- Suggested retail price: $295
- Thursday, January 5 (for as long as it lasts), we're pouring one ounce for $9
In 2006, Raj Bhakta purchased a 500-acre dairy farm in the rolling hills of Vermont’s Champlain Valley. Today, the farm, which is being painstakingly restored to grow organic rye grains, is home to Master Distiller Dave Pickerell’s WhistlePig Rye Whiskey. Pickerell has Master’s Degree in Chemical Engineering, and served as Chairman of the Kentucky Distillers Association when he was Master Distiller at Maker’s Mark.
After leaving Maker’s, Pickerell embarked on a journey to find the perfect rye whiskey. “Rye, in its own essence, is just a brilliant grain,” says Pickerell. “I wanted to do rye because it’s America’s historical whiskey.” During the Revolutionary War, English blockades of American ports prevented the colonists from purchasing molasses in order to make rum. As a result, American distillers, including George Washington and Thomas Jefferson, started making rye whiskey.
WhistlePig is one of the few 100% rye whiskies available today. “Rye is the brat of whiskey grains. The higher the percent rye you get, the worse it behaves,” says Pickerell. “It gets sticky. It foams. A lot of my colleagues laugh at me for persisting to work with 100% rye because the nuisance level of going from 95% to 100% is unbelievable. Most people stop at 95%. We go ahead and push the envelope and make it 100%.”
After fermentation, WhistlePig is aged for ten years – first, in new American oak casks and then in second-use bourbon casks on the farm in Vermont.
Boss Hog Limited Edition
The Boss Hog bottlings are special single-cask reserves. They are limited and hard to come by. This Third Edition is the first rye whiskey ever finished in hogshead barrels. A hogshead is a 250 liter Scotch cask, the largest barrels in the whiskey business. These particular hogsheads were refitted with new American oak heads. Boss Hog III "The Independent" is a 14 year whiskey, bottled at cask strength (60.1%) into numbered bottles. This is a truly unique and truly American 100% Rye spirit at.
We will open one bottle at precisely 6:30 PM. We're going to offer this as long as the spirit lasts. If it's not gone tonight, we'll extend Spirits Project pricing through Friday.
Next week in The Spirits Project
Bourgoin "Microbarrique - Single Cask" Cognac 1994 - 22 year