American Whiskey - Rye

Templeton Rye Prohibition Era Recipe Small Batch Rye Whiskey

From: Iowa, United States Liquor Review Category: Rye American Whiskey

Bottle/Rating Data

  • Proof66 Rating : 549 / 86315Templeton Rye Prohibition Era Recipe Small Batch Rye Whiskey
    Rabble Rating : 4.0 / 5.0
    Producer and Owner: Templeton Rye Spirits
    ABV: 40.0% Proof: 80.0
    Price (USD) : $40
    Age: N/A

Rating Description

Tier 1
This is a Tier 1 score in the Whiskey category. It means the spirit has won the highest recommendation at least once and probably many times.
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Awards

San Francisco World Spirits Competition

  • 2007
  • 2008
  • 2009
  • 2010
  • 2014
  • 2015
  • 2016

Beverage Testing Institute

  • 2008

Wine Enthusiast

  • 2007
  • 2008
  • 2010
  • 2013

Proof66 Notes

Templeton Rye whiskey claims heritage to prohibition times when Iowan "outlaws" eagerly made available a highly sought-after whiskey. They claim it was known as "the good stuff" and retailed for today's equivalent of $70... it became the choice of Al Capone himself.

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Rabble Reviews

This bottle has 15 ratings and 15 reviews.
BDanner BDanner (272)
Rating: 0.5 (2016-10-13)[Updated Review]
I've been meaning to come back and revisit this one since the court settlement and the conduct of the Kerkhoffs during and after the trial (If you haven't read their statements before and after the verdict, look them up). I found this very good, but overpriced before. I enjoyed it enough that I purchased it twice on sale for around $40. Now...I didn't mind the cockamamie backstory (I have purchased and enjoyed several spirits with enhanced or fictional backstories). I didn't mind that it was LDI (I like Bulleit rye, James E Pepper Rye, Tincup and several other LDI sourced products). What bothers me now is finding out that there is a "flavoring chemical" added to it to make it "taste like the original recipe" because "we can't make the original recipe and still call it rye". And then turn around and charge almost $50 a bottle for it? You've traded one unbelievable story for one that's even more unbelievable. Thanks, but no. You've gotten my last dollar. It gets 1/2 a star for being liquid and containing alcohol, but that's it.
3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • - KaiserSoze up voted your review on 2016-10-17.

  • - Irishman up voted your review on 2016-10-14.

  • - Cranecreek up voted your review on 2016-09-17.

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Review Comments
Cranecreek (2016-09-17):
Give 'em hell BD - I'm behind you in having my fill of lies. Stay tuned for an upcoming Bulleit 10 year review- where I will stuff Bulleit under the bus with Templeton.Not because of the whiskey,(10year old Four Roses SB) but because of deception.

KaiserSoze (2016-10-12):
My local supermarket added this to their shelf about 6 months ago and every time I pass through the liquor lane, I stop and look at it. I’ve heard all the background hoopla and controversy surrounding this bottle, but it does have a fair number of positive reviews out there, so it’s always been on my “list to try”. After reading your review, I think I can firmly say I will never buy this stuff. The price tag and the 80 proof always steered me away but after seeing your experience, it’s now been removed from my “list”. For the most part, I think we have pretty similar tastes (except of course for Johnnie Walker Red, lol!!) Thanks BD!

BDanner (2016-10-13):
Kaiser...I hope I'm not being too harsh on this one, but there are so many equal (or better) ryes out there for less money that don't rely on an added chemical flavoring. I don't mind paying $45 for a $45 whiskey, but I won't pay $45 for a $20 whiskey with a chemical added to it to make it taste like a $45 whiskey. And about the Johnnie Red? I find myself ordering it while dining out quite often on the rocks. It's kind of growing on me and is available in every restaurant with a bar.

KaiserSoze (2016-10-17):
I agree completely! And I'm glad to see you're coming around on Johnnie Walker Red!

skorpitarius skorpitarius (22)
Rating: 3.0 (2016-09-14)
i bought a bottle to try, for reference . you can clearly smell and taste the flavor additive that they mix in . smells great but it doesn't translate to great taste, unfortunately . sipped neat . made a few cocktails and was never terribly impressed. it's fairly boring and mild . i crave more power & complexity in a rye . i gave the rest of the bottle to a friend . it is definetly, over-priced. bulleit/redemption/dickel are all 'better' for less money . glad I at least, tried it for reference.
1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • - BDanner up voted your review on 2016-09-15.

