Review #148. Thomas H Handy Rye 2012

Review #148 | /r/Bourbon Review #83 – Thomas H. Handy Sazerac Rye

The Schtick: This is a 6 year old, cask strength rye released as part of the Buffalo Trace Antique Collection each Fall. Proof varies with vintage.


Distiller: Buffalo Trace

Bottler: Buffalo Trace

ABV: 61.2% ABV (2012 Vintage)

Age: 6 Years

Source: Bottle, Purchased


Nose: There’s a ton of maple and metallic borwn sugar here. Thick rye kick, some oak and pine and more peppery, buttery sugar. It smells sweet, the ethanol is fairly well behaved despite a mild astringent tang. Mmmm.

Taste: There’s some definite heat here and I think that’s due to only 6 years in the barrel. It’s not too hot, but you can tell this is a heavy hitter. There’s lots of buttery rye spice and a delicious hint of maple and molasses. There’s a nice strong dose of pepper and layers of what seem to be clove and oak that diminish with time. The mouth feel is very good, I like it a lot and it is satisfying. Thick.

Finish: Long and sweet but growing a little hotter. It’s thick to chew through but sticks with me for a long time. Here is where more rye characteristics raise their heads – lots more spice and pepper. It grows less sweet with time and drier and spicier. I really enjoy this transition and it makes sense since this mashbill is likely barely legal rye.

Overall: It’s exceptional. It’s not a daily rye, and that’s fine, but it is very good despite a little rougher finish.

Thanks for reading!

Rank: 8


Decoded:

1 | Disgusting | So bad I poured it out.

2 | Poor | I wouldn’t consume by choice.

3 | Bad | Multiple flaws.

4 | Sub-par | Not bad, but many things I’d rather have.

5 | Good | Good, just fine.

6 | Very Good | A cut above.

7 | Great | Well above average

8 | Excellent | Really quite exceptional.

9 | Incredible | An all time favorite

10 | Perfect | Perfect


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