Dry Fly Distilling Whiskey, Gin, and Vodka Reviews

  • 01 of 05

    The Craft Spirits of Dry Fly Distilling

    Dry Fly Distilling Portfolio of Craft Spirits
    There are some amazing liquors being produced at Dry Fly Distilling in Washington. Dry Fly Distilling

    In Spokane, Washington lies a distillery that in its few short years has fervently pursued the art of craft distilled spirits. The four spirits from Dry Fly Whiskey are each impressive and as a portfolio a fine testament to what the "little guy" can do, which is what makes the liquor industry so interesting to follow.

    The current portfolio includes both a bourbon and a wheat whiskey along with an award-winning gin and vodka. Each of these spirits are produced with locally sourced ingredients and...MORE have a fascinating wheat base that you cannot ignore.

    If you are looking for a great set of American-made, hand-crafted spirits, check out Dry Fly.

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  • 02 of 05

    Dry Fly Washington Bourbon 101 Whiskey

    Dry Fly Washington Bourbon Whiskey
    A fantastic bourbon from Washington state, Dry Fly's Bourbon 101 is a small-batch, hand-crafted whiskey you should know. Dry Fly Distilling

    Dry Fly Distilling, located in the scenic town of Spokane Washington, is nationally renowned for their hand crafted spirits. With a true farm to table philosophy, Dry Fly only uses products from Washington state to make their line of award winning vodka, gin and whiskies.

    Their newest addition to the lineup is the highly anticipated release of Washington state's first bourbon. Expected to hit the market in time for the Christmas shopping season, Dry Fly Bourbon will be in short supply once...MORE enthusiasts get a chance to taste this whiskey.

    Tasting Notes

    Nose

    At two and a half years old, Dry Fly Bourbon has a soft, elegant nose with hints of Madagascar vanilla emerging from a veil of warm oak notes. With a mash bill of 60% corn, 20% barley and 20% wheat, this whiskey is designed to be complex and yet eminently approachable.

    Body and Palate

    Dry Fly Bourbon has a surprisingly pleasant mouthfeel given its relative youth. In the glass, a certain viscosity is evident, leaving a trail of "legs" down the side of the glass in whiskey parlance, a sure sign of quality and craftsmanship.

    On the palate, Dry Fly Bourbon is a bold whiskey, offering more hints of Madagascar vanilla and complex bursts of spice that explode on the palate like a Fourth of July fireworks display. Think cinnamon sticks, nutmeg and a pleasant toasty oakiness mingling with dried orange peel and, perhaps, a hint of Washington apples?

    Whatever flavors one might find in this bourbon, it is clear that there is a strong sense of place with this dram. Dry Fly isn't trying to replicate bourbons from Kentucky here, there is a definite sense of place to this whiskey. When you taste Dry Fly bourbon, your palate will take you to the pristine rivers, rich farms and clean air of eastern Washington.

    There is no mistaking what this is, Dry Fly an iconic bourbon that represents the people and the environment where it was made.

    Finish

    Dry Fly bourbon offers a long, lingering and warm finish replete with vanilla wafer, caramel and orange marmalade notes. This is a bourbon to be sipped and savored, perhaps after a great day of fishing.

    About Dry Fly Washington Bourbon 101 Whiskey

    • Hand-crafted, small-batch bourbon whiskey distilled from corn, barley, and wheat and aged for 2 1/2 years.
    • Produced by Dry Fly Distilling of in Spokane, Washington.
    • Released in 2010
    • 50.5% alcohol/volume (101 proof)
    • Retails for around $65/750ml bottle
    • Visit their website

    Written by Lance Mayhew
    Originally Published: June 10, 2010
    Edited by Colleen Graham: September 2, 2015

    Disclosure: Review samples were provided by the manufacturer. For more information, please see our Ethics Policy.

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  • 03 of 05

    Dry Fly Washington Wheat Whiskey

    Dry Fly Washington Wheat Whiskey
    Produced in Washington State, Dry Fly Washington Wheat is a great whiskey for any cocktail. Dry Fly Distilling

    After tasting Dry Fly Wheat Whiskey I have to agree wholeheartedly with the review Lance Mayhew gave, so instead of reiterating those thoughts I will allow you to read that account below.

    What I will say is that this is one of the most impressive wheat whiskies I've had to date and tasting it is a journey.

    I really enjoyed the joyride of the experience, which progresses from the sweeter nose to the spicy-sweet taste to the final spicy finish. It's a whiskey that will be a fantastic cocktail...MORE mixer in the likes of a Manhattan or Fancy Whiskey if you can get your hands on it, which is its one downfall.

    March 2010 will see the third batch released and it is likely to disappear as fast as the first two, but that is the price we pay for falling for small batch spirits and it is a worthy sacrifice.

    The Review

    Written by Lance Mayhew

    When Dry Fly Distilling began operations in 2007 in Spokane Washington, no one knew quite what to expect.

    Washington state had some of the toughest regulations in the country for craft distillers. Spokane was better known for Gonzaga basketball than the culinary charms of its more urbane neighbors of Seattle and Portland. The decision to use only locally grown grains and botanicals in their products made some wonder whether Dry Fly could be priced competitively in the market.

    Now, entering its third year of production, and featuring award-winning vodka and gin, owners Kent Fleishmann and Don Poffenroth have started to release some of their wheat whiskey. Dry Fly whiskey is extremely hard to find and has very limited production so far, with just two batches being released to consumers.

