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Early final 12 months, Rob lined the primary two Restoration Rye releases out of Citadel & Key, considered one of Kentucky’s latest and most talked about distilleries painstakingly resurrected from an iconic and historic website (for that backstory, see Rob’s review). In 2021, the distillery debuted three new batches of Restoration Rye in restricted portions over the course of the 12 months whereas additionally introducing cask power single barrels in late fall as present store exclusives, every meant to showcase “the anomaly, the weird, the attention-grabbing.” We bought our arms on considered one of these uncommon single barrels (solely 9 launched to this point), together with the most recent Restoration Rye launch. Ideas comply with.
Citadel & Key Restoration Rye Single Barrel – The label on this single barrel presents just a little extra element than the usual batch releases, denoting on the bottom a 4-year-old age assertion, together with recipe, barrel quantity, and the cooper (Kentucky’s Speyside). The nostril is tame for cask power with plenty of brilliant, ripe orchard fruit, a grassy wintergreen high quality, and Bit-O-Honey candies. The palate punches with barrel proof flavors however not aggressively so. A wealthy layer of Demerara sugar saturates secondary flavors of muddled mint, clove chewing gum, and toasted marshmallow. A little bit of delicate astringency arrives on the peppery end earlier than rapidly fading to caramel candies and a little bit of candied ginger. 119.1 proof. A- / $65
Citadel & Key Restoration Rye Batch 3 (2021) – Just like the very first batches in 2020, this rye whiskey is created from a recipe of 63% rye, 20% malted barley, and 17% yellow corn and blended from small batches. At 3.5 years, age unsurprisingly hasn’t elevated a lot from its debut. The nostril is wealthy and toasty with buttery, bready rye notes slathered in mildly candy stone fruit jam. A little bit of expressed citrus, white pepper, and golden straw spherical out a uniquely complicated aroma. The palate is wealthy and oily, showcasing a refreshing stability of spice cupboard, dried apricot, and iced black tea full with a contemporary lemon squeeze. There’s an exquisite heat right here that simmers from the primary sip to a smoldering end accented by barely syrupy notes of tinned pears and steeped tea leaves. 105 proof. A / $45 [BUY IT NOW FROM DRIZLY]