Waldviertler Pure Rye Malt, 41%

I think I have begun most of my recent post with ‘So, …’, which means I have to diversify. Also in terms of what I’m reviewing, and in this case it’s an Austrian rye malt of undisclosed age. It’s probably young, but it has a nice color to it.

Anyway, this might be my first Austrian whisky, booze from the birth country of Hitler, as I’m often reminded of by my Jewish friend DSA, who currently lives there. All nonsense aside, rye malt from Austria.

The distillery has been operating since 1995, but the farm where it’s based has been around for 110 years. The last decade they also have something called Whisky Adventure World, which hopefully sounds more awful than it is.

European rye spirits are a bit risky. Especially when coming from a company that also distills all kinds of fruit liqueurs. Generally I consider stills to have some kind of memory since most whiskies I’ve had from stills that normally have fruits in them are hideous.

I’ve tried some rye whisky spirits from France, Belgium and Holland. Apart from the ones from Zuidam they’ve not been good. There might have been some from Germany and Sweden, but I don’t remember those.

Image from Whiskybase

Image from Whiskybase

The nose is spirity and rather sharp. A quite heavy spiciness that is typical for rye spirits. The oak influence is rather heavy, to an almost Armagnac like level. A hint of wet oak and a crisp hint, almost like there’s some mint in it.

The palate is much lighter than the nose with a hint of light fruits and chili powder. There are hint of dry spices and apple cores (including the bitterness of the seeds).

The finish is smoother and more crisp. Lots of rye flavors and some oak. Quite well balanced.

What an interesting dram. Not a great sipper, but I can see this stuff working wonders around a campfire. It’s rather strong and masculine, with quite a lot of rough edges, although it’s not completely unrefined. The hints of rye, spices and fruit are nicely matched by the oak, although that last one is on its way to overpower the spirit.

Not overly complex, but rather drinkable.


Roggenhof die Waldviertler, Pure Rye Malt, 41%

Thanks to Jon Beach of Fiddler’s for the sample!


About Sjoerd de Haan-Kramer

I'm very interested in booze, with a focus on whisky. I like to listen to loads of music and play lots of Magic: the Gathering, and board games too. I'm married to Anneke, have two daughters Ot and Cato, a son Moos and a cat called Kikker (which means Frog, in Dutch). I live in Krommenie, The Netherlands.
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