When drinking Colonel E.H. Taylor Rye, I ask myself, what could make this rye any better? Had it been aged longer, the oaky notes from barrel maturation would easily trample all over the subtle aromatic nose. Had it been age any less, that undertone of oaky sweetness would be missing. At first, CEHT Rye tasted almost underwhelming, but that’s really the beauty behind this drink. It’s subtle, complex, and draws you in. This has quickly become a favorite rye of mine.
CEHT Rye is brighter and lighter on the nose by comparison to MGP ryes. The nose is light and floral. The oaky vanilla sweetness is so damn subtle that it adds a nice layer beneath the floral notes. Dusty, with zest, and a touch of caramel—it’s a lovely complex nose. On the palate, it starts with soft caramel sweetness. That flavour evolves rapidly with high peppery spice, lemon zest, and this complex swirl of vanilla, and cinnamon spice. The finish takes on deep dark peppery notes that are intense without going over-the-top.
Ryes have been a growing segment of the American whisky market. Early ryes were soft, light, and smooth. CEHT Rye is many of these things, but it’s a subtly complex drink with the right balance of sweetness. While I quite enjoy MGP ryes, Buffalo Trace’s Colonel E.H. Taylor is a big winner for me in this category.