[Moderator note: This topic became too large for our servers to handle, so we've divided it up; the earlier part of the discussion is here: What did you buy at the liquor store today?]
Templeton. Now that's a delicious rye. Heavy on the oak. Wonder what it'd be like in one of those New York Sazeracs: equal parts cognac and rye.
That sounds wonderful... Added to my to-do cocktail list.
Templeton is rye from what used to be the LDI and is now MGPI distillery in Lawrenceburg, Indiana who makes a ton of different distilled spirits that they sell to others for use in their own brand. Essentially the same stuff is also found in Bulleit and Redemption rye and quite possible several others. High West uses LDI rye in some of their blends.
Templeton, Bulleit and Redemption don't make any of it themselves, despite what they may claim in their marketing. It is not a bad rye mind you but between the three I would be inclined to buy the one that has the best price. My experience is that it is usually not Templeton.
The cream of the LDI crop, in my opinion, is Willett. Not only do they seem to pick the best barrels (for my taste), but they also bottle at barrel proof. I just don't see any sense in paying for the water that's in Templeton. Willett has finally laid down some of their own output, and based on what I've experienced of their palate, I'm looking forward to tasting it in a few years.
Also, the new George Dickel Rye is also LDI juice, which is charcoal filtered.
I have to agree about the Willett. Absolutely fantastic whiskey.