Reviews Whiskey

Woodford Reserve Rye Whiskey Review

Overall Score: 8.4 Woodford Reserve offers of a smooth tasting rye with a low rye mash bill for a whiskey that is great in cocktails.


  • Price: $32
  • Proof: 90.4 (45.2% ABV)
  • Type: Rye
  • Age: No Statement Age
  • Distillery: Woodford Reserve
  • Visit the distillery page at Woodford Reserve Rye


Nose: the nose is light for a rye but decently strong compared to Irish whiskeys, which I recently reviewed and serves as an easy comparison. There isn’t anything special in the nose.

Palate: Woodford Rye is very smooth with limited heat, especially for a rye whiskey. This is the best transition rye for newer whiskey drinker. Rye whiskeys often have additional spice and bolder flavors due to over 50% of the mash bill being rye grain, which is a requirement for whiskey labeling. Woodford Reserve only leverages 53% rye, which is relatively low (see Old Forester Rye that uses 65% at a similar price). I’m not a fan of Woodford Reserve Bourbon, but their rye offering is appreciated along with other bottles they distill. Woodford Rye is our top recommendation for whiskey cocktails, with a slight edge over Bulleit Rye. We lean to Old Forester Rye for neat whiskey drinking and more complex flavor.

Finish: the finish is low to moderate. The word simple comes to mind, but not in a bad way. There are subtle spice notes in the close, but it’s a clean and easy finish. The simplicity partnered with good spices make it a great whiskey for cocktails.


Overall Score: 8.4 (score reflects taste and price)

Woodford Reserve Rye offers a great rye whiskey for consumers that have limited experience with ryes. The 53% rye mash bill is low for a rye whiskey and is welcomed by those developing a palate or drinkers that do not frequently consume their whiskey neat. WF Rye has a smooth taste, subtle spice, and is great in cocktails. This is common whiskey if you’re collecting or hosting parties.

Degenerate Discussion

My ninth-grade gym teacher consistently shouted the same thing at us when we were being jackasses; he said, “If you don’t knock it off, I’m going to beat you like a red-headed stepchild.” The best part of this story isn’t the fact that he said this ridiculous comment; it’s the fact that it occurred in 2005. This seems like a comment a teacher could only get away with prior to the 90’s. The world has drastically changed in 15 years.

Listen, I’m not supporting the comment, I agree it shouldn’t be said and the Degenerates love our red-headed community, but we all need to relax a bit. The woke culture needs to go back to sleep, at least take a nap. In fairness to the teacher, many of the kids called him shit-leg due to a birthmark….how does this relate to Woodford Rye? Simple, if WF Rye is the stepchild to WF Bourbon, it should be compassionately loved and adored, not beaten. Cheers Degenerates.


You can find Woodford Reserve Rye on two Degenerate Top 10 list.

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