During the Middle Ages in America the favorite drink of many upper class citizens was straight rye whiskey. Along the eastern seaboard there were two major varieties of straight rye whiskey made. At that time the flavor became much more mellow, and a lighter yellow color was chosen to make the whiskey appear more sweet. However, this was not the preferred result and in some cases the whiskey was backwoods colored.
Different varieties of straight rye whiskey are available today. One of the most well-known is the original version made from only pure rye grain, and all corn is never added. The corn is primarily used to give the whiskey a sweet, brown color. Distillers that use a “corn-finished” or “distilled” rye grain can produce a very sweet whiskey, without the depth of flavor that can be attained by adding corn.
Rye whiskey, which is also known as American straight rye whiskey, is traditionally known as a stronger tasting whiskey. Many distillers add different varieties of yeast to the boiling process in order to produce a more complex taste. One of the more common methods is called “bleaching”. This method involves adding rye grains to the boiling whiskey, allowing the mixture to boil for several minutes, and then taking off the spoon and gently swirling in the whiskey.
An interesting bit of information about straight rye whiskey that may surprise many drinkers is that it was first created in 1843 as a substitute for hard liquor. It was introduced in the West Indies and England because it was cheaper and a simpler substitute than bootleg whiskey that the newcomers would drink. It was also easier to store in the barrels that were used for aging the other types of whiskey. Because the distilling process removes most of the alcohol, the result is a much smoother, less bitter whiskey. Because of its simpler flavor, it became known as non-wheated, meaning it could be mixed with other beverages without a drastic change in taste.
Many people enjoy American straight rye whiskey; however, there are also many other types that are produced. One of the most popular is what is known as “Jim Beam”. There are four different styles of this American whiskey, and each one is based around its rye mash. The oldest style is known as the “Jim Beam rye whiskeys”. These are some of the most popular whiskeys in the world, because they are often compared to older, maturation products like Old Demeritor and Bombay whiskeys.
The” Beam” name is pronounced BEAM-ee and simply means “overholt glass”. The oldest examples of this whiskey date back to 18 Volunteers, but today the most popular version is a Jim Beam White Whiskey. The newer versions are created using different recipes and different mash blends, but the base drink is the same. There are many different styles of straight rye whiskey available to the consumer, and many people find that they prefer the American version.