Classification: Straight Rye Finished in a Sloe Gin Cask
Company: Lost Lantern
Distillery: Spirit Works Distillery
Release Date: March 2022
Age: 3 Years
Mashbill: 70% Organic Rye, 20% Specialty Brewing Malts, 10% Malted Rye
Color: Dark Bronze
MSRP: $100 (2022)
Strawberry cream | Sweet berries | Rhubarb | Dab of rye spice | Light grain | Faint hint of oak | Bouquet of fruits form an intriguing opening
Sweet strawberries | Vanilla cream | Peppercorn | Rye spice | Charred oak | Bold defined spice with layered sweetness
Bold rye spice | Sweet oak | Leather | Sharp peppercorn | Faint strawberries | Mouth filling lingering heat
The fourth bottle in Lost Lantern’s Spring 2022 Collection is a sourced barrel from Spirit Works Distillery out of California. This whiskey was produced by finishing a 2 year old rye for an additional year in a cask that first held gin, followed by finishing in another barrel that previously held sloe gin. The result of using a 3rd fill barrel is a 207 bottle batch of whiskey that produces some really intriguing results.
Sloe gin is traditionally a red liqueur made with gin and sloes, which are a relative of a plum. The sloe gin barrel influence is clear right from the get go. Raising the glass greets your senses with scents of sweet fruits that carry with them hints of spice and grain. It’s a really interesting bouquet that draws you in. The palate carries over these same sweet and spicy notes, however, the whiskey makes its proof known here, as the spice intensity ramps up. This ramp up carries over to the finish as you're overwhelmed with spice.
Overall, this is one of the few instances where lowering the proof might benefit the whiskey greatly. The unique sweeter notes imparted by the sloe gin finish are truly delightful, but get overpowered by the proof a bit in the later part of the sip. That said, Lost Lantern has a knack for selecting intriguing casks, and their Spirit Works California Straight Rye Whiskey Finished in a Sloe Gin Cask is no exception.