Thomas H. Handy Sazerac Rye 2015

Thomas H Handy 2015 2.jpg

Thanks to /u/boyd86 for this sample.

All aboard the hype train! I’m drinking a BTAC!

Oh, wait, that’s stupid.

Okay, so back down to normal. We hear about these whiskies coming out, we hear about people camping out, we laugh, we get a chance to have some, and even some of us (myself included) join in, trying to have them.

They sell for ridiculous amounts and make you wonder if they are worth it. Have we gone over the price for the quality?

I mean… yeah. They are too high. We’re trading tulips, people. Learn from the past.

None the less, I’m drinking one of the two ryes from the line-up, Thomas H. Handy Sazerac Rye 2015. This one is uncut, unfiltered, bottled right from the barrel, with variation on how it tastes from year to year. It’s also named after the first man to use rye whiskey in a Sazerac cocktail.

Thus I need to clear up that he is in fact NOT the man who will jerk you off after the bar for a five-spot. I was incorrect on that last time. That guy’s name is Francine.

This was distilled in Spring 2009, so it’s not the oldest of the collection. Nor is it the strongest, with GTS being stronger for this year. However it did win best rye of the year when it came out.

So let’s see how this tastes, shall we?

Thomas H Handy 2015 1.jpg

Price: N/A

Region: Kentucky

Abv: 63.45%

Colour: 2.5YR 4/6

Nose: Cinnamon, rye bread, black cherry, potato soup, brown sugar, orange

Big spice, followed by rye. Exactly what we wanted. Let’s go home folks!


Okay, let’s move on.

Given time it has some molasses/black cherry notes that I enjoy. Some of the orange comes out given even more time.

Then there’s this creamy sort of earthiness which confuses me. I don’t hate it, I’m just confused. And impressed.

Taste: Molasses, cherry, cinnamon, orange, coconut oil, ginger

More molasses, more fruit. Not as much spice until later. Also this fatty, dry, coconut type flavour. Lots of it. Reminds me of this chili I made that was too hot and I added a little bit too much coconut oil to calm it down.

That didn’t really help. But it sure added coconut oil flavour it it.

Finish: Basil, strawberry, caramel, lemon zest, vanilla, wood, mineral, grape

Love the finish a lot more than taste. The basil and strawberry pair well together, the caramel/vanilla is right up my sweet loving lifestyle, and there’s mineral, wood, and lemon zest to calm it all down.

Long finish too. The grape is an odd addition that takes awhile to pick up. Each flavour is distinct and easy to point out, however still blends together nicely.

Conclusion: A nice rye, all in all. I can see why this one. It’s not floral, so if you’re looking for a floral rye, don’t buy this. It’s more of that cherry/molasses/spice rye. It’s certainly unique.

I wasn’t the biggest fan of the taste. I feel the coconut oil aspect was too much for me, and I wanted something else to balance it out.

For a different, interesting, and at the end of the day, orange/spice rye, this is it. I’m not in love with it, however I can see why others are.

Now to find someone who wants to make 5 bucks.


Bourbon review #187, Kentucky review #119, Whiskey Network review #995

2 thoughts on “Thomas H. Handy Sazerac Rye 2015

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