John Drew Rye Whiskey the Latest From a Cigar Mastermind - The Whiskey Wash
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John Drew Rye Whiskey the Latest From a Cigar Mastermind

By Nino Marchetti / April 25, 2016

John Drew Rye WhiskeyEditor’s Note: We’ve just launched sign ups for our upcoming The Whiskey Wash newsletterClick here to join our list and stay informed!

John Drew, the cigar mastermind behind the Drew Estate’s Pappy Van Winkle cigars we wrote about last year, appears to be ready for new horizons. He has now branched out into John Drew Brands, a venture focused on “spirits, craft beverages, and food,” which is starting out of the gate with a rye whiskey.

The new John Drew Rye Whiskey, according to its website, is a sourced product from Canada. This drops Drew into the non-distilling producer camp. This release was “distilled in Alberta” before being aged in oak for four years. It was then shipped to Florida and “held for” Drew for three more.

This whiskey, as mentioned over at Cigar Aficionado, was bottled at 90 proof and is for sale at $45. Interestingly, it is not said to have been created explicitly with cigar pairing in mind, but rather as something that stands on its own merits.

“My life’s journey has been hard, and sometimes painful,” said the 45-year-old Drew in a statement. “Permanently moving to war-torn Nicaragua in 1998 without speaking a word of Spanish was emblematic of the risks I embraced to have access to the raw materials we required for our cigars. While I’m proud of the successful brands & culture we’ve birthed at DE, my greatest pride and joy was living inside the factory for 14 years, only steps away from the daily production, packaging, and leaf processing.”

On a daily basis, I was working on the factory floor before breakfast. The dedication and hard work from the DE team in the USA allowed me to remain laser focused on brand ideation from an organic perspective on the factory floor, not from a whack corporate office.”