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US Spirit US Spirit (74)
Rating: 5.0 (2015-12-07)
This is another rather polarizing spirit to review. If you're a whiskey snob (at least if you're a whiskey snob into American whiskies) you're probably about higher proofs and older bottles. This is an NAS rye that's probably about 6 years old, and it clocks in at a mere 80 proof. It is NOT going to impress everyone. That said, I love Templeton. It is made from the same 95-5 mash as Bulleit, most likely at the same contract distillery, and also most likely aged for the same 6 years. Yet somehow while Bulleit comes out with a dry, sour, pickle tang that goes with nothing, Templeton comes out sweet, sour, very slightly minty, yeasty, rye-bready and seems to play nice with almost everything. It makes one of the best Old Fashioned's I've ever had, if I HAD to choose this and Dolan's is my favorite Manhattan to date, its even excellent with Sour Mix. It's also wonderful neat, and decent over ice (I'm not really a huge fan of rye on ice, in my experience ice brings out the rye fire for some reason). Yes, the price is a bit high compared to Bulleit (which given the fact that its produced in the same place and aged for the same amount of time, it ought to be priced similarly), but its still worth it to me. Templeton is not an in-your-face experience, but its well balanced, and quite flavorful will also being refined and distinctly rye-like. This is a wonderful introduction to rye if you don't mind paying $37-$42 and one of my top 10 brown liquors ever. I'd recommend it to others who want a gentle introduction to rye, or just a good gentle rye in general. Five out of five stars for me.
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Review Comments
BDanner (2016-01-08):
The difference in taste is probably based on the flavorings they add to it so it supposedly mimics "the good stuff" Al Capone drank. I keep meaning to revisit my original review of this. I did enjoy it, but I will NEVER pay $46 for another bottle of this now that I can find Rittenhouse, Sazerac, and Old Overholt in my area.

Filthee Filthee (62)
Rating: 2.0 (2015-01-30)
Nothing offensive about this, just boring and far too overpriced. Would be a great $20-25 but for it's cost, the experience just isn't there
1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • - BDanner up voted your review on 2015-12-08.

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tmccarth tmccarth (6)
Rating: 5.0 (2014-12-06)
Very smooth
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DakotaGuy DakotaGuy (73)
Rating: 4.0 (2014-06-14)
Being an Iowa resident for a time, I have many friends who hold this in the highest esteem. It is quite good, but for 10 to 15 clams less I will go for Bulleit Rye instead.
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degbert degbert (206)
Rating: 3.0 (2014-06-13)
When I write liquor reviews, I tend to take notes and then write the reviews 24 hours later-ish and see what stuck in my head as notable. I had this last night. Nothing stuck in my head except "that was pretty good". For me, at least, rye should have a big personality. It should be the drag queen of whiskeys; big, spicy, distinctive, and wearing a wig. (All right, maybe not the wig.) Templeton failed to make much of an impression on me; I remember more about the animated rat than the whiskey. So three -- three and a half, really -- stars.
2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • - Filthee up voted your review on 2015-06-30.

  • - BDanner up voted your review on 2014-09-13.

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Muncher Muncher (584)
Rating: 4.0 (2014-04-06)
Would be a good intro for newbies into the rye world. Minty, sweet, and with a little bit of oak in there too. Easy drinking and enjoyable. I'd probably give it 5 stars if it were somewhere between 90 and 100 proof.
1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • - Irishman up voted your review on 2014-04-06.

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conditionZero conditionZero (16)
Rating: 5.0 (2013-08-08)
I can't say it any better than Mr. Carlsson or Professor Cocktail have below, so I won't attempt it. I will say, however, that I reserve my five star rating for only the liquors that really move me. This is one of those. Ignore the relatively low "overall rating" and settle for nothing less.
1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • - Filthee down voted your review on 2015-06-30.

  • - Irishman up voted your review on 2014-04-06.

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joelbarrett joelbarrett (56)
Rating: 4.0 (2013-03-21)
Smooth. Friend from Iowa providers tasting. Have it neat for more flavor.
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Inferno Inferno (2)
Rating: 5.0 (2013-03-05)
I have tried many Rye's and keep going back to this one. By far my favorite. This Rye gives you a warm and very relaxed buzz, much different than all others I have tried. Templeton holds customer bottling days in Templeton, Iowa. A very cool experience that I would recommend to anyone. Many to for the experience more than once.
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philcasarotto philcasarotto (3)
Rating: 5.0 (2012-11-14)
My favorite rye. Well worth the price
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ProfessorCocktail ProfessorCocktail (68)
Rating: 5.0 (2012-01-10)
Hard to find, but worth the effort. The color in the bottle is a medium amber, like the color of old copper. Lighter in the glass, with a golden glow and the scent of spicy rye bread. The initial flavor is dry, bold, and spicy, transitioning to a rich, almost sour flavor, but with an undertone of sweetness. The finish is still dry and spicy and lingers just long enough to sustain you to the next sip. Oustanding in every way. For the complete review, and more like it, please visit ProfessorCocktail.com.
1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • - Irishman up voted your review on 2012-10-22.

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Irishman Irishman (323)
Rating: 5.0 (2011-07-01)
One of my favorite rye whiskeys, but sometimes hard to find. Full of flavor with a fantastic finish.
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ChrisCarlsson ChrisCarlsson (328)
Rating: 5.0 (2010-09-03)
Thick rye malt body,almost chewy in texture and mouth feel. There is a spicy sourness with an underlying sweetness that make for a outstandingly mellow rye of breadth and complexity.The rye is well tempered with other grains to make a excellent stand-up rye that combines the fire and strength of grain balanced with sweetness and careful aging.
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  • 720815920231
  • 720815920101
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