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Highline Triple Rye Whiskey




Whiskey Review: Highline Triple Rye Whiskey

Tasting Notes:

Blend of 5-, 5- 1/2-, and 10-year-old rye whiskeys; 48.5% ABV; priced at $79.99.
This has your prototypical golden amber color, well-defined legs, and moderate viscosity inside the glass.
This is an unusual nose for what you’d expect from a rye blend. It has baking spice, pepper, Hot Tamales, watermelon, and mint chocolate.
OK, I’m not sure what is going on here. There is some rye consideration on the front, but an unexpected, overbalanced sweetness reminiscent of watermelon, apple candy, black pepper, cherry cola, and baked bread drags it down.
This goes down the throat okay, but the finish is short, a bit tart, and not overly interesting.
This whiskey could be better balanced in terms of the flavor profile. While I appreciate the high malt barley in the mix, the flavors from that only do the rest of this expression a little justice, making the whole thing off base. Is it because of the choice of rye ages and percentages of each in the blend if all follow the same mash bill profile?

Editor’s Note: This whiskey was provided to us as a review sample by the party behind it. This in no way, per our editorial policies, influenced the final outcome of this review. It should also be noted that by clicking the buy link in this review our site receives a small referral payment which helps to support, but not influence, our editorial and other costs.

Whiskey companies started by women, even today, are still a relatively scarce consideration compared to the overall total percentage of ownership across the industry. Christi Lower, a former pediatric surgery PA, mother of four, and whiskey enthusiast, chose to ask “why?” when starting her own spirits company, Highline Spirits, based out of Michigan.

For Lower, she envisioned “a transformative spirits company untethered by tradition, history, orientation, gender, or beliefs.” Not only, in her mind, did this mean challenging gender norms in the spirits industry, but it also went against traditional distilling taboos. She’s focused Highline on “sourcing, blending, batching, and special-finishing super-premium and ultra-premium small-batch spirits completely unique unto themselves.”

“As I started learning about the industry over ten years ago,” said Lower when she launched her brand last August, “I was fascinated with the evolution of a spirit based on weather, terroir, wood, grain, and yeast. Yet I was also struck by how myopic the final distillate landing in the bottle could be. Most whiskey on the shelf is controlled by a very small group of people, marketing to an American consumer who no longer looks as it did when the industry started.

“Our culture is evolving. Our spirits should also be evolving with different personalities, perspectives and practices to reflect that growth and dimension.”

To this end, alongside hiring a diverse staff, Highline entered the market with four limited-edition flagship products. The one I’m reviewing today, Highline Triple Rye Whiskey, is a blend of 5, 5 1/2, and 10-year-old rye whiskeys from an undisclosed source (there’s a high malt barley indication from the brand on this one as well). It is bottled at 48.5% ABV and priced at $79.99.

Nino Kilgore-Marchetti

Nino Kilgore-Marchetti is the former founder of The Whiskey Wash, an award-winning whiskey lifestyle website dedicated to informing and entertaining consumers about whisk(e)y globally. As a whisk(e)y journalist, expert, and judge, he has written extensively about the subject, been interviewed in various media outlets, and provided tasting input on many whiskeys at competitions.

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