This bottle presented something of a conundrum to me when I first acquired it from a co-worker. This bottling comes from the tasting room at Skiprock Distillery in Snohomish WA and is only sold there. I inquired of the distiller about it because the label is a little odd and they were thankfully able to clear up some of my confusion.
I am told that Ty Wolfe was originally a label owned by Mac Donald Distillery which was bottled by Skiprock and that Skiprock has since bought the brand. As with any change in company there are bound to be changes in marketing and it can be costly to relabel products already on the shelf.
This should be the same product as the Ty Wolfe Aged Bourbon currently on offer from Skiprock. This is a wheated bourbon, meaning their grain bill is at least 51% corn with the remainder being primarily wheat instead of rye. As rye tends towards a more spicy character this is a much smoother more mellow whiskey than say the Bullit Rye.
After letting my sample breathe for a bit I was able to get some very nice caramel notes in the nose. The flavor isn’t flashy and while it does have a little burn up front it isn’t a serious burner.
This is not a very soft selection, it is aged only about 18 months which means it’s not a straight whiskey. A year and a half gives it some oak but means it lacks a lot of the stronger flavors that oak imparts such as vanilla, leather or coffee.
It blends sweetly, a little water can smooth out some of the rough spots. It does like a little air to let some of the higher fumes burn off. Mixed into a cocktail it works as well as any other bourbon and doesn’t mess about with odd flavors. I wish I could speak to price comparison but I could not find a store that stocked it anywhere in range so I think this will likely remain a regional flavor for a while yet.