour. It did well in the Manhattan, the Sazerac and the Boulevardier riff. It wasn't great in the Whiskey Sour though, so if making cocktails with this, I would recommend sticking with cocktails that will play off the anise note in there. Overall, if you have liked other MB Roland whiskeys, you will like this as well.
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