High Liquors is a new operation producing a range of spirits – including whiskey, tequila, rum and vodka – and the company bills itself as the world’s first full line of ultra premium spirits. Always wary of buzzwords like “ultra premium,” and also wary of whiskey bottles that resemble a cross between vodka and Voss Water, we wanted to take High Whiskey for a spin.
But first –
High liquors was founded by friends Brad Wright and Chris Lawson. Lawson noted that they were “very frustrated with the vast differences in quality that all of the premium spirits brands possessed. If there was a vodka brand that you love, but you also like tequila, you had to go the extremely expensive route of trying all the tequilas out there to match the quality of the vodka brand you enjoy.“
To combat that issue, High Liquors operates under the mantra of “One Brand. Full Bar.” By offering a lineup of whiskey, tequila, rum and vodka, they hope to attract brand-loyal drinkers looking to sip spirits across categories, all provided by one label. Obviously this game plan won’t appeal to spirits connoisseurs who enjoy seeking out new and unusual bottles, but it may play well in Peoria.
The Whiskey –
Rather than a mashbill formulated into a specific spirit, High Whiskey is a blend of bourbon and rye whiskeys. The result is an 80 proof spirit that tastes like what it is: a blend of bourbon and rye. It’s extremely smooth, which is nice, but it’s lacking a traditional whiskey bite or distinguished oak influence. Instead, it’s very sweet – too sweet.
On the nose, High Whiskey has notes of caramel, vanilla and grains. Take a sip and you get an immediate hit of sweet caramel. It’s balanced slightly by some cinnamon spice, and it does turn somewhat dry toward the end, but that sugary sweet taste and syrupy body leaves a lasting impact.
That said, it’s not bad. It’s just not for me. Bourbon and rye aficionados will likely be turned off by High’s sweetness, which almost puts the product in a category of its own. But those new to the whiskey category might find its easy-drinking, no-burn nature to be just what they’re looking for.
As mentioned, High Liquors also produces a tequila, vodka and rum. We’ve yet to sample those three, but the company notes that each spirit comes from a different independent distillery and master distiller.
High Whiskey Stats:
– 40% Alcohol by Volume
CE Rating: ★★