Caldwell distillery sells new rye whiskey at Idaho liquor stores

Caldwell distillery sells new rye whiskey at Idaho liquor stores

Article from Idaho Statesman
By Michael Deeds, August 26, 2015

Icy-smooth vodka maker or not, award-winning Koenig Distillery isn’t afraid to grab your attention with a little burn.

The Caldwell spirits producer made that clear with Seven Devils Straight Bourbon Whiskey, a pleasurable, 90-proof offering that debuted in early 2014.

Newly released Seven Devils Rye Whiskey is its fiery cousin. “Spice” is a descriptive word commonly used to describe rye whiskeys. Take a whiff of Koenig’s version, and there’s no mistaking: That there is alcohol.

Derived from a mash bill of 95 percent rye and 5 percent malted barley, it’s a welcome tradeoff in an industry that too often markets easy drinking over interesting drinking. Distilled in Kentucky then transported to Idaho, it lives in oak barrels at Koenig for a minimum of four years. It’s then cut to 84 proof with Idaho water from the “snow-capped peaks of the Seven Devils Mountain range,” as the bottle explains.

Trickled into a small glass, straight, it’s intense. After an initial burn, the nose reveals a hit of maple and hint of vanilla. Non-purists will benefit from plopping in a cube to further open the flavors. Although inherently different from Seven Devils’ bourbon, this rye expression exudes its own contemplation-worthy depth of tastes. It also makes a fine rye whiskey and cola — so don’t be afraid to “try rye” if you’re stuck in a Jack and Coke rut.

Subjective-taste bottom line: I’d normally treat Seven Devils bourbon as a neat sipper or ice companion, and the rye as an ice companion or mixer.

Seven Devils Rye Whiskey and Straight Bourbon Whiskey cost $29.95 for a 750-milliliter bottle. You’ll find them at Idaho liquor stores.

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