Distiller’s Friday Roundup – January 24th, 2020

January 24, 2020

This time of year isn’t known for a multitude of new releases, but there are a few notable products coming out to kick off 2020. First, Colorado’s TINCUP announced TINCUP Straight Rye Whiskey—an MGP rye cut with Colorado water. Then, Johnnie Walker Blue Label Year of the Rat limited-edition bottling will be available nationwide starting in January 2020. Finally, Wheel Horse Rye is a new rye whiskey aged between two to three years and produced at the O.Z. Tyler distillery in Owensboro, KY. We also have some tidbits of information to share on a new Japanese whisky, called Tenjaku, a new limited High West release, and another incredibly expensive and rare Tomatin bottling. Let’s dive in.

TINCUP Launches TINCUP Straight Rye Whiskey Nationwide

This week Colorado Whiskey company TINCUP announced a new addition to its core range: TINCUP Straight Rye. Like the brand’s other whiskeys, TINCUP Straight Rye is distilled in Indiana at MGP but cut with Rocky Mountain water to bring it down to 90 proof before being bottled in Colorado. Additionally, the whiskey ages in American white oak for three years.

TINCUP Straight Rye is available nationwide as of January 2020 with a suggested price of $29.99.

TINCUP Straight RyeTINCUP Straight Rye / Photo Credit: TINCUP

Johnnie Walker Blue Label Year of the Rat

Every year, Johnnie Walker releases a limited edition bottling honoring the animal of the year according to the Chinese zodiac. In 2019 it was the Year of the Pig, 2018 was the Year of the Dog and 2020 is the Year of the Rat. Artist Shirley Gong created this year’s limited edition bottle art.

Inside the bottle is the same blended whisky you’ll find in any bottle of Johnnie Walker Blue Label. The blend contains single malts and single grain whiskies from the Caol Ila, Benrinnes, Cardhu, Clynelish and Port Dundas distilleries.

Johnnie Walker Year of the Rat is available nationwide as of January 2020 with an SRP of $249.99 and bottled at 46% ABV.

Johnnie Walker Blue Label Year of the RatJohnnie Walker Blue Label Year of the Rat

Latitude Beverage Debuts Wheel Horse Rye

This week Latitude Beverage announced Wheel Horse Rye, the first aged rye whiskey to come out of the O.Z. Tyler distillery in Owensboro, KY since it reopened in 2016. The rye whiskey contains a mash bill of 95% rye and 5% malted barley. It aged between two to three years in new, charred American oak barrels and is bottled at 50.5% ABV.

“We are excited to enter this category, and even more excited to be doing so in partnership with O.Z. Tyler; a distillery with roots dating back to the late 1800s, and that once produced whiskeys for historic brands like Ezra Brooks, Green River and Old Medley,” said Terry Lozoff, VP of marketing and spirits director at Latitude Beverage.

Wheel Horse Rye is available at select retailers in Colorado, California and Illinois as of January 2020. It carries a suggested price of $27.99 per 750ml bottle.

Tidbits From Around The Spirits World

We often get wind of new spirits on the horizon before all of the details have been shared. Rather than wait until we know the full story, we want to share what we know so that you can be up to date on everything coming to shelves near you. Some of these spirits are limited releases, others are brand new, and others are so ultra rare and expensive that they’re not worth digging too deeply into. Let’s see what’s on the menu this week.

Tenjaku Japanese WhiskyTenjaku Japanese Whisky / Photo Credit: Tenjaku Japanese Whisky

Tenjaku Japanese Whisky

What we know: Tenjaku Japanese Whisky is a brand new product release in the United States in 2020. It’s a blend of whiskies that are distilled and aged in Japan for between 3 to 5 years in ex-bourbon casks. The grains used in the blend are corn (86%) and barley (14%). It is bottled at 40% ABV and has a suggested price of $39.99.

High West Campfire Aged in Ruby Port Casks

What we know: High West is releasing a new edition of Campfire Barrel Select: High West Campfire Aged in Ruby Port Casks. This product takes the High West Campfire and ages it in a Ruby Port Barrel for one year and 9 months before bottling it at 48.6% ABV. No word yet on price, availability or where/if it will be distributed. We will update you as we learn more.

Tomatin 1977 Warehouse 6 Collection

What we know: Tomatin 1977 Warehouse 6 Collection is the fourth release in the brand’s Warehouse 6 Collection. This single malt was distilled in 1977 and aged in a Sauternes wine hogshead for 42 years. Only 390 bottles are available, and each comes in a luxury wooden box. The whisky itself comes in a hand-blown crystal decanter, packaged alongside two crystal glasses, all created by the Glencairn company. It is bottled at 49% ABV and has a price of £3,000 (~$3,950 USD).

Whether you’re hunting for TINCUP Straight Rye or Johnnie Walker Blue Label Year of the Rat, we have you covered.

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