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Blue Run High Rye Bourbon | Straight Bourbon Whiskey Review

Blue Run High Rye Bourbon

Distillery: Castle and Key Distillery owned by Blue Run Spirits

Proof: 111

Mash bill: 65% Corn, 30% Rye, 5% malted barley

Age: NAS, but at least 4 years old, probably 6-7 though

MSRP: $99.99

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Fool Proof Rating and Summary of Tasting Notes

Color: Dark honey

Nose: Rye spice, toffee, and toasted oak

Palate: Baking spices, sweet caramel, black pepper, toasted oak, hints of citrus

Finish: Moderate to long, dark fruit, cinnamon, black pepper, and oak

Feel: Moderate mouth coating with a thinner feel than expected

See below for an in-depth review

Use my exclusive discount code: WHISKEYFOOL10 to receive $10 off qualifying* orders. Copy and paste to use at checkout.

*$100 or more

For all my tastings I use either the Libbey Signature Kentucky Bourbon Trail Whiskey Glass or a traditional Glencairn glass. They both are great for nosing and help in discerning more subtle notes.


In-Depth Review of Blue Run High Rye Bourbon

A group of friends who love their bourbon decided to try and change the whiskey industry. Armed with a Nike designer, Facebook's very first director-level employee, an experienced hospitality executive, a political advisor, and philanthropist – plus Master Distiller Jim Rutledge (previously of Four Roses distillery) as the "liquid director" (with over 50 years experience in whisky!) – Blue Run Spirits was born. This team is creating some remarkable products for today’s modern whisky fan! I'm looking forward to what they are going do to next.

Blue Run High Rye Bourbon is a small batch whiskey, blended from 232 barrels. This is bottle 2618 from batch number 2.

Check out my review of Blue Run Golden Rye Whiskey here.


Despite not being overly complex, the nose of Blue Run High Rye Bourbon is inviting! I'm hit with the unmistakable aroma of rye spice, toffee, and oak that all blend together well. There's something very comforting about it's nose. I'm hoping for a little more on the palate.


The first thing that comes to your palate is a mix of baking spices and sweet caramel. Then, there are hints of dill and even some citrusy notes that add some complexity. Finally, it's all rounded out with a nice oak flavor. Seems to be more mellow than the 111 proof would imply.


The finish definitely isn't the longest finish, but it does have great flavor. I would say it's a moderate to long finish. I get notes of dark fruit/stone fruit, cinnamon, and black pepper that give it a unique flavor. It lingers for a nice amount of time on the palate, but not quite long enough - I wish the finish was a bit longer! Despite this, I still think it's a very good whiskey with lots of great complexities to unpack.


This bourbon has a moderate mouth-coat but the mouthfeel itself is surprisingly thinner than expected.

Final Thoughts

Overall, this is a great whiskey, from Jime Rutledge, that offers an inviting aroma of rye spice and toffee. Its palate features spice and sweet caramel notes while its finish has hints of dark fruit, cinnamon, and black pepper. Despite the moderate mouth coat, it surprisingly has a thinner-than-expected mouthfeel which may indicate it is younger than 7 years old. Nevertheless, this bourbon packs lots of complexity into each sip making for an enjoyable experience!

Check out my review of Blue Run Golden Rye whiskey.

I would like to thank my friend Jared for providing me with this bottle/sample. We had fun sampling this bottle. I have not seen this one for sale in my area, but you can buy it now a Caskers.

Use my exclusive discount code: WHISKEYFOOL10 to receive $10 off qualifying* orders. Copy and paste to use at checkout.

*$100 or more

I would love to hear from you! Drop me a comment below and let me know what you think of this whiskey.

Below are my favorite glasses for doing tastings. The Libbey Signature Kentucky Bourbon Trail Whiskey Glass is my favorite because it has a little more heft to it and feels better in my hand than the traditional Glencairn glass does.


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