Nose: Fields of rye, citrus zest, floral sweetness, toffee, baking spices.
Taste: Black pepper, rye spiciness, baking, spices. toffee.
(For Maximus enjoyment, please play this short, yet mood setting video before proceeding to the review. Pssst, wait for the end)
One minute, there you are: strolling languidly through vast rolling fields of grain. The soft rush of the summer wind cools your forehead. Tranquility, serenity. You are home. You are finally home. Wait – what? In Holland? My home is in Holland.
Ok, maybe your home isn’t in the Netherlands, but this is where our whisky’s passport says it’s a citizen of. Besides, Whisky wouldn’t like about a thing like that. From the Zuidam Distillery, say hello to Millstone 100, Dutch Single Rye Whisky. Let me assure you, this isn’t an expat rye from Canada or the U.S; however, you would be forgiven for thinking so. Millstone 100 is called as such because it’s 100 Proof (50% abv); aged for 100 months; 100% rye and aged in 100% new American Oak. And yes, even 100% milled by Dutch windmills.
Pouring auburn in the glass, you can smell the fields of rye wafting under a summer’s day. There’s a greenness to that portion of the rye; however, there’s also the unmistakable rye bread notes in there as well. In between them, baking spices pop up, as well as the fresh citrusy wafts of lemons and oranges, sitting right next to a vase of fresh cut flowers. Sweet rich toffee also is in the mix. Being a 100 percent rye, you’d expect a blast of spices. They are here but they’re not overpowering or barging in. On the tongue; however, they’re at the head of the line. Black pepper, rye spices and baking spices are all there on this roll call. The toffee sweetness is there too tagging along but not interrupting what the rye has to say. When the whisky says goodbye, the finish is medium long. The heat leaves first, and the rye spiciness is the last to go leaving some nice, tingly memories.
Not to go all haughty slash hoi-poloi on you. Chances are, if this was offered to you, without you being told where it’s from, you’d more than likely say: “Hmmm – rye whisky.” Even when I tasted it, fully realizing it’s a Dutch Whisky, I did the Bugs-Bunny-Head-Shake”. Was there a misprint on the label? Nope. Were my glasses dirty? Maybe a little but nothing changed after I cleaned them. This is a delightful rye whisky that would still be as tasty even if you put a little sticky note that read “Canadian” or “American” over the “Dutch” part on the label. Enjoy it for what is and where it’s from because, at the end of the day, this is no run of the (wind) mill whisky. Cheers.