In recent years rye has become quite popular to the point that rye goes missing from the shelves for period of time; e.g. Wild Turkey Rye. Heaven Hill only mash's rye twice a month. MGP/LDI pumps out a good bit of rye as do the Canadians and I think they'll have to continue to do so.
Highwest Distillery started back in 2004 by David Perkins and back then he was sourcing rye and bourbon from some pretty good sources.
I recently was able to acquire 9 bottles of HW Rocky Mountain Rye 21 year (Batch 10). While not necessarily a fan of uber old bourbons, older rye's can be quite good and this rye offering is no exception. From the Highwest website, they state that Rocky Mountain Rye "...is very rare whiskey aged in USED barrels. All were aged on the
lower three tiers of the rickhouse. Mash bill is 53% rye, 37% corn, 10%
barley malt." Technically, this is not a rye whiskey since used cooperage was employed and Highwest doesn't market this whiskey as such but says it's "whiskey distilled from rye mash". Fine by me.
For the age one would expect a deeper color but this whiskey is a light golden color reminiscent of low proof Scotch. The nose is rye forward with mild spice, mint and a nice oak backbone. Entry is soft and flavorful with a profile consisting of oak, cinnamon, nut and a touch of anise. Mid palate is somewhat candied with a cream finish. The whiskey really hangs on the palate offering up a very pleasant finish of sweet vanilla and cereal grain that lasts quite some time.
Truthfully, this is a very approachable whiskey, easy to drink with a brilliant flavor profile. This is not a one dimensional whiskey but offers layers of flavors from start to finish.
I hate to say it but I don't think you'll find these on your local retail shelf. A quick check and I found one bottle on the German Ebay site for $244.