Let me preface everything I say here: I’ve been sitting on this whiskey for a while—one decent (hefty) pour left in the bottle. It’s hard for me to reserve whiskey—I tend to drink it like a Mongol hoard was heading my way and I wanted to make sure there was nothing left for them. So this is a bit unusual clearly. I did this because I like this whiskey; I wanted to enjoy it and review it right. So here it goes.
It should be known, I am a great fan of American rye whiskies. They’re bold, peppery, and thoroughly warming. They’re great straight or in any of my favorite classic cocktails. Bulleit Rye is certainly no exception. Bulleit Rye is the good kind of gut shot, warming and mellow, without the consequence of a bullet gut shot. The death and all that. Unless you drink too much of this 90 proof love, then you could die. Don’t do that. Although the whole gut shot metaphor works really well with the “frontier whiskey” image that Bulleit projects. It’s like a western movie. Now to the taste: with a 95% rye bill, Bulleit does not skip on the spice—forget tequila; this would go great with Mexican food. That spice is balanced by a nice warm tingle on the tongue, just lovely and light enough for you to enjoy the slight oaky vanilla any good whiskey leaves. Frontier whiskey really is apt because the underlying flavors here are all robust and manly; there’s a bit of leather in there that makes me think if I was more of a cigar guy they’d be the perfect pair. It would definitely go well with anything cooked over a fire. I’m rather hungry, so it’d go well with a boiled boot too, if it came to that. Also, it’s that good.
I’ve enjoyed this particular bottle as a greeting for the return of two great whiskey-loving friends, and it served as a great lubricant for good conversation by a fireside. I’m glad I’ve saved this bottle, although I really hoped to give a better review—which is why I’m quite glad that I know a magical place where this stuff grows on shelves. Or something like that.