Blackened Rye the Lightning: A Rant

Readers of my previous article, Battle of the Drams, will recall that I mentioned that a separate article would be coming regarding Metallica’s Blackened Rye the Lightning whiskey.  I wanted to separate my thoughts about this specific whiskey from the rest of the group because I wanted to share my disappointment with it more thoroughly.  In order to understand what I mean, let me share a little bit of my life story with you.

I grew up in a family that loved music.  My parents played music for me when I was in the womb.  They sang me to sleep when I was a young child.  I was surrounded by it at all times.

The music that I grew up with would be familiar to many Americans, or any around the world who enjoy what would be considered Soft Rock or Classical Rock today.  Bands like The Beatles, Jimmy Buffett, or the songs of Billy Joel or Sir Elton John formed my early life experience with music.  To a young person who can’t fully appreciate the lyrics and the story of such music, the songs can be rather tame, smooth sounding, and limited in expression.

And then I became a teenager and I listened to one of my older brother’s CDs:  The Black Album by Metallica.  It.  Absolutely.  Blew.  My.  Balls.  Off.  I couldn’t get enough.  I listened to every album by this new (to me) band that I could.  At that time, I had access to The Black Album, Master of Puppets, and Ride the Lightning.

For my birthday (I think I was 14?), my mother let me pick out a CD at the record store, and so I chose a Metallica CD that I didn’t have, called Garage, Inc.  I listened to it the moment I got home.  I put it in my CD player, and Free Speech for the Dumb, the first song on the album, played.  My mother was in earshot, and heard the lyrics that start at about a minute into the first song.  Instantly, she burst into my room and shut the CD player off and made me promise that I would not listen to the CD.  I promised (with a figurative fingers crossed behind my back).  That night, I put the CD into my portable CD player and listened to it with headphones on after my parents had gone to bed.  Whiskey In The Jar became an instant favorite of mine.  It’s a favorite of mine to this day.  Indeed, our internal spreadsheet where we tracked bands with whiskies to choose from, is titled Whiskey In The Jar-O (after the original by [maybe?] The Dubliners).

To say that I was excited to learn that one of my all-time favorite bands had a whiskey on the market that ***may*** be enhanced by one of my favorite albums of all-time would be an understatement.  When the Abov Team agreed, at my not-so-subtle insistence, that we do a battle of the bands for our next whiskey tasting, there was no struggle within me, I knew what my pick would be for a whiskey to taste.  There was never any doubt.

I wanted to my eyes to glaze over the ent(rance of) the Sandman, to smell The Unforgiven, to be convinced that No(whiskey) Else Matters…In short, I wanted it to blow my balls off like my first experience with The Black Album.  I must write to you dear reader that I was disappointed.  While the rye that Metallica has produced is a fine rye in and of itself, it doesn’t live up to the gimmick promised.  I can’t report to you that I could taste any difference that the music applied to the whiskey.  The rye wasn’t ryier, the whiskey wasn’t whiskier, heck, even the color wasn’t blacker.  Unfortunately, it’s sad but true, Metallica is playing holier than thou with this release.

Still, if you care to learn more about this offering, please check out the website that can explain the product at  Don’t just take my word for it.  Check it out yourself.  Tell me if this is the (rant) that failed in your review of the whiskey in the app.

Sip Confidently,


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Scroll to Top