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Michter's US*1 Barrel Strength Rye (2022), Old Fitzgerald 17 year old Bottled in Bond (Spring 2022), & More [New Releases]

Michter's US*1 Barrel Strength Rye (2022), Old Fitzgerald 17 year old Bottled in Bond (Spring 2022), & More [New Releases]

March 11, 2022 –––––– Julia Higgins, , , ,

Once you've amassed a collection of whisky, how are you going to show it off? These whisky lovers have dedicated entire rooms to their collections, modeling them after a library, speakeasy, and 20th century hotel. Get started on your own whisky room with these tips.

As for new whiskies to add to your stash, there's a wide variety out this week. Michter's has unveiled the 2022 edition of its US1* barrel strength rye, Heaven Hill adds to the Old Fitzgerald lineup with a 17 year old bourbon, Stranahan's and Balcones have new versions of familiar single malts, and Barrell Craft Spirits continues its series of blended straight bourbons with Batch 032. Read on for full details.

Michter's US*1 Barrel Strength Rye (2022)

Style: Straight rye

Origin: Kentucky

Age: Not stated

ABV: 55.8%

Price: $100

Release: March 2022

Availability: Limited

Need to know:

As with previous releases of Barrel Strength Rye, this whiskey is bottled as a single barrel product, so while the average proof is 111.6%, it varies from bottle to bottle.

Whisky Advocate says:

When we last reviewed Michter's Barrel Strength Rye in 2019, it scored a sound 92points. The whiskey then took a two-year hiatus before returning last March, and is now back again this year. Michter's stokes some pretty serious fans, so it's safe to say this limited edition won't be on shelves for long.

Old Fitzgerald 17 year old Bottled in Bond (Spring 2022)

Style: Straight bourbon

Origin: Kentucky

Age: 17 year old

ABV: 50%

Price: $185

Release: March 2022

Availability: Limited

Need to know:

The latest release of Old Fitzgerald Bottled in Bond is a 17 year old bourbon distilled in 2004, with barrels pulled from three floors of Heaven Hill Distillery's rickhouse V.

Whisky Advocate says:

Given that the minimum age requirement for bottled in bond whiskey is just 4 years old, a 17 year old iteration is rare, and this Spring 2022 release is indeed Old Fitzgerald's oldest to date (a 16 year old version debuted in 2020). Last year, the brand's Fall 2021 11 year old Bottled in Bond came in at No. 16 on our Top 20.

Stranahan's Diamond Peak (2022 Release)

Style: American single malt

Origin: Colorado

Age: Not stated

ABV: 45%

Price: $80

Release: March 2022

Availability: Limited

Need to know:

Stranahan's brings back its annual release of Diamond Peak American single malt but with an added twist. Whereas previous releases were limited blends of four types of barley aged in new charred oak, this relaunch version will also feature a different finish each year. For 2022, the whiskey was aged between two and seven years before being finished in Bushmills Irish single malt casks for up to four additional years.

Whisky Advocate says:

A single malt finished in single malt barrels? We've heard of American single malt brands blending their own make with single malt from overseas, like Virginia Distillery Co.'s VHW line, but this is a different approach entirely. We look forward to trying this whiskey and seeing how else American single malt distillers can innovate within the style.

Barrell Bourbon (Batch 032)

Style: Blend of straight bourbons

Origin: Multiple (TN, KY, IN)

Age: 5 year old

ABV: 57.67%

Price: $90

Release: March 2022

Availability: 36,000 bottles

Need to know:

Batch 032 of Barrell bourbon comes from whiskeys aged 5, 6, 7, and 10 years. The barrels chosen showed a mixture of tropical, woody, and spice-driven profiles.

Whisky Advocate says:

Every batch of Barrell bourbon is different but they're all carefully blended and usually earn high scores. Most recently, Batch 029 scored 94 points. Our upcoming Spring issue, which hits newsstands on March 22, features a pair of reviews for two other Barrell products: the 16 year old Gold Label bourbon as well as New Year Cask Strength Bourbon (2022 Edition).

Balcones Mirador (2022)

Style: American single malt

Origin: Texas

Age: Not stated

ABV: 54.8%

Price: $80

Release: March 2022

Availability: Limited

Need to know:

In contrast to other single malts in the Balcones lineup, Mirador is aged entirely in used casks. The whiskeys within the final bottling range from 3 to 5 years old. Because Mirador is aged in used casks (none of the others are 100% aged in used casks), the whiskey's flavor is inherently softer, per the distillery.

