I have known Jason Brauner for about 15 years now and as long as I have known him, he has always wanted to make his own whiskey. In the last year or so, Jason and some other investors have taken the first step to fulfill Jason’s dream by creating Buzzard’s Roost Straight Rye Whiskey. They purchased barrels of whiskey from MGP and finished the whiskey in heavily toasted new oak barrels to create this brand. They have single-barrel and small-batch versions of Buzzard’s Roost which prices at about $60 for the small-batch and $80 for the single barrel. It has been selling well for them and a second release is planned for later this fall. Jason hopes to build a distillery and start making the whiskey himself. I think his dream will come true.
Buzzard’s Roost Single Barrel Straight Rye Whiskey
Age: 3 years old
Nose: Rye grass, vanilla with a little cherry and raspberry fruit, a hint of oak and a trace of mint.
Taste: Rye grass, vanilla, raspberries and spice – cinnamon and nutmeg with some oak tannins. Tasted with a dried cranberry and the fruit notes disappear but the spices are enhanced as are the oak tannins. Tasted with a pecan and the vanilla and baking spices come forward with little or no fruit and less oak tannins.
Finish: Long and dry with oak and spice. The cranberry shortened the finish and made it dry with oak tannins dominant. The pecan made the finish longer and stronger with the oak and spice.
I am pairing this rye with a Rocky Patel Decade Robusto cigar. I find the smoke to have lots of hay and barnyard type flavors with a little cedar spice. I think that this might pair well with the spices of the rye. The rye does well with the cigar bringing out some coffee notes in the smoke. The smoke really makes the rye interesting. It enhances the fruit and adds a little orange zest note to the raspberry, as well as, enhancing the vanilla. A great pairing on the porch at the end of the day.
Photos Courtesy of Rosemary Miller