Basil Hayden Caribbean Reserve Rye

Basil Hayden's Caribbean Reserve Rye
Overall Rating:
(8.34 / 10)

Nose: Sweet rich molasses notes are instantly noticeable and quite dominating. Inhaling deeply reveals trace amounts of oak, vanilla, and random touches of blueberries. Due to the low proof and the fact that the molasses scent is so dominating, it would be hard to discern what this is if handed to you blindly. The nose shows that it’s clearly not rum, but it also doesn’t come across as a rye either. It’s a non-traditional nose that’s surprisingly quite funky and fun.

Palate: An overly sweet molasses note hits first and comes across as slightly artificial. Like the nose, molasses dominates, but is now mingled with wet oak, baking spices, and a hint of vanilla. The sip’s mouthfeel is extremely thin, and lacks the sweet mouth coating stickiness that the nose lulled you into believing was coming. The limiting factor in the palate is the artificial taste of the molasses which comes across as more of an additive than what you’d typically find in a barrel finished whiskey – not exactly what I’m looking for when I sip a whiskey.

Finish: A simple combination of oak, vanilla, and molasses. The vanilla quickly fades away followed by the oak a little while later. The molasses, however, lightly lingers for an incredibly long time. It’s surprising how long the finish lasts considering this is only an 80 proof whiskey. What the palate lacks, the finish helps end on a higher note.

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