Review: Last Straw Distillery Rye Whisky / by Jason Hambrey

Image copyright by Last Straw Distillery Corp. Used with Permission.

Image copyright by Last Straw Distillery Corp. Used with Permission.

Virgin Charred Oak Casks
100% Rye
Distiller Last Straw (Vaughan, Ontario)

Last Straw has been waiting the long three years before their first whisky, and we have here the first - a big, 100% rye whisky. I was consulted in the early stages in helping them decide release proof, between 43%, 46%, and cask strength - 61.26%. They bottled at my favourite, 43% - it was good at all but the oak dominated at higher proofs while maturation hadn’t developed a bigger “middle” yet for the higher proofs.

Review (2019)

  • Batch: N/A

  • Bottling Code: N/A

  • Bottling Date: 2019

This is very spicy, and at the outset I know it is shaping up to be a great rye. It has the deep vegetal and spicy characteristics that I love in big rye whisky. The nose has apple, caramel, arugula, baking spice, lilac, brown sugar, and dried fruit – this is very good! The palate carries on from the nose, with a bit more of a bracing oak character. The spice, arugula, and dry spices really come through on the palate and lead through to the finish. It’s balanced with sweet oak and dried fruit. The finish has dried fruit, spice, arugula, caramel, oak, dried chanterelle mushrooms, and fennel.

Highly Recommended (49% of all whiskies I’ve reviewed to date get this recommendation or higher).

Value: Average, but encroaching upon high.  I really like the stuff, even for $75.