Old Forester Rye Whiskey Joins The Old Forester Whiskey Family

| January 15, 2019

The folks behind the Old Forester bourbon label have long been proud of their popular bourbon, with it being the flagship standard for many, many decades. The brand is being pushed in new directions now though, with parent company Brown-Forman having just introduced the new Old Forester Rye Whiskey.

Old Forester Rye Whiskey, according to those behind it, is the Kentucky distillery’s first new grain recipe in nearly 150 years. It is inspired by the historic recipe for Normandy Rye, a brand which Brown-Forman acquired in 1940. The mash bill consists of 65 percent rye, 20 percent malted barley and 15 percent corn.

Old Forester Rye Whiskey

Old Forester Rye Whiskey (image via Old Forester)

“Our signature bourbon recipe has done this brand proud through Prohibition, World Wars and changing consumer palates,” said Campbell Brown, Old Forester President and great-great grandson of founder George Garvin Brown, in a prepared statement“This January we will create a new tradition with a Kentucky Straight Rye that will capture the hearts and excite the palates of experienced Rye drinkers and curious whisky enthusiasts alike.”

“Throughout history, rye whisky showcased a balanced grain recipe,” added Chris Morris, VP Master Distiller-Whiskey Innovation. “The high proportion of malted barley in this traditional recipe allows for a wholly natural fermentation process, leveraging Old Forester’s proprietary yeast strain. The generous percentage of Malted Barley yields a unique floral character, producing a remarkably balanced Rye.”

Plans call for Old Forester Rye Whiskey to debut in February for around $23 per 750 ml bottle. It is bottled at 100 proof, and you’ll find some official tasting notes at the end of this article for your consideration.

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“Old Forester Rye stays true to our standards of quality, consistency, and balance while delivering on value as only Old Forester can,” noted Old Forester Master Taster Jackie Zykan. “The spicy, yet floral complexity of this expression offers a completely different flavor profile than its bourbon cousin. At 100 proof, it plays beautifully in cocktails, but also stands up boldly on its own.”

  • Aroma: Rich brown sugar and magnolia blossom, with hints of soft sassafras and candied lemon
  • Taste: Spice awakens immediately leading with sharp black pepper and cinnamon stick, rounding out with notes of dried dill and baked apple
  • Finish: Allspice and peppercorn introduce a long and dry finish which ignites with pine, anise and bright lemon zest


Nino Kilgore-Marchetti

Nino Kilgore-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...