I enjoy the 95/5 MGP rye profile. It’s something I often reach for because, to put it plainly, it’s pleasant. The Deadwood Rye Whiskey is a young low-proof delivery of that profile which displays some of the characteristics we expect, like dill, but brings new notes that don’t tend to show up in older oakier versions: orchard fruit.

Deadwood Rye Whiskey

Over time, the oak and spirit often work together to bring out some dark fruity notes, but when it’s young and the spirit and oak haven’t worked together very long the fruit is different. It’s a lighter style of fruit that’s more apples and pears than dried strawberries and cherries. And then there are the rest of the notes that can spring up, which we’ll chat about in the rye whiskey review.

Deadwood Rye Whiskey Review: Details and Tasting Notes

In Proof and Wood Ventures’ Words:

Frontier legend Wild Bill Hickok was famously shot dead while playing poker in Deadwood. His four cards showing were two aces and two eights, forever after known as the Deadman’s hand. The fifth card remains a mystery. We raise our glasses to Bill and that colorful time in history.

Deadwood Rye Details (price, mash bill, cask type, ABV, etc.)

Details (price, mash bill, cask type, ABV, etc.)

Region: Indiana, USA

Distiller: MGP
Bottler: Proof and Wood Ventures
Mash Bill: 95% Rye, 5% Malted Barley
Cask: New Charred Oak
Age: 2 Years
ABV: 41.5%

Price: $27*

Tasting Notes

Golden honey

Young, lively and surprisingly sweet with notes of dill, fresh wood, honey, dried orchard fruit and bits of anise, clove and pear juice.

Fruity and spicy it rolls through with notes of dill, honey, vanilla, dried orchard fruit, baking spice and some hay-like earthiness.

Medium -> Dill, honey and fruit.

Not fully balanced, med-light body and a light watery feel.

Bottled at 41.5%, aged 2 years, priced around $27 and is fine as a sipper. But where it truly shines is in cocktails that benefit from an extra bit of spice.

Deadwood Rye Whiskey Review: Overall and Score

Sweet and spicy, it’s a young low proof MGP rye and it shows. The Aroma comes through with a punch of dill that’s backed by a delivery of fruit and spice; Palate continues that spicy fruity profile but with an even bigger dill punch; Finish comes through fairly quickly as a lighter copy of the palate. As it opens the dill becomes more prominent and a light caramel note shows up.

Releases like this Deadwood Rye Whiskey are quite common today, and getting more so as aged stocks continue to dwindle in size and increase in price. These young MGP 95/5 ryes are tasty and they’re fine on their own, but my favorite thing to with them is use them in cocktails like Sazeracs and Old Fashioneds. The big punchy dill adds a nice additional layer to the drink.

SCORE: 79/100 (C+)

*Disclosure: This Deadwood Rye Whiskey was graciously sent to me by the company for the purposes of this review. The views, opinions, and tasting notes are 100% my own.

Deadwood Rye Whiskey Review

Deadwood Rye Whiskey Review 27
  • Nose - 79
  • Palate - 79
  • Finish - 79
  • Balance, Body & Feel - 79

Deadwood Rye Whiskey Review Summary

Deadwood Rye Whiskey is bottled at 41.5%, aged 2 years, priced around $27 and is fine as a sipper. But where it truly shines is in cocktails that benefit from an extra bit of spice.

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