Park City, Utah's High West Distillery opened in 2007 and has the honor of being the state's first legal distillery to open since 1870. High West offers an extensive line-up of bourbon and rye whiskeys, many of which you can now find on Idaho shelves. If you're looking for a unique Christmas gift for the brown booze-lover on your list, High West has plenty to choose from.
High West American Prairie Reserve Bourbon, $43.95
High West's APR contains a 6-year-old and a 10-year-old bourbon sourced from Midwest Grain Products (MGP) in Indiana. The whiskey has a pleasant, mild nose and is smooth on the palate, with slight honeydew sweetness along with light vanilla bean wood character.
High West Whiskey Campfire, $54.95
This blend of straight bourbon, 95 percent straight rye and an unnamed peated Scotch whiskey definitely delivers. The peat dominates the nose, earning its campfire name with plenty of smoke and a bit of fiery alcohol heat. On the palate, peat and sweet battle with flavors of roasted peaches, vanilla, caramel and spice. Our tasting panel noted that, "It's hemming and hawing about whether it wants to be a Scotch."
High West 36th Vote Barreled Manhattan, $47.95
Commemorating Utah casting the 36th vote to end Prohibition, this barrel-aged Manhattan includes two parts High West Rendezvous Rye, one part sweet vermouth and two dashes of bitters. It's sweet and smooth on the nose, with spicy hints of clove, cinnamon and orange peel. Maraschino cherry flavors shine through on the palate along with light vanilla oak. Verdict: this concoction is "incredibly drinkable."