The former Master Distiller from Four Roses, Jim Rutledge, has created his own rye. The J.W. Rutledge Distillery spent more than a year developing the High Plains Rye. The blend includes five straight rye whiskeys from four states: Indiana, Kentucky, Ohio and New York.
When first nosing High Plains Rye, the mellowness of the four-year-old whiskey is quite apparent. Light spicy notes of allspice, nutmeg and white pepper are noticeable in this unique multi-state whiskey. Hints of cinnamon, brown sugar and butterscotch also present themselves. The whiskey changes slightly to persimmon fruit, light caramel and rye grain when a couple chips of ice are added. When sipped, persimmon is found mid-palate along with a gentle hint of cayenne pepper. There are also notes of soft vanilla bean, yet the rye stays assertive. The relatively short finish, which is typical of younger whiskeys, is surprisingly very gentle with a nice dry quality.