The High West Barreled Manhattan is made from two parts of High West's Double Rye! Whiskey, one part sweet red vermouth, and two dashes of Angostura bitters for every 2.5 ounce serving. It was then aged in a 2-yearold rye whiskey barrel for 120 days (Batch # 1 aged for 90 Days). The Vermouth was a learning experience for us because we can't just purchase any vermouth we want from the liquor store and dump it into the barrel. Its illegal to repackage liquor that's already had the Federal Excise Tax paid for. So we had to buy bulk vermouth wholesale. While it's not Carpano Antica Formula Vermouth (my favorite), it's still pretty good. The addition of the vermouth lowers the pH and the percent alcohol by volume - both increasing the break down of the oak's hemicellulose, increasing the wood sugars that dissolve into the "cocktail" inside. Because a barrel "breaths", there's also some oxidation of the "cocktail." This mellows out the sharpness of the bitters and vermouth, making what we think is a darn fine elixir. We hope you enjoy tasting this as much as we did making it.
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