Educational Articles

High West Distillery’s “Rendezvous Rye”

4.26.10

One of our favorite cocktails is the classic Manhattan. The original recipe called for straight rye whiskey. As luck would have it, we have just discovered a superb rye whiskey produced by the High West Distillery and Saloon in Park City Utah.   The owner and whiskey maker, David Perkins combined his skills as a biochemist, along with his passion for fine spirits and quality dining, and established High West in 2007, making it the first legal distillery in Utah since the 1870’s. High West is located at 7,000 feet in the Wasatch Range of the Rocky Mountains in Old Town Park City.  The Distillery and Saloon are located in a Victorian style pyramid house built in 1914 and is listed on the National Historic Register.

High West’s “Rendezvous Rye” is a stunning blend of two “straight” rye whiskies that David found back East. David married the rich aromatic qualities of the 16-year-old blend with the bold, spicy properties found in the 6 years old blend.  He says it honors the way rye whiskey used to be made, with high rye content and full, uncompromised flavor. Rendezvous Rye was rated 95 points by Malt Advocate and named one of their “Top Ten New Whiskies of 2008”.  Rendezvous Rye earned a “Double Gold” Medal at the 2008 San Francisco World Spirits Competition, and 93 points in the 2009 edition of Jim Murray’s Whiskey Bible.  For more information on High West Distillery and Saloon, go to their website, www.highwestdistillery.com.

Sazerac Recipe:  In the March 31, 2010 issue of The Wine Spectator, Senior Features Editor, Jack Bettridge profiles the origins and history of the Sazerac in an article entitled “Sins of the Sazerac” and provides the following classic recipe:

“Fill an old-fashioned glass with ice, or place it in the freezer for an hour.  In a separate glass of the same ilk, muddle sugar together with bitters and a drop or two of water.  Add rye or brandy, and ice, and stir for at least 15 seconds.  Empty the first glass of its ice, and add absinthe or pastis.  Swirl to coat sides.  Reserve excess.  Strain spirits and bitters into the coated glass with a julep strainer. Twist the lemon over the glass and do whatever you want with the peel.”