Category Archives: Catoctin Creek

Jewish Whisky Company’s Whisky Jewbilee 2012 event in NYC — it’s coming Thursday, October 25th!

Hosted by the Jewish Whisky Company and Single Cask Nation, the first annual charitable Whisky Jewbilee is fast approaching!!

For those unable to attend WhiskyFest NYC this year (due to it landing on Shabbat), this is your chance to taste some of Scotland, Ireland, and America’s finest whiskies.

Kosher catering by Ari White of Gemstone Catering, food under Star-K.

Click this link for more information and to buy tickets

This charitable whisky event engagement is limited to 250 attendees and is your chance to taste some fantastic whiskies (as shown below):

Distilleries and brands at the event, while not limited to, are listed below:

  • Arran
  • Balcones
  • BenRiach
  • Benromach
  • Catoctin Creek
  • Chieftain’s Range
  • Corsair
  • FEW Spirits
  • GlenDronach
  • Glenrothes
  • Gordon MacPhail
  • Highland Park
  • High West
  • Hirsch Selection
  • Hudson Real American Whiskeys
  • Kilchoman
  • Koval
  • Old Potrero
  • Single Cask Nation
  • Slieve Foy
  • Smokehead
  • Smooth Ambler
  • …plus more to be announced!!

The pouring list is still being developed, however, here is a preliminary list of whiskies:

10 years old
14 years old

Balcones True Blue Whisky
Balcones Single Malt
Balcones Brimstone Smoked Whisky

The BenRiach
10 years old
12 years old
16 years old
20 years old
Dark Rum Cask
PX Cask
**Alistair Walker is scheduled to be at the Whisky Jewbilee!

Catoctin Creek
Roundstone Rye
Mosby’s Spirit
Watershed Gin

Chieftain’s Range
Craigellachie 21 years old
Glen Keith 17 years old

Corsair Wry Moon Unaged Rye Whiskey
Corsair Triple Smoke

FEW Spirits
FEW Rye Whiskey
FEW Bourbon Whiskey
“Special cask selections”

12 years old
15 years old
18 years old
33 years old
**Alistair Walker is scheduled to be at the Whisky Jewbilee!

The Glenrothes
Select Reserve
Alba Reserve
1995 Vintage
1988 Vintage
Editors Cask
…maybe others
**Ronnie Cox is scheduled to be at the Whisky Jewbilee!

Gordon and MacPhail
Benromach 10 years old
Benromach 30 years old
Highland Park 24 years old
Old Pulteney 21 years old
Scapa 11 years old
Tormore 15 years old

Highland Park
Highland Park 12 years old
Highland Park 15 years old
Highland Park 18 years old
Highland Park 30 years old

High West
Double Rye
Rendezvous Rye
Son of Bourye
Campfire Whiskey
Silver Whiskey – Western Oat
American Prairie Reserve Bourbon
“Something special”

Hirsch and Slieve Foy
Hirsch Small Batch Reserve
Slieve Foy Irish 8 years old Single Malt

Hudson Real American Whiskeys
New York Corn Whiskey
Baby Bourbon
Four Grain Bourbon
Hudson Single Malt
Manhattan Rye Whiskey
Half Moon Orchard Gin

Jewish Whisky Company’s Single Cask Nation™
Arran 12 years old
Kilchoman 4 years old
BenRiach Heavily Peated 17 years old

Machir Bay
100% Islay (2nd Edition)

Koval Raksi Millet
Koval Midwest Wheat
Koval Rye Chicago
Lion’s Pride Rye
Lion’s Pride Dark Rye
Lion’s Pride Dark Millet
Lion’s Pride 47th Ward
Koval Rose Hip liqueur
Koval Chrysanthemum Honey liqueur
Koval Ginger liqueur
Koval Coffee liqueur
Koval Jasmin liqueur

Old Potrero
Old Potrero 18th Cetury Rye
Old Potrero Straight Rye


Smooth Ambler
Smooth Ambler Yearling
Smooth Ambler Bourbon
Smooth Ambler Rye
This is a charitable event with a portion of the evening’s proceeds being donated to charity.

Catoctin Creek Roundstone Rye – Cask Proof!


Virginia, USA – 58%ABV – $65 – **KOSHER CERTIFIED RYE WHISKY**

We’re about to journey into the land of FUN…  “What kind of fun?” you might ask…  Single cask, cask strength rye whisky from Catoctin Creek.  (Yes, Catoctin Creek spell “whisky” the same way most of the world does; without the “E.”)  For a whisky geek like me, I think this is a $hit ton-o-fun!

So, what’s the make up of this concoction from Catoctin?  Well, you may have heard the term “mash bill” before.  If not, a “mash bill” is basically a mixture of grain(s) that distillers use when making a beer (or wash) that will then get distilled into spirit.

As far as rye goes, most rye whiskeys are made from a mash bill that has about 51% rye grain (the legal minimum to call said whiskey a “rye” whiskey) and the balance is often rounded out with corn, wheat and barley.  Some distillers use a higher percentage of rye grain but Catoctin Creek is one of a handful of distilleries that use 100% rye grain.  What’s more is Catoctin uses only organic certified rye grain.

Zero the Kosher Kat approves of this whisky!

What’s more-more is, even though the owners are not Jewish, Catoctin Creek one of a very few American distilleries that have their whiskeys kosher certified.

Here’s a video regarding Catoctin Creek and kosher certification:

Now, on to the tasting!

On the nose — Very youthful and a touch one dimensional in scent at first but after just a minute or so, it opens up.  I mean it *really* opens up.

