Welcome back to the Blundon Bourbon Review! Today we're doing a comparison review of the 2011 Woodford Reserve Masters Collection. Both are 100% Rye and bottled at 92.4 proof with no age statement.The difference, is that one is aged in a new charred oak barrel while the other is aged in a barrel that has already been used. I love this 2012 release as it shows the significant impact that a barrel has on the aging process.
New Cask: Golden Brown
Aged Cask: Clear Straw
New Cask: Evergreen, mint, vanilla, caramel, nutmeg, honey, chocolate, apples. Love this nose!
Aged Cask: Much more subtle. Citrus, vanilla, caramel, hay and grass. Still quite enjoyable.
New Cask: Wintergreen, berries, chocolate, baking spices, cinnamon, oak. The rye is present but it doesn’t bite you.
Aged Cask: Much more grain forward than the Aged Cask. The rye is lighter; earthy tones such as grass are very prevalent. It's still smooth, and the oak note is more subtle. Still very enjoyable.
Finish: For being 92.4 proof, both of these Ryes have a fairly long finish.
New Cask: Sweet vanilla and caramel linger along with a strong rye and oak presence.
Aged Cask: Mint and evergreen linger with slight oak.
Conclusion: I love this release because it's an experimental release that is not your typical rye. If the New Cask Rye was a part of Woodford Reserve’s regular production lineup it would certainly be something I would keep stocked in my home bar. It is extremely smooth; its full body and unique notes of berries, chocolate, wintergreen, and rye make for an excellent whiskey. The Aged Cask, while more subtle and grain forward, is also quite enjoyable (however not something I would buy regularly).
New Cask: A (Great)
Aged Cask: B (Good)