Whisky Advocate says:

Balcones has quite the robust single malt lineup, with annual releases like Mirador—along with Staff Selection, Rum Cask Finished, and Peated—joining the permanent roster of Classic Edition and Lineage single malts.

Blue Run High Rye Bourbon (Batch 2)

Style: Straight bourbon

Origin: Kentucky

Age: Not stated

ABV: 55.5%

Price: $100

Release: March 2022

Availability: 60,000 bottles

Need to know:

After an initial release in October 2021, Blue Run is bringing its High Rye bourbon back. Contract distilled by Jim Rutledge at Castle & Key, the whiskey has the same mashbill as the October release of 65% yellow corn, 30% rye, 5% malted barley. It comes from 232 barrels, and carries a slightly higher price point, up from $90.

Whisky Advocate says:

Blue Run has quickly become one of the most coveted names in American whiskey, thanks to the wealth of knowledge that Rutledge brings to the table from his 50-plus years in the industry, most notably as former Four Roses master distiller. We have previously scored their 13 year old straight bourbon 91 pointsand their Straight Golden Rye 90 points, so seems likely that the High Rye is also of high quality.

Four Gate Saint Charente (Batch 18)

Style: Finished bourbon

Origin: Kentucky

Age: 7 year old

ABV: 59.6%

Price: $199

Release: March 2022

Availability: 2,365 bottles; GA, IN, KY, LA, TN, TX and select online retailers

Need to know:

This barrel proof bourbon from Kentucky was made using a mashbill of 75% corn, 21% rye, and 4% malted barley, aged for 7 years, and finished in cognac casks. It's named after the Charente River, which runs through Cognac, France.

Whisky Advocate says:

Since its debut whiskey in 2019, Four Gate has been exploring barrel finishing through its small batch releases. Some are split stave finished which use barrels made of alternating charred and toasted staves. Many have been double finished, like its Outer Loop using both orange curaçao and gin barrels (92 points) and Andalusia Key finished in barrels that previously held oloroso and dark rum (93 points). In the case of this release, we'd expect the cognac barrel to impart apple and raisin flavors. All of the Four Gate releases our tasting panel has reviewed to date have scored 90 and higher.

Nelson Brothers Classic Bourbon

Style: Blend of straight bourbons

Origin: Multiple

Age: Not stated

ABV: 46.65%

Price: $37

Release: Spring 2022

Availability: Nationwide

Nelson Brothers Reserve Bourbon

Style: Blend of straight bourbons

Origin: Multiple

Age: Not stated

ABV: 53.9%

Price: $60

Release: March 2022

Availability: Nationwide

Need to know:

Nelson's Green Brier Distillery is introducing this new line of whiskey, named after brothers Charlie and Andy Nelson, who resurrected their family company in 2009. Classic and Reserve are blends of high rye bourbons, and will join Green Brier's Tennessee whiskey (which scored 88 points) and Belle Meade bourbon in the full range. The inaugural release features whiskeys distilled in Tennessee, Kentucky, and Indiana, though source and blending proportion for each batch may vary.

Whisky Advocate says:

We've kept an eye on Nelson's Green Brier ever since its Belle Meade Reserve Cask Strength landed at No. 10 on our 2018 Top 20. While that whiskey was sourced from MGP, it's common practice for upstart distillers to move from sourcing whiskey to blending sourced whiskey with their own make. Some may eventually transition fully to bottling their own spirit, while others, like Smooth Ambler in West Virginia, may continue to source and blend while also distilling. There are many options for today's craft distillers, with barrel selection and adept blending important skills unto themselves.

Alberta Premium

Style: Rye

Origin: Canada

Age: Not Stated

ABV: 40%

Price: $25

Release: March 2022

Availability: Nationally

Need to know:

Alberta Premium is distilled from 100% rye grown by local Calgary, Alberta farmers and is now available in the U.S. for the first time. The blended rye, produced by Beam Suntory-owned Alberta Distillers based in Alberta, Canada, is aged for at least 5 years and will start to show up on shelves across the U.S. this month.

Whisky Advocate says:

While this is the first time that the flagship Alberta Premium release has hit shelves stateside, the distillery tested the waters in late 2020 by releasing a limited amount of its Alberta Premium Cask Strength rye in the U.S. That bottling clocked in at 66% ABV and sold for quite a bit more ($70) than the standard rye. It earned 88 points in the Buying Guide.