Comments on bourbonv`s review of Leopold Bros. Maryland Style Rye

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Comments on bourbonv`s review of Leopold Bros. Maryland Style Rye

Unread postby forumadmin » Tue Jul 17, 2012 3:56 pm

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Unread postby bourbonv » Tue Jul 17, 2012 3:56 pm

I think Gary also found this bottle quite good and I am hoping for review from him soon.
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Re:

Unread postby MacinJosh » Tue Jul 17, 2012 4:08 pm

bourbonv wrote:I think Gary also found this bottle quite good and I am hoping for review from him soon.


I think I somehow missed out on tasting this one last weekend. :( :( :(
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Re: Comments on bourbonv`s review of Leopold Bros. Maryland Style Rye

Unread postby gillmang » Tue Jul 17, 2012 5:13 pm

Just catching up with this. Mike very kindly gave me the bottle in the middle of the evening and I should have put it down on the table but forgot in the general crush and commotion.

Some years ago, there was a discussion here about what made Maryland rye "Maryland". I offered my ideas. Todd of Leopold Distillers participated and appreciated my contribution. Later, he distilled a rye in the Maryland style, a recreation obviously as he felt it should be, and only recently via Mike was able to get a bottle to me.

I think it is first rate in that it is soft to the palate, spicy from the rye (grainy not minty or piny), and with a big strawberry fruitiness I just love. There is some "new make" element to it but it blends well with the other components. I believe it is under 2 years old since it is not labeled a straight rye, but rather just rye whiskey, but maybe I am wrong.

It is excellent and in time will make I believe a great straight rye, i.e., it needs a few more years in barrel.

The original Maryland ryes I tasted, just two or three, did have a fruity-like taste and Todd captured it perfectly. I remember Chuck stating that the fruitiness might have come from sherry or another flavouring addition since Maryland rye was often a blend, and even some blends of straight rye sold in Maryland used such a substance to marry the whiskeys. (Melrose was one). So he may be right but I'd have thought that perhaps even that was an emulation of an older tradition where the taste was in the whiskey without addition of any kind. That could have been produced from estery top yeasts for example and Maryland, being English-settled in part, probably made British ales many of which can taste fruity from esters produced by top yeasts. Think too of cider and applejack...

In Todd's case, he got the effect from allowing the ferment to undergo an intentional bacterial secondary ferment, I believe using acetic acid bacteria. (I should add, the whiskey isn't sour in the least, au contraire).

Soon I will be on the West Coast with access to large-inventory stores and will look to buy some. But thanks much again Todd and Mike for arranging delivery of this bottle to me.

Gary
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Re: Comments on bourbonv`s review of Leopold Bros. Maryland Style Rye

Unread postby Leopold » Tue Jul 17, 2012 11:33 pm

gillmang wrote:The original Maryland ryes I tasted, just two or three, did have a fruity-like taste and Todd captured it perfectly.....

........In Todd's case, he got the effect from allowing the ferment to undergo an intentional bacterial secondary ferment, I believe using acetic acid bacteria. (I should add, the whiskey isn't sour in the least, au contraire).
Gary


I glad you and Mr. Veach enjoyed it. I'm surprised, actually. I thought that the upcoming BIB would be the only one you'd care for.

The reaction to make that strawberry note is acetic acid and isobutanol (isobutanol is formed in carbohydrate fermentation) combining with oxygen in the barrel to form Isobutyl Acetate, which smells and tastes like strawberries. It was fun coming to the conclusion that I'd use naturally produced acetic acid bacteria to create the strawberry note, rather than added sherry or fruit or whatnot. I can tell you that my assistant and I were quite pleased checking a barrel at about 18 months to find the strawberry note that we only theoretically (at that point, at least) trying to create. A bit of a eureka moment, if you will.

We do our best to target specific esters and phenols in our whiskies, rather than just making alcohol and oak. It's very nice to see that you found the notes the we were trying to create.

The new plant we're building will have a 8,000 square foot barrelhouse, so we'll really be able to make quite a bit of BIB and 10's and 20 yo's. I think that you'll both prefer the BIB to the NAS Maryland Rye. We'll see soon enough. Cheers!
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Re: Comments on bourbonv`s review of Leopold Bros. Maryland Style Rye

Unread postby gillmang » Wed Jul 18, 2012 8:04 am

Thanks for this Todd, it all sounds great. I see now that the acetic acid bacteria did their work in the aging phase, not as part of a secondary fermentation of the mash.

Please keep us posted viz. when the BIB will be available. All the best.

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Re: Comments on bourbonv`s review of Leopold Bros. Maryland Style Rye

Unread postby bourbonv » Wed Jul 18, 2012 10:12 am

Todd,
I assumed this was four years old since it does not have an age statement on the label and a product has to be four years old to not have one. Is Gary right that this is a two year old product? If so how did you get away without the age statement?
Mike Veach
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Re: Comments on bourbonv`s review of Leopold Bros. Maryland Style Rye

Unread postby Leopold » Wed Jul 18, 2012 10:39 am

Mr. Gilman.... it's the acetic acid produced by the bacteria, not the acetic acid bacteria itself that causes the esterification. When you have an organic acid in an alcohol solution and you add oxygen, you get esters over time.

Mr. Veach, the requirement for an age statement is only for Straight Whiskey. If it's not labeled as Straight, there isn't a requirement to put the age on the bottle. This is a very common misperception, even among distillers. Strange regulation, in that you only have to put an age statement on a whiskey if it's between 2 and 4 years, and labelled as Straight.
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Re: Comments on bourbonv`s review of Leopold Bros. Maryland Style Rye

Unread postby gillmang » Wed Jul 18, 2012 10:50 am

Thanks Todd, got it, and please call me Gary.I recall reading that wooden fermenters leached a certain bacteria in the mash which gave a certain character which became lost with advent of metal. Is this similar?

Gary

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Re: Comments on bourbonv`s review of Leopold Bros. Maryland Style Rye

Unread postby Leopold » Wed Jul 18, 2012 11:04 am

Yes. Identical, actually. We use cypress fermenters. In my opinion, the lack of near-sterility is what made American whiskey great. When you push for homogenization and repeatability, the first thing you do is make the fermentation as sterile and repeatable as possible. You miss out on all the great flavors that comes from the fact that the malt portion is never boiled, and therefore has live bacteria on it. Encouraging bacterial growth without losing yield or gaining off-flavors is the difficult part.
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Re: Comments on bourbonv`s review of Leopold Bros. Maryland Style Rye

Unread postby gillmang » Wed Jul 18, 2012 12:18 pm

Fascinating. I maintain that the original Yellowstone had a strawberry-like character and I guess I know why now. It was less evident in the more aged version (Mellow Mash), you needed a bottle of the regular one, Yellowstone Bourbon, to see it. I've had the odd bottle since then which has survived since that time, but they never seemed to show the taste, either the bottles were affected by long storage or perhaps the quality lifted off (vaporized) over time. But I know it had it, I don't forget such things.

Let us know please when that BIB comes out, that's a must!

Gary
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Re: Comments on bourbonv`s review of Leopold Bros. Maryland Style Rye

Unread postby bourbonv » Wed Jul 18, 2012 1:29 pm

Todd,
You are indeed correct. I was thinking "Straight Whiskey" and I should have noticed the lack of the term on the bottle. In any case it is a very good whiskey and I believe the low entery proof has some of the blame for making me think it was 4yo whiskey. It tastes more mature than the age would have you believe. Very good job with the whiskey.
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