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Orphan Barrel To Offer Scarlet Shade 14-Year-Old, Its First Rye Expression

The Orphan Barrel Whiskey Co., a part of Diageo, recently announced its first ever rye whiskey, Scarlet Shade, an expression that’s been all around bourbon country. The whiskey itself was distilled in Indiana, aged in Kentucky, and bottled in Tennessee.

Samantha Johnson, Scarlet Shade’s master blender, said that blending the rare 14-year-old rye whiskey stocks was the perfect opportunity to share Orphan Barrel’s first rye offering with the world.

She explained that Scarlet Shade crossed state lines from Indiana into Kentucky to age in new barrels of white oak for 14 years. And now in the bottle, the spirit is receiving accolades such as a gold medal at this year’s San Francisco Wine & Spirits Competition.

Orphan Barrel Scarlet Shade
The Orphan Barrel Whiskey Co., a part of Diageo, recently announced its first ever rye whiskey, Scarlet Shade, an expression that’s been all around bourbon country. The whiskey itself was distilled in Indiana, aged in Kentucky, and bottled in Tennessee. (image via Diageo)

The blender’s notes show that the 14-year-old rye features sweet vanilla buttercream and toasted oak aromas. It tastes of warm baking spices, rye toast and orchard fruits, and has a sweet orange marmalade and dark chocolate finish.

Scarlet Shade clocks in at 90 proof (45% ABV).

“This latest Orphan Barrel offering is a nod to the journey we are all on and the travelers that we are. I can’t wait to share this unique experience with whiskey enthusiasts and showcase the dedication that went into crafting Scarlet Shade,” Johnson said.

The whiskey maker describes the label design as an homage to the history of Scarlet Shade. In the center, a cardinal, state bird of Indiana and Kentucky, is surrounded by Indiana’s state flower, the peony, and perched on a skull to honor lost loved ones.

Orphan Barrel Scarlet Shade will begin rolling out at select spirits retailers across the U.S. this May, and has a suggested retail price of $199.99.

For more information, check out www.orphanbarrel.com.

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Here are my recommendations for those of you who want something sweet and luscious, but a little different in your glass this year. 

Gary Carter

Gary Carter has been at the helm of metro newspapers, magazines, and television news programs as well as a radio host and marketing manager. He is a writer/editor/photographer/designer by trade, with more than 30 years experience in the publishing and marketing field. Gary enjoys working to build something great, whether that be a novel project, a start-up, an organization, a fresh-face to the journalistic world, or even something as simple as a short story. A native Texan and a Pacific Northwest convert, he is a whiskey enthusiast who cut his teeth on it ... literally!

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