InchDairnie debuts inaugural rye whisky
Fife-based distillery InchDairnie has released RyeLaw as its first Scotch whisky, made with locally grown rye and barley.
The whisky was distilled in 2017, and clocks in at 46.3% ABV. It is made up of 53% malted rye and 47% malted barley, which is ground to be ‘extra fine’.
The cereals used in the whisky have been mashed using a Meura mash filter, one of only two used in Scotland, while the expression has also undergone fermentation using a rye-specific yeast, which results in lower yields, but higher flavour.
Speaking exclusively to The Spirits Business, Scott Sneddon, distillery manager, said: “For me, it’s very balanced. Being so young, it’s still fiery with a long finish, it’s got a lovely complexity and sweetness.
“Rye is very difficult to process, so by having the mash filter, we can process rye at a higher level. There’s a lot of people in the industry that have tried [without], but the mechanical separation means we can process the rye a lot easier.
“We’ve been anticipating people seeing the first product from us, but a rye that is different too.
“Rye has a very selective audience, and I want this to be for the general consumer, to appreciate the spice and the sweetness. It’s malted, and there are only two Scottish ryes out there, and they’re not malted. I’m excited to showcase rye to the masses.”
Distillation of the inaugural whisky took place in a single week in the whole year, and only 200 casks of the year one vintage have been bottled and made available worldwide.
Double distilled in pot stills and matured in charred new oak casks, RyeLaw is available to purchase from today for RRP £110 (US$137.24) from select retailers including Selfridges, The Whisky Shop, The Whisky Exchange, Luvian’s, and Speciality Drinks.
RyeLaw is presented in a bottle featuring a ripple effect on one side, representing the company’s ‘3 M’s’ philosophy – innovation in materials, methods, maturation.
InchDairnie Distillery managing director Ian Palmer said: “We’ve been preparing for this day for well over a decade, and it is only now that we feel the quality of RyeLaw meets our exacting standards that we are putting it into bottles.
“And what a whisky it is. While we are rooted in Scotch whisky tradition, we have explored what is possible when agriculture meets industry and innovative technologies combine with methodology, to create a superb rye whisky that is sure to excite palates.”
Subsequent vintages are already maturing in different types of cask to those from year one’s Ozark Mountains. RyeLaw is non-chill filtered.
‘Sippable’ rye whisky
Sneddon added: “The rye spiciness with vanilla, sweet biscuit cereal and dried fruit notes seem much more defined than rye whiskeys from America we’ve compared it to.
“There’s a richer, more luxurious mouthfeel and great balance, which are certainly helped by the favourable maturation conditions we have in Fife compared to Kentucky. The use of malted rye in the mash means we have a softer, more sippable style of rye whisky. We look forward to hearing if our American cousins agree.”
In March, Rémy Cointreau-owned Bruichladdich Distillery unveiled the first whisky to be classed as an Islay single grain Scotch, made with locally grown rye.
In December 2018, Arbikie released the first rye whisky distilled in Scotland for more than 100 years – Arbikie Highland Rye