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This limited rye whiskey is back, and it’s a Manhattan in a bottle

Fans of classic cocktails will love this whiskey

Whiskey in a glass on a table
Timothy James / Unsplash

If you’ve never tried Maryland rye whiskey, you’re a few centuries late to the party. The whiskey style has been around since the colonial days when Scottish and Irish immigrants decided to distill the spirit when they realized rye was a much easier crop to grow in the mid-Atlantic than barley. Its history in America is even older than that of bourbon. Like all rye whiskey, Maryland rye has seen a resurgence in the last few years thanks to brands like Sagamore Spirit.

The brand, which was founded in 2013, has a slew of award-winning expressions, and we suggest you get to know all they have to offer. But we’re most excited about one of the Baltimore-based distillery’s newest releases: Sagamore Manhattan Finish Rye Whiskey.

First released in limited quantities back in 2020, the distillery recently announced that this highly sought-after expression is back for a second time.

Sagamore Manhattan Finish Rye Whiskey

Sagamore Spirit Manhattan Finish
Sagamore Spirit

If you haven’t guessed it already, fans of the classic Manhattan cocktail (made with rye whiskey, sweet vermouth, and bitters) are going to love everything about this unique expression. The 2024 release of Sagamore Manhattan Finish Rye Whiskey is a potent, sippable 103-proof. It begins as a 4-year-old straight rye whiskey. It’s then finished in vermouth, bitters, and cherry brandy barrels for at least twenty full months. The result is a complex, rich, sweet rye whiskey that takes on all the memorable characteristics of a traditional Manhattan cocktail.

What does it taste like?

Whiskey with a black background
Mathew Schwartz / Unsplash

Did we mention this rye whiskey tastes exactly like a Manhattan cocktail? Because it really does. Sipping it neat reveals notes of dried cherries, vanilla beans, honey, and gentle spices. The folks at Sagamore Spirit suggest drinkers take it one step further and use this whiskey to make a Manhattan. What could be better than a base of Sagamore Manhattan Finish Rye Whiskey, along with bitters, vermouth, and the brand’s whiskey cherries?

“The original idea for Manhattan Finish back in 2020 challenged us to fully deconstruct the flavors of a Manhattan to create a full-proof whiskey that leaves you with a parting kiss of the cocktail,” Ryan Norwood, VP of Operations at Sagamore Spirit said in a press release. “Manhattans have become even more popular since then, so we knew it was time to bring back this delicious, limited-edition rye expression.”

How much does it cost?

Whiskey bottles
Adam Wilson/Unsplash

This expression is the newest release in Sagamore Spirit’s Reserve Series. It was created to pay tribute to the legacy of Maryland Rye whiskey. The brand previously released a port-finished rye whiskey. Sagamore Manhattan Finish Rye Whiskey is available for a suggested retail price of $79.99 at the Baltimore-based distillery and select retailers nationwide. If you’re a classic cocktail fan, you’re going to want a bottle of this limited-edition release.

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Christopher Osburn
Christopher Osburn is a food and drinks writer located in the Finger Lakes Region of New York. He's been writing professional
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