WhistlePig has been a big name in the whiskey world since they started distilling whiskey. They’ve continued to dominate the rye whiskey market, and some of their whiskey that’s aged for 15 to 20 years sells for well over $200 to $400. When it comes to whiskey in a bottle, it’s hard to beat Whistlepig if you’re a fan of rye whiskey.
While WhistlePig has been a big brand in the high-end whiskey market, in recent years, they’ve started to appeal to a wider market with whiskey that’s aged for under 10 years. Therefore, mainstream drinkers can enjoy an otherwise exclusive taste for the first time.
Read on to learn more about WhistlePig Whiskey’s history, what it tastes like, and how you can enjoy it.
WhistlePig Whiskey: An Introduction
WhistlePig Whiskey is known for making high-quality rye whiskey. It’s typically aged for 10 to 15 years and has a smooth taste that you can drink out of the bottle. To this day, WhistlePig is known for maintaining a level of quality that’s hard to find in other types of rye whiskey.
You’ll find that it has a bold flavor that’s paired with subtle spices that will tickle your taste buds in a way you didn’t think whiskey could. In fact, many types of WhistlePig Whiskey are known for having subtle hints of vanilla, caramel, and hints of oak.
In the liquor world, WhistlePig is categorized as a sophisticated liquor that’s associated with luxurious events, class, and of course, having deep pockets. That said, some of the brand’s new creations are accessible to people who have less to spend on whiskey but still want to have a good time.
What Is the Alcohol Content of WhistlePig Whiskey?
WhistlePig Whiskey has a unique alcohol content for each whiskey that’s offered. That said, their standard whiskey usually has an ABV that’s between 40 and 50 percent. Still, some of their special blends and high-end rye whiskeys will have an ABV that’s closer to cask strength proof, which has a much higher ABV. Therefore, Whistlepig has you covered for any type of buzz you want.
What Is the History of WhistlePig Whiskey?
WhistlePig was founded recently, about a decade and a half ago in 2007. It was founded by Raj Peter Pickerell, and he went on a mission to elevate rye whiskey and bring it to prominence once again. While rye whiskey was popular during the 20th century, its popularity started to dwindle after World War II, but over the last decade, it’s started to come back into prominence.
WhistlePig first came into the whiskey scene with high-quality whiskey; ultimately, they wanted to make a mark on the industry to get their name out there. For this reason, some of the first products offered were whiskey that was aged for upwards of 10 years. This product came out in 2010, and the original ingredients were sourced from outside the United States in Canada.
Today, Whistlepig crafts their whiskey in Vermont and opts for a farm-to-bottle approach, which has become popular among distillers and craft brewers.
Where Is Whistlepig Whiskey From?
WhistlePig whiskeys are produced in Vermont. Ingredients for the whiskey used to come from Canada, but the brand opted to produce their rye whiskey in the United States to become more of a farm-to-bottle distiller. This means that all ingredients are sourced by local farms in Vermont and the entire distilling process begins and ends in Vermont.
In Vermont, WhistlePig is distilled 7 days a week at WhistlePig Farm, which is a 500-acre farm that was converted into a whiskey distillery. Everything is grown and made at WhistlePig Farm.
When Was WhistlePig Whiskey Created?
Whistlepig was founded in 2007 but they didn’t have a product until three years later. It wasn’t until 2010 that WhistlePig was able to release its first whiskey. Today, WhistlePig continues to innovate with its rye whiskey as new limited edition options come out each year. New WhistlePig whiskey is also being created to this day, with a great example being the company’s venture into bourbon and Irish whiskey in 2021.
What Types of WhistlePig Whiskey Are There?
When it comes to variety, WhistlePig has you covered. While there used to only be expensive whiskey that could cost half a grand, that’s no longer the case. Today, WhistlePig manufactures a handful of whiskey products that can fit anyone’s unique flavor profile, smoothness, and wallet.
One of the most popular types of WhistlePig whiskey is their 10-year-old rye whiskey, Small Batch Rye, which is what put them on the map. Most of the whiskey is aged in the distillery’s signature Vermont oak barrels, which gives most of their whiskeys a flavor profile that includes vanilla and caramel.
There is also a 15-year rye whiskey that WhistlePig makes, which is known as their Estate Oak Rye Aged 15 Years. It’s one of the smoothest rye whiskeys you’ll ever have, and this shows in its ratings, which are the highest among most types of rye whiskey. Aside from these rye whiskeys, there is also a 12-year-old whiskey and a 6-year-old whiskey. In fact, there is even an 18-year aged double malt rye that’s likely smoother than any whiskey you’ve tried.
While WhistlePig’s most popular whiskey is aged rye whiskey, the distillery also produces some bourbons. Examples include the Piggyback 100 Proof Bourbon and Beyond Bounded Bourbon. The Piggyback Bourbon is aged for six years, and the Beyond Bounded Bourbon is farm-to-bottle.
What Ingredients are in WhistlePig Whiskey?
WhistlePig whiskey has a couple of ingredients, but the primary ingredient in their rye whiskey is rye grain. Most of the rye used in their rye whiskey is grown on their Vermont farm, which makes all of their ingredients farm-to-bottle.
