Rick Wasmund went to Scotland two decades ago and realized he wants to makehis own Whiskey. He managed to become an intern at Bowmore where he got his mad skills. Then, he returned to Sperryville, Virginia, and founded his own distillery. Now it's the only distiller in the US to do all of its own grain malting, using barley specifically bred for him.
Then, what Wasmund does, is roast the malted barley with applewood smoke, which does the same thing to barley as to a rack of ribs: it adds complex flavors and a hint of sweetness. Once distilled, he places the Spirit in Bourbon casks and adds a packet of chips of various charred wood (oak, apple, cherry). Wonder why? A Whiskey that's aged for one year and drinks like a much older one. One day, Wasmund sent a sample of his Whiskey that was "chip-aged" for six weeks to the Scotch Whisky Research Institute and they figured it's been aged for at least eight years! (This particular bottle has been aged for 42 months, though.)
We'd let Christian fool us anytime he wants, because this unique-tasting Whisky is sweet, smoky, buttery and delicious. Have a neat one for us, too!
I've never had a whisky quite like this one. The smell is old books and leather. The taste surprisingly smooth I was initially skeptical but found it to be wonderful on the rocks. Not for everyone but for me it was a great departure from boring, predictable whisky.
It is a very good, intense, American Single Malt Whiskey with an intense birth; while a bold life leads to a long & fiery death.
pour Jim Beam through a cat box, dump a bottle of pickle juice and some black pepper and it would taste better than this
First impression was of drinking “wet”. It’s like drinking whiskey made from Everglades water with hints of spoiled Halloween candy
This is too high test, and sharp for me to drink neat. I make a killer cocktail with it though. Simple syrup, fresh lemon juice and blackberries wildly shaken. Flavor still cuts through. Also, i think it was much pricier at the distillery.
This runs 48%. This was a bit too sharp for me. I used it for very swanky bourbon cocktails instead of straight and they were delicious. Strong flavor.
Worst whiskey I've had, tastes like hay and metal
Very smoky, but smooth.
Very interesting. Smoke is obviously different than what you may expect. But I think good In a different way... worth a taste
This is really interesting. Wood smoke is definitely the dominant flavor. I disagree with all the reviews saying it’s awful - it’s definitely not bad. It’s a bit different though. If you like the flavor of wood smoke (not peat, which this definitely is not), you’ll probably like this.
I really did not like this at all. At the risk of being crass...
It had forward notes of kicked up dirt road gravel with after hints of what used to be caramel.
The flavor...was like something salty and metallic was drug through that gravel road, followed by an aftertaste of more gravel and something I'm embarrassed to mention.
In the immortal words of Mr. Horse, "No Sir, I don't like it."
This is the first whiskey I can say that I would reject, if somebody purchased it for me. It offends just about every sense. The smell is overwhelming, not just of smoke, but of the dirt used to put out a campfire--coupled with nail polish remover. The taste is harsh, and closely resembles the smell--like licking the inside of an old man's mouth after 3 days of pipe smoking in front of a peat-fire. Hard pass.
From the nose through the finish it is all smoke. This is the first non-Scotland single malts I tried. This Virginia distillery malts barley on a floor similar to a Scotch distillery but burns apple, cherry and oak to fire the still and those smoky, versus peaty flavors overpower this 96 proof whisky.
Quite possibly the worst whiskey I have tasted. Pungent nose leads to a metallic taste, as if it were distilled in the barrel of a used rifle. The black liquorice aftertaste summed up this awful tasting experience.
Pungent nose. Flavor was Smokey and had a chemically/metallic taste to it that was somewhat unpleasant. No thanks
Too hot for the smokiness.
very earthy, grassy. Spicy, smoky,
Fresh cut grass meets forest fire.
Well built whiskey but flavor profile is not for everyone.
Love the smoke.
Not a fan at all. Very pungent nose. Metallic/smoky flavor. Spiral is definitely accurate, all the way to the liquorice finish. Might be
Loved the smoky smell and taste!
This was my 3rd choice in the 3 samples. Was lacking a thing or two. Spicy sums it up. Not my favorite.
Smelled of earth and soil and had a smoky twinge to it. Not for me.
A disappointment, given how much I enjoy their rye. Unbalanced, and flavors of damp grass rather than dry smoke. Appreciate the spice, but not going to be adding this one to the bar.
All I could taste was a chemically paint flavor. Did not enjoy.
Disappointing drink. Maybe the combination of cherry and smoke turns to leather, but I tend to think cherry pipe tobacco. So here the flavor spiral doesn’t work for me. Leather up front and in the nose. Smoke and oak after stir up oil for the umami. Just not impressed.
Smooth. A definite winner best or on the rocks.
The smoke surprised me but finished well.
Well-rounded, but a bit overly Smokey.
A Little medicine-y.
As the first non-scotch single malt I’ve tasted I have to say it was quite good. I could clearly taste the flavors. I would recommend this to anyone looking to branch out.
A whiskey with a unique flavor from the apple wood. Took me some getting used to, and worth doing, but not your every day drink. Great with a little water.
There's a version sealed with blue wax that's even better, aged a bit longer in port casks.
Amazing. Didn't think I'd like it, but they use floor-malting with apple and cherry wood smoking. Wasmund was trained at Bowmore on Islay. Apparently he learned his trade well.
I love it. It's become a staple.
Innovative and delicious, great new addition to the cabinet and for sipping around the fireplace.
The spiciest, most unique Rye I've met. Smooth for its very young age, in a class of its own.
Young. Funky smokey flavor. Almost mesquite. Interesting to try given the price, but also painless to miss.
A good young whiskey. It has some nice subtleties to the flavor. It smells like it's going to be very hot, but turns out much smoother than expected. Good for mixing, but I could enjoy it straight in a pinch.
This is a young whiskey with potential. The flavors are interesting and have a character all its own. I will follow them in the future and look towards their products as they mature as distillers!
This is possibly the worst Whisky I've ever tasted. Certainly the least subtle. It's flavour is a combination of bitter wood and some sickly fruit taste - like over-flavoured cough medicine or mouthwash