Connor’s Pick: High West Double Rye, $31
By simply being a high quality small batch straight rye for just over $30, High West’s Double Rye has already distinguished itself from its competition. The distillery is situated high in the Rocky Mountains and was the first licensed distillery in Utah since Prohibition. Despite most rye whiskey falling into either of two categories: expensive or underwhelming, this is thankfully neither. Its powerful, intoxicating nose belies the subtlety of its nuanced taste. This blend of both 2 year old and 16 year old rye has an undeniably spicy profile that brings to mind cinnamon and dark chocolate, but notes of vanilla and caramel help to maintain its surprising smoothness. Whether you’re making a Sazerac, a Manhattan or something of your own creation this weekend, your cocktail won’t disappoint after your purchase of this little secret weapon.