That said, WhistlePig also has some bourbon whiskey that uses corn as the primary ingredient. Therefore, the primary ingredient changes based on the type of whiskey you plan on drinking.
How Much Does WhistlePig Usually Cost?
WhistlePig is one of the more exclusive whiskeys that you can find. The Estate Oak Rye Whiskey that’s aged for 15 years can cost upwards of $300, and the 12-year aged whiskey can cost about $150. From there, the price goes down as the age of the whiskey drops. For example, the 6-year rye is only about $50, and the 10-year rye is similar in price. That said, some special edition whiskeys will cost even more.
What is the Best Way to Enjoy WhistlePig Whiskey?
When you’re drinking an aged rye whiskey like WhistlePig, it’s important to start by sipping it. When you sip on a delicious rye whiskey, you’ll experience the aroma, delicious oak flavor, and smoothness as it goes down.
For this reason, it’s best enjoyed straight or with a hint of garnish. It’s a great choice for an Old Fashioned, and while it can be enjoyed in this or another type of cocktail, some of the 15-year and 18-year ryes should be enjoyed in a glass without ice.
The 6-year and 10-year ryes are a better option if you’re looking for something to use in a cocktail.
How to Choose a Good WhistlePig Whiskey
WhistlePig produces a wide range of whiskey for you to enjoy as long as you know what you’re looking for. While it’s not hard to find a good-tasting whiskey, it’s important to understand what you’re getting.
If you want a smooth whiskey that you can drink straight or on the rocks, you’ll want the more expensive 15-year and 18-year whiskeys. On the other hand, if you plan on using the whiskey in a cocktail, you’re better off with a whiskey that hasn’t been aged for nearly as long.
There are also some special blends that you may like based on your flavor profile. Regardless of what you choose, it’s always important to focus on how it tastes by taking a sip before you mix it with anything. This is the best way to know if you like it.
Where Can You Find WhistlePig Whiskey?
WhistlePig whiskey is a niche rye whiskey that’s popular across the United States. That said, the operation is based in Vermont, and it’s a small business, so it’s easier to get your hands on it if you live in the Northeast. Otherwise, there’s a chance that you won’t find it at your local liquor store.
The good news is that many types of Whistlepig can be shipped across the United States from online retailers.
What Are Popular Alternatives to WhistlePig Whiskey?
When it comes to alternatives, it depends on what you’re after. If you’re looking for a different type of rye whiskey, we recommend something like Frey Ranch Bottled-In-Bond Straight Rye Whiskey. You’ll find that the distillery has many of the same values as Whistlepig but with a different flavor and more affordable pricing.
On the other hand, if you’re looking for a different type of whiskey, you can look for a good corn whiskey, like a bourbon, or opt for something like a Scotch. You can also seek out other types of whiskey like Knobel Whiskey. That said, if you like the whiskey flavor, you probably won’t be too happy with clear liquor like vodka, but Meili Vodka may be good enough to get you to switch over.
Want to learn more about WhistlePig? Find answers to some of the most common questions below.
Is WhistlePig a Sipping Whiskey?
Yes, WhistlePig is a sipping whiskey. It’s one of the smoothest rye whiskeys you’ll ever sip on. Even their new bourbon whiskey is delicious for sipping. That said, it’s only good for sipping if you have a taste for whiskey and opt for some of the more expensive whiskey options. Whiskey that’s only aged for six years won’t be as smooth and may be too spicy for some whiskey lovers.
Is WhistlePig’s Bourbon or Rye Whiskey Better?
One of the most important things to consider is the type of WhistlePig whiskey that you want to try. The brand makes Irish whiskey, bourbon whiskey, and rye whiskey. That said, their rye whiskey is often praised more than the other options because they’ve been doing it for longer. That’s not to say that their other whiskey is bad, it’s just not as popular yet.
Why Is WhistlePig Expensive?
WhistlePig is expensive because it’s aged for a long time in some of Vermont’s best oak barrels. Some of the limited edition releases are also expensive because of the ultra-premium rye that the brand uses. WhistlePig is in a category of its own when it comes to the quality of rye, so it’s not uncommon for some bottles to reach prices upwards of $500.
Why Is WhistlePig Called WhistlePig?
The name WhistlePig has some unique inspiration from the brand’s founder. It comes from a time when the Bhakata was hiking through the mountains of Colorado and met a stranger who told him to be on the lookout for a whistle pig, which is also known as a groundhog.
Experience Ultra-Premium Rye Whiskey With WhistlePig
Looking to up your whiskey-drinking game? Or perhaps you want to give rye whiskey a try for the first time? In either case, there’s nothing quite like WhistlePig’s rye whiskey. As one of the few distilleries in the United States that grow their ultra-premium rye, you’ll get a unique farm-to-bottle experience that’s hard to experience elsewhere.
What’s more, WhistlePig is one of the best rye whiskeys to try if you’re just starting out. While most of the 10 or 15-year whiskeys are expensive, you can get premium reg whiskey that’s been aged for six years for under $100.