Vinn Whiskey is made from rice and hails from Oregon and is one of a growing number of alternative grain, especially rice, whiskeys that have been hitting the market over the last 2-3 years. Though Vinn Whiskey differs quite a bit from the likes of Fukano, Ohishi or Kikori because “Vinn Whiskey is the first rice whiskey produced and bottled in the USA. Aged in American oak barrels, char #4…” and is the barrel aged version of Vinn’s Baijiu which uses jiuqu – similar to koji – to convert starch to sugar for the yeast.
Being made in America is definitely a differentiator from the other whiskies which are imports / barrel aged shochu, the major difference is the barrel itself. The barrel aged shochu style of rice whiskey all gets aged in used barrels like ex-Bourbon, Sherry, Cognac, Brandy, etc. while Vinn Whiskey gets aged in “virgin oak”. Brand new barrels that give Vinn Whiskey a unique bourbon-meets-scotch-plus-a-little-something-extra character after resting in those new barrels for about 2 years.
Vinn Whiskey Info
Region: Oregon, USA
Mashbill: 100% Rice
Cask: New charred oak
Age: NAS (~ 2 years)
Vinn Whiskey Review
Candied nuts, pralines, vanilla, graham, chocolate frosting and a touch of grain, oak and earth. It’s unconventional, different, a bit weird and I like it.
Cocoa, pralines, graham, candied nuts, cinnamon heavy spice and light touches of vanilla, oak and grainy sweetness. Palate delivers on the promise of the nose, it’s unconventional, a bit odd and again… I’m enjoying it.
Medium fade of pralines, cinnamon, candied walnuts and a bit of grainy sweetness.
BALANCE, BODY & FEEL
Carries a nice sense of balance, a round body and silken feel.
If you’re looking for a new whiskey experience try Vinn Whiskey. It’s fun, weird, unique and interesting and worth a dabble if you can find it at a price you’re ok testing something at. Distilled from rice, this barrel-aged baijiu has a remarkable amount of complexity for being only about 2 years old and I think a lot of that has to do with it being made from rice.
Rice doesn’t need to be distilled in copper because it’s a low-to-no sulfite distillate and comes out of the still sweeter and cleaner than distillate made from other grains which require a copper still to help pull a lot of that stuff out. This sweet distillate is then put in new-charred oak where it interacts with the caramelized sugars and vanillin in the oak and transforms it into a candy-like whiskey that holds a nice sense of balance and keeps it from being too sweet. Decent, interesting, stuff indeed.
SCORE: 84/100 (B)
*Disclosure: This Vinn Whiskey was graciously sent to me by the company for the purposes of this review. The views, opinions, and tasting notes are 100% my own.
Vinn Whiskey Review - Score Breakdown
- Nose - 84
- Palate - 84
- Finish - 84
- Balance, Body & Feel - 84
Vinn Whiskey is interesting, unique and worth a taste.