If you still have doubts about the rising popularity of American whiskey, then results from a recently concluded event might be just enough to convince you otherwise. According to a panel of judges, what many considered an underdog entry was a cut above the rest. Therefore, for those eager to experience this winning blend, grab yourself a bottle of 15 Stars First West Fine Aged Rye whiskey.

For those like us curious about the label’s origin, a quick check online reveals the name is a tribute to Kentucky becoming the 15th state in America. Behind the First West Fine Aged Rye whiskey are Rick Johnson and Ricky Johnson – a father-son tandem who are willing to try unique methods to craft their spirits.

This victory is outstanding given the expression was up against some of the biggest names in the industry. An insight into the judging process tells us a blind taste test was in place to determine the Best in Show at the New York Wine & Spirits Competition.

The only information available during the sampling phase was the style of spirit, proof, and category. Entries that earn Double Gold medals during the preliminaries then move on to the finals and you all know that the First West Rye Fine Aged Rye whiskey was awarded the coveted distinction.

Furthermore, 15 Stars also won the Best Bourbon with its blended Sherry Cask Finished Bourbon. These awards speak volumes about the quality of the spirits in question. To hype up your expectations, tasting notes of the First West Rye Fine Aged Rye whiskey declare aromas of spice and floral dried fruit.

A sip delivers notes of tobacco, honey, herbal tea, cinnamon, ginger, green tea, lavender, and dried apricot. It then leaves you with hints of light caramel alongside ground pepper and rye spice with a long finish. A bottle of 15 Stars First West Rye Fine Aged Rye whiskey retails for $89.

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Images courtesy of 15 Stars