Does Basil Hayden make a rye?

Answered by Rodney Landry

Basil Hayden does produce a . However, it is important to note that Basil Hayden is primarily known for their whiskey. The rye whiskey produced by Basil Hayden is a special batch that is created using a unique aging technique known as “re-barreling.”

To begin the process of making Basil Hayden Rye, a traditional rye whiskey is aged for four years. This initial aging period allows the rye whiskey to develop its distinct flavor profile and characteristics. After the four-year mark, the whiskey is then transferred to newly charred quarter cask for an additional seven years of aging.

This “re-barreling” technique is rarely used in the whiskey industry, making Basil Hayden Rye quite unique. By aging the rye whiskey in smaller quarter cask barrels, it allows for increased interaction between the whiskey and the wood, resulting in a more pronounced and complex flavor profile.

The choice to use quarter cask barrels for the additional aging period is significant. These smaller barrels have a greater surface area to volume ratio compared to larger barrels, which accelerates the aging process. This means that the whiskey is able to extract more flavors and characteristics from the wood in a shorter amount of time.

The combination of the initial four years of aging in traditional barrels and the subsequent seven years of aging in quarter cask barrels results in a rye whiskey with a rich and nuanced flavor profile. The extended aging period allows the whiskey to develop deeper notes of spice, caramel, and oak, while still maintaining the smoothness and balance that Basil Hayden is known for.

Personal experience: I have had the opportunity to taste Basil Hayden Rye and it truly stands out among other rye whiskeys. The complexity of flavors, with hints of spice, sweetness, and oak, is truly remarkable. The smoothness of the whiskey is also noteworthy, as it goes down effortlessly without any harshness or burn.

To summarize, Basil Hayden does produce a rye whiskey that is aged using a unique “re-barreling” technique. This process involves aging the rye whiskey for four years in traditional barrels, followed by an additional seven years in smaller quarter cask barrels. The result is a rye whiskey with a complex flavor profile and a smooth finish.