About Kentucky Owl 11 Year Old Straight Rye Whiskey Batch No. 1
Kentucky Owl was founded by Charles Mortimer Dedman, a local pharmacist, in 1879. After marrying his wife, Dedman was given a large parcel of land on the banks of the Kentucky River, as a wedding gift from his adopted father who was a local town judge. C.M. Dedman Distillery was established here on the banks of the Kentucky River, producing "The Wise Man's Bourbon" under Distilled Spirits Plant Designation "No. 16," one of Kentucky’s original distilleries and part of a booming industry.
Kentucky Owl achieved much success and production continued until Prohibition halted distillation. The family-run facility was no match for the "forces of teetotalism, temperance and eventually, the Feds" (producer). In 1916, Prohibition left several local distilleries with ample reserves of bourbon. As for Kentucky Owl, approximately 250,000 gallons of bourbon were left over in various stages of aging. Today these reserves would be worth about $40 million in inventory. After Federal agents descended on the Dedman’s distillery, the bourbon was seized and shipped up the river by barge to the state capital in Frankfort for "safekeeping" in a warehouse.
This batch of Kentucky Owl Straight Rye was released in September of 2017. The nose features elements of sweet pine, honey, nougat, vanilla, cloves, and lavender, followed by oaky undertones, subtle cedar sawdust or fresh split cedar. This rye is unique in that it offers rich aromas, without being too forwardly spicy on the nose. The palate is flush with immediate, mouthcoating notes of nutmeg and cinnamon, followed by pepper spice with vanilla on the front and anise across the middle. Subtle cinnamon spice clings to the finish.
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As American as the bald eagle, rye whiskey was first brewed in the American Northeast in the 1600s. Even George Washington distilled it after leaving the Oval Office, so there’s no way of denying its origin.
It’s distinguished from bourbon for its original and unique spicy notes.
By law, rye whiskey must be made from at least 51% rye grain, aged in new and charred oak barrels for at least two years, and bottled at no more than 62,5% ABV.
Check out our impressive selection of rye whiskeys, find your new favorites in The best-reviewed rye whiskeys, and explore our treasury of Best rye bottles under $100.