Fresh spring-scented fabric softener sheets notes mix with very light key lime pie filling.

Rye and citrus notes to be sure but I also detect pencil shavings and school-house pencil end erasers.

It’s evident the spirit character shines with not too much wood influence – an interesting play on rye whiskey compared to most brands out there – unique.

Fresh granny smith apples and apple sauce (home made, no sugar added, no cinnamon added).

Rye bread, lightly toasted with fresh, un-melted butter.

The addition of water seems to bring out more of the springy floral element but doesn’t change much else.

On the mouth — Aggressive attack filled with orange jujubes and baby aspirin notes.  No, these are more than notes – pretty damn spot on (especially with the jujubes).

Spring-like again in flavor but with a focus on woodsy leaves from last autumn and new growth chutes.

Great mouth feel and, though aggressive, not really “hot” in any way.  It doesn’t need water but I’m going to add a bit any way.  Just for fun.

Adding water makes the mouthfeel massive & thick (like drinking Lou Ferrigno).

There is also a touch of spice now; right along the sides of the tongue.

**Caution, do not add too much water here.  Initially I brought the whisky down to 50% ABV but in a 2nd sampling I brought it down to 54% (or so) and that was just right.  Too much water and some of the flavors become elusive/shy.  Just a touch brings out the mouthfeel but keeps the flavors generally intact.

Finish — A long, citrusy finish.

In sum —  When going into this rye, forget what you know about the spirit in general.  This will be a new experience.

I really enjoy their standard 40% ABV version of this rye whisky but tasting this in cask proof makes this whisky shine like a rye diamond.  A wonderful springtime whisky.  Fine whisky – kudos to the Catoctinians on this one!

Special thanks to Scott H for the sample!

Catoctin Creek – Mosby’s Spirit & Roundstone Rye – organic & kosher (not for Passover)!

What’s that?  Oh, you haven’t heard of Catoctin Creek?  Wait, are you serious??

Actually, I believe it.  And I wouldn’t expect many to have heard about these folks.  Well, things are going to change, my friends!  Catoctin Creek is surely the new kid on the block (please, no Donnie Wahlberg jokes, people).  They started in 2009 and are the first distillery to open in their county since Prohibition.  The brain child of Scott & Becky Harris, I think these folks have something quite good on their hands.  And this something is only going to grow!

For my tree-huggers out there, all of Catoctin Creek’s products are certified organic.  And for my Jews in the audience, their products are kosher certified (Star K).  Oh, and for my booze lovers on the other side of the computer or smartphone screen, their whiskies are really good and… award winning!

Sadly, as it stands now, Catoctin Creek spirits are currently only available in California, Virginia, Maryland & Washington DC.  In speaking with Scott Harris, however, he told me that they are currently working on wider distribution.

Update – Schneider’s of Capitol Hill will ship Catoctin Creek nationwide (USA).

Rather than put it all on the post here, to learn more about Catoctin Creek, click here.

Now, let me learn you on these whiskies.  First, I’ll review their “Mosby’s Spirit” which is unmatured rye spirit, straight off the still then diluted to 40% ABV.  The second is their “Roundstone Rye” which is their “Mosby’s Spirit” aged in new oak barrels for an unspecified amount of time.  Both are 100% rye with no other grain influence.

Mosby’s Spirit – Virginia, USA – Awarded a bronze medal by the American Distilling Institute – 40%ABV – 750ml – $39

On the nose No doubt about – if the label on the bottle didn’t tell me, or the crystal clear color of this rye didn’t clue me in, this is white dog, new make spirit, what ever you want to call it – it’s straight off the still rye!

Slight citrus notes.  If I didn’t know better, I might confuse the scent of this for a silver tequila.

Hints of gooseberries.

Very sweet nose.  Very clean as well.

Rye bread (duh!).

On the mouth Thinnish mouth feel.

I enjoy the flavor much more than the nose.  Very drinkable.

A slight saltiness to this.

Here’s a strange note for you: fresh cement.

Light & clean white wine.

Some unripened peach tones in there.

Tinned oranges.  Actually a tin of many fruits (including that one single solitary cherry they throw in for you).

Finish Medium in length with some of the rye from the nose and an interesting cranberry flavor that popped up.

In sum I went into reviewing this whisky with the thought that it’s nothing more than a rye for mixing purposes.  Nosing the stuff and I still felt this way.  Tasting it changed my mind.  I would be happy to sip on this stuff, especially in the summertime but I’d equally be happy to make a nice Manhattan with it.  Think I’ll pour a wee bit more…  Nah, have to review the Roundstone Rye now…

Roundstone Rye – Virginia, USA – 40%ABV – 750ml – $39

On the noseIt’s interesting what one year in an oak cask will do.

Upfront with the vanilla and a few hits of coconut.

Wet oak.

Rounded out with soft caramel apple

Peachy peach.

On the mouthBig and rich in flavor and a nice mouth feel.

Cinnamon sticks.

Grilled apple slices.

Still a good deal of new make-i-ness in there but, I’m a fan of young spirit so no complaints here and after only a small amount of time in a cask, I would not expect anything else.

Unripened peach (just like with the white dog).

FinishMedium in length with some great notes of caramel and rye.

In sumA very approachable rye, especially for those just getting into them.  It might benefit from a slightly higher ABV (maybe 46%) but still, a solid whisky (and yes, Catoctin Creek spells it “whisky” without the “E”.

Many thanks to Scott Harris for the generous samples!