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TINCUP American Whiskey

TINCUP American


By Robert Plotkin

Whiskey enthusiasts are beating a path to our shores. Certainly one explanation for this must be attributed to the combined efforts of the America's craft distillers. Over the past decade there has been surge in the number of small, craft distilleries being opened in the U.S, each the culmination of one individuals passion for creating exemplary spirits. Relying more on expertise and craftsmanship than algorithms and focus groups, these master distillers are changing how we see whiskey.

One charter member of this fraternity is Jess Graber. In 2000, he and Flying Dog Brewery's George Stranahan launched small batch Stranahan's Colorado Whiskey, which is distilled entirely from malted barley and aged between 2 and 5 years in heavily charred, American white oak barrels

Graber's latest claim to fame is TINCUP American Whiskey. Released in 2014, the handcrafted gem is distilled in Indiana from corn (64%), rye (32%) and barley malt (4%). After it exits the still, the whiskey is taken to the Stranahan's Distillery in Colorado where it is aged in new charred American oak barrels. Prior to bottling it is reduced to 84-proof with Rocky Mountain spring water.

TINCUP is definitely a whiskey with an American orientation, yet it's spicier than conventional bourbons. "I wanted to create an authentic American whiskey that combines the best Midwestern grains with Colorado's incomparable pure water," says Graber. "Given its high rye content, I think that TINCUP will appeal to whiskey drinkers who want a bolder taste. It's a great sipping whiskey, neat or with a few ice cubes, and it also makes a good base for classic cocktails like the Manhattan and the Old Fashioned."

TINCUP has an amber/golden hue, a satiny, medium-weight body and an enticing bouquet saturated with the aromas of raisins, caramel, vanilla, cherries and toasted oak. The longer the whiskey is allowed to breathe, the more aromatics come to the forefront. Its soft entry quickly expands bathing the palate with the long lasting flavors of semisweet corn, cherries, honey, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, raisins, vanilla and toffee. The lingering finish is spicy warm and thoroughly satisfying.

TINCUP is named for Tincup, an old mining town in Gunnison County, Colorado, in honor of the pioneering miners of the mid-19th century who sought their fortunes in the state's gold rush. The brand salutes this heritage with it hexagonal, deeply embossed bottle and a tin cup closure that can be used for sipping.