Glyph Molecular Whiskey Aims To Make Lab Made Whiskey Tasty - The Whiskey Wash

Glyph Molecular Whiskey Aims To Make Lab Made Whiskey Tasty

This is a story about whiskey born out of a lab in California. Buckle your seatbelts whiskey lovers, we are going to the science side.

Endless West is a self-described team of “scientists, sommeliers, writers, chefs and grad school dropouts” with a simple but very complex goal in mind – to create the next generation of wines and spirits. It is, quite simply, an attempt to take the age old process of aging spirits like whiskey and creating something through science that could be just as “renowned … without conventional production methods.” It is through this thought process and creativity they’ve unveiled Glyph Molecular Whiskey.

Our first challenge was to create a high-quality whiskey using a fraction of the usual resources: a smooth, charismatic whisky that sips like it’s been stored away for years, despite having never seen the inside of a barrel. – Endless West

So what exactly is Glyph Molecular Whiskey? How was it created? Will it be any good? Some of these questions we can answer now by sharing with you a bit of the process of its creation as detailed by Endless West on their website. Taste wise we will have to wait though to see if we can source a review bottle from them.

Glyph Molecular Whiskey

Glyph Molecular Whiskey (image via Endless West)

As for the process, here’s the synopsis from the mouth of the start up around something they call “note-by-note production.” Glyph, by the way, is being categorized as a spirit whiskey for those who wonder how it might fit into existing federal categorization guidelines for spirits:

Whiskeys owe their flavor, aroma, and mouthfeel to hundreds, sometimes thousands, of molecules that develop during distillation and barrel aging. These are the building blocks of all spirits.

To make Glyph, we source these molecules directly from plants and yeasts, rather than obtaining them through distilling and aging. By using the same building blocks as conventional distillers, we create fine spirits through a process we’ve developed called note-by-note production.

Our process is different, but our commitment to quality rivals the best in the business. Each component is meticulously tested for purity. Glyph is biochemically equivalent to the finest aged whiskies.

Step 1: Map – First, we create the profile of our desired spirit — its precise flavor, aroma, and mouthfeel — and identify the constellation of molecules (or notes) responsible for those characteristics.

Step 2: Source – Next, we gather those molecules from resource-efficient natural sources — for example, esters found in fruit, sugars found in cane and corn, and acids found in citrus and wood.

Step 3: Create – Lastly, we blend our ingredients together in small batches. Glyph is produced and hand-bottled in the historic Dogpatch neighborhood in San Francisco.

Step 4: Enjoy – Glyph is bottled and ready to be shared.

A more thorough look at the science behind this can be read over at The Wall Street Journal. This “first whiskey made from the molecule up” has official tasting notes which we’ve detailed below for your consideration, and it looks to be pricing for at least $35 at retail per 750ml bottle.

  • Aroma: Our pale amber whiskey yields subtle aromas of vanilla, roasted hazelnuts, and hints of caramel and honey.
  • Palate: The medium-bodied palate reveals a wider spectrum of wood and spice.
  • Finish: A hint of black fruit pokes its way through, but the whiskey ends with a firm and earthy finish.
About the author

Nino Marchetti

Nino Marchetti is the founder and editor-in-chief of The Whiskey Wash, an award winning whiskey lifestyle website dedicated to informing and entertaining consumers about whisk(e)y on a global level. As a whisk(e)y journalist, expert and judge he has written about the subject extensively, been interviewed in various media outlets and provided tasting input on many whiskeys at competitions. He also maintains a large private collection of whiskey from which he continually educates his palate on this brown spirit type.