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Templeton Rye has been with us for the reason that daybreak of the “non-distillery producer” — and the backlash that got here together with them. (We first reviewed Templeton approach again in 2009, none the wiser and nicely earlier than individuals had been speaking about NDPs in earnest.)
Templeton had numerous avenue cred when it first launched and it rapidly grew to become each the whipping boy and public face for NDPs — paying $2.5 million in settlements after a category motion lawsuit. However regardless of the business outcries in opposition to unclear labeling and made-up backstories, Templeton has been and stays a survivor within the enterprise — and it’s paved the best way for actually tons of of producers to observe in its footsteps, the overwhelming majority of which supply their whiskeys from MGP in Indiana, simply as Templeton nonetheless does at the moment. (For what it’s price, it nonetheless bottles its whiskey in Iowa.)
Templeton says it’s nonetheless distilling its personal stuff, nevertheless it has but to hit the market. To make its releases its personal, it’s been mentioned that it provides a small quantity of flavoring to its 4 and 6 12 months outdated bottlings — that are marketed as simply rye, not straight rye — though you’ll discover the ten 12 months outdated single barrel launch is certainly a straight rye, so not adulterated. Templeton has been pretty quiet on this concern for nicely over a decade — it defined itself, type of, in a now-deleted web page within the mid-2010s — and also you received’t discover any new data about their secret sauce right here.
Through the years, Templeton has launched particular editions and line extensions — and just lately it lastly undertook a full redesign of its core lineup, with new bottles and labels for all three of its major choices. All three stay MGP rye — 95% rye, 5% corn — and every variously carries a 4, 6, or 10 12 months outdated age assertion. How are they faring as of 2022? Let’s dive in to recent bottles of every.
Templeton Rye 4 Years Previous – Final assessment 2009. There’s undoubtedly a curious character right here with a nostril that evokes dried apples, cinnamon, and chocolate, plus some brown sugar-laden sweetness. Very delicate and candy on the palate, the whiskey evokes notes of Apple Jacks cereal, butterscotch, and toffee, all doused in sugar syrup. Silky and seductive, it’s decidedly simple to drink, although the juicy, over-sweetened expertise feels more and more “doctored” the extra you sip on it. Wanting again at my tasting notes from 13 years in the past, it seems like average alterations might have been made within the intervening years, however in all probability not many. (I’d chalk a lot of these feedback as much as normal immaturity now.) I agree with my earlier evaluation of how drinkable that is — however its complexity is just about nonexistent, making it pretty ineffective within the broader rye class. 80 proof. B / $35 [BUY IT NOW FROM CASKERS]
Templeton Rye 6 Years Previous – Final assessment 2016. At a considerably increased proof — and two extra years of age — you’ll assume Templeton would minimize a a lot completely different expertise. The nostril says in any other case, once more showcasing a extremely sweetened character dominated by apple cinnamon and milk chocolate, with a stronger vanilla element — if solely barely. The palate has the added heat of the additional 5%-and-change abv, nevertheless it makes much less of an affect than you’d assume, including some texture and calmly dulling the sweetness, however in any other case remaining on message: apples (and plenty of them), cinnamon, chocolate, vanilla. In that order. Brown sugar on prime of all the pieces. I get completely not one of the bitter, rubbery notes I encountered again in 2016, however that hasn’t actually modified my general impression of the spirit. Except for the change in warmth, that is solely the barest departure from the 4 12 months outdated. 91.5 proof. B / $45 [BUY IT NOW FROM CASKERS]
Templeton Straight Rye Single Barrel 10 Years Previous – Final assessment 2017. Barrel quantity is supplied on the neck of every bottle. That is clearly a unique animal, particularly in that it smells much more like rye: woody, savory, and punchy with notes of floor pepper and a heavier clove character. The palate affords an analogous character, although there’s a delicate sweetness amidst its brisk complement of toasted grains, displaying notes of butterscotch and toffee. The upper proof offers the whiskey some gravitas and just a little peppery warmth, permitting the end to perk up and present some much-needed baking spice notes. A bit dusty because it fades away, the expertise returns to a extra savory, woodshop-driven character with a pepper observe that’s extra black than pink. Both approach, it’s a far completely different whiskey than its youthful siblings, virtually actually because of the lack of flavoring brokers within the combine. 104 proof. Reviewed: Barrel #2763. B+ / $80 [BUY IT NOW FROM DRIZLY] [BUY IT NOW FROM CASKERS]