High West Valley Tan Utah Whiskey Review

Valley Tan Utah Whiskey is a Utah exclusive from High West – they have to take care of their own, after all.  In fact, the distillery is the only place you can buy this one.  Retail is $49.95 for a bottle.  This is batch 3, and things have changed since this whiskey was first released.

High West Master Distiller Brendan Coyle and Owner David Perkins decided to change mash bills.  What used to be oat based is now a wheat based recipe with a touch of oat and malted barley.  According to press materials, the recipe being used now is based on a historical recipe of whiskey made in Utah in the mid 1800s.  The whiskies used in this blend are aged one to six years, and bottled at 43.5% abv.

This is the first whiskey distilled by High West that I had the chance to taste, so I was pretty excited and had high expectations.  Let’s get right to it:

The nose comes across with a softened edge, bringing aromas of buttered wheat bread, maple syrup, Chardonnay and green plantains.  On the palate, there are lots of tamed fruit notes such as unripe banana and melon, alongside toasted grain and honey.  The medium-length finish leaves behind a honeyed grain note.

This is a delicate, flavorful whiskey from the folks at High West, and one that I’m glad they bottled and released.  I’d love to see this in a wider release, as I think it would appeal to folks looking for a lighter style whiskey something different. It doesn’t have the “bourbony” caramel and vanilla sweetness.  Instead, its sweet notes come from the grains used in the mash bill, and come across as more fruity sweetness and honey.  This one earns a recommendation.  7.5/10

Thanks to High West for the sample.  As always, all thoughts and opinions are my own.

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