Woodford Reserve has announced the release of its latest permanent product extension, Woodford Reserve Kentucky Straight Rye Whiskey, which will be available for purchase in select markets throughout the US beginning in February.
Woodford Reserve Rye is the third permanent line extension to join the portfolio, which includes the original Woodford Reserve Distiller's Select and Woodford Reserve Double Oaked. Woodford Reserve prides itself on maintaining an original and contemporary approach that focuses primarily on the adjustment of one of the five sources of flavour to craft whiskey. To complement and emphasise the spice characteristics found in the original Woodford Reserve, the Rye uses a base that's 53 percent rye, resulting in a liquid that's reportedly both "more balanced, and refreshingly subtle."
Since 2006, Master Distiller Chris Morris has been hard at work crafting this new line extension. Because of the consistency of the mash, rye is notoriously more difficult to craft than a traditional bourbon, requiring more attention to detail throughout production.
"One of the primary reasons behind Woodford's growth into the number one selling ultra-premium bourbon in America is because of our commitment to flavour, and that's something that's engrained in everything we do," said Morris. "Not only does it affect how I approach bourbon production personally, it's the lens through which we view the future of Woodford Reserve, and I couldn't think of a liquid that better embodies that than the rye."
"As a brand, one of the things we're most proud of is the passion and commitment that our fans have, both for Woodford Reserve, whiskey and bourbon in general. For us, releasing a rye is a chance to give back to these consumers," said Woodford Reserve Brand Director Jason Kempf. "Time and time again, we kept hearing requests for a rye. Woodford Reserve has always maintained a commitment to the spirit of innovation, and the rye is no exception. We're excited to give our fans something they've been so vocal about for so many years, and that is finally ready to share with them."
Woodford Reserve Rye is produced with the same heritage and tradition that surrounds the site of the iconic Woodford Reserve Distillery in Versailles, Kentucky. As early as the mid-1800s, the Woodford Reserve Distillery has been the location for visionary distilling practices, an attitude that Oscar Pepper and Master Distiller James Crow, the first people to distill at this location, fully embraced. Together, they honed several whiskey production processes that continue to be used throughout the industry. Today, the Woodford Reserve Distillery is visited by more than 130,000 visitors each year.