    I recently had the opportunity to try Dry Fly's 100% Washington Wheat Whiskey, and I highly recommend it.

    Distilled in a Christian Carl pot still to 120 proof (60% alcohol by volume), this whiskey then spent 18 months in new American oak casks. Both runs of approximately 1500 bottles were cut to 80 proof (40% abv) and hand bottled.

    Tasting Notes

    At first appearance, this whiskey shines bright like a freshly polished copper penny. On the nose, it was slightly spicy and a bit hotter than I expected a whiskey at 80 proof to be. After a bit of time, the nose revealed big caramel tones, with hints of butterscotch pudding, tangerines, almonds, tupelo honey and hay.

    On the palate, neat this whiskey was very soft, almost like a baby's blanket caressing my tongue, with freshly baked orange scones, cinnamon toast, white pepper and peppermint notes. When I added a splash of water, this whiskey became even softer, with ripe peaches, spice cake, Juicy Fruit gum and grassy notes.

    The whiskey had a finish of 25 to 30 seconds, taken neat the finish was heavy on cinnamon, caramel and spice notes while with water this whiskey slowly disappeared with teasers of caramel, nectarines, peaches and mint.

    My only criticism of this whiskey is that I'm curious to see what this would taste like at a higher proof. I think that if this was 90 or 100 proof versus the current 80 proof it would probably get my top recommendation rating.

    With this whiskey and their gin and vodka, Dry Fly has established itself as one of the premier American artisan distillers and established conclusively that great distilled spirits are here to stay in Spokane Washington.At $42 a bottle and only distributed in Washington state, this whiskey may take some time to find, but if you do, your patience will be richly rewarded when you taste Dry Fly's wheat whiskey. Highly Recommended.

    About Dry Fly Washington Wheat Whiskey

    Originally Published: January 8, 2010
    Edited by Colleen Graham: September 2, 2015

    Disclosure: Review samples were provided by the manufacturer. For more information, please see our Ethics Policy.

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  • 04 of 05

    Dry Fly Vodka

    Dry Fly Washington Wheat Vodka - Small Batch Wheat Vodka from Washington State
    Distilled in small batches, the amazingly smooth wheat vodka from Dry Fly Distilling is a treasure in American-made spirits. Dry Fly Distilling

    Dry Fly Vodka was the most surprising of the three liquors from the distillery. I was expecting an "average" vodka, but much to my surprise this was by no means a "tasteless" vodka.

    This vodka has clear, soft flavor that is a combination of fruit and rose, which is likely due to its wheat base. This aspect of finding something (such as flavor) in a "flavorless" spirit is what, in my opinion, makes craft distillers such fun to explore.

    If you have tasted G'Vine Floraison Gin you will notice...MORE similarities between it and Dry Fly Vodka. There's a sweet rose bouquet to the vodka that made me double check that I hadn't accidentally poured the gin, and its something that I haven't tasted in a vodka so my only comparison is to G'Vine - which in itself is on that fine line of "is it gin or vodka." I enjoyed Dry Fly Vodka so much that I went back and found myself enjoying G'Vine more than I had initially.

    This is a vodka that is very pleasant, uplifting and noticeably has a wheat base, which is a nice change of pace. It is a smooth sipper, ideal for drinking straight and would be fantastic in fruit and herbal cocktails, especially those with a vibrant spring and summer feel.

    Tasting Notes

    The nose is a delicate fruity rose mixed with sweet grains. The palate is a darker wheat, ultra silky smooth, and delicately floral, while the finish is long, semi-peppery, and filled with botanicals.

    About Dry Fly Vodka

    Originally Published: March 26, 2010

    Disclosure: Review samples were provided by the manufacturer. For more information, please see our Ethics Policy.

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  • 05 of 05

    Dry Fly Washington Dry Gin

    Dry Fly Washington Dry Gin
    A fantastic example of American hand-crafted gin, Dry Fly Washington Dry Gin is a perfect option for almost any gin cocktail you could think of. Dry Fly Distilling

    Much like Dry Fly Vodka, the gin is distilled from Washington soft winter wheat, which brings a sweetness aspect to the spirit. The flavorings are also locally sourced and include juniper, dried Washington apple, mint, and hops.

    The overall profile is soft and this is perfect for those who enjoy the softer side of gins, especially those who typically prefer vodka. The mint gives this gin a refreshing taste even though it is barely noticeable and the apple brings in a hint of fruit that is a nice...MORE change of pace from gins that typically use dried orange. The odd thing, which is not necessarily a drawback, is that the juniper is rather transparent, making its strongest appearance in the finish.

    Dry Fly Gin is certainly a modern-style gin and one that some may say is crossing that fine line between gin and flavored vodka. I have tasted others that have violated the distinction to a greater degree and there are noticeable aspects of traditional gin in this one, which is nice to see.

    However, if you're seeking a gin for a classically flavored Martini this is not it. Instead, you will get a softer, more floral Martini. Where I think this gin can really shine is in an Aviation, Pegu Club, Chartreuse Martini, or any drink with a soft fruit and botanical flavor balance.

    Tasting Notes

    The nose is a sweet juniper and apple mix with the slightest hint of refreshing mint. The palate is soft, vibrant, and filled with a delicate balance of botanicals and apple. It finishes as gently as it began in a short, clean, and invigorating manner.

    About Dry Fly Washington Dry Gin

    Originally Published: March 26, 2010

    Disclosure: Review samples were provided by the manufacturer. For more information, please see our Ethics Policy.