Lost Lantern’s Spring Collection Celebrates the Midwest

Seven new bottles showcase the finest rye, wheat and bourbon whiskeys from the heartland

March 27, 2024 12:55 pm
Lost Lantern Spring 2024 Midwest Collection
The 7 bottles in Lost Lantern's Spring 2024 Midwest Collection
Lost Lantern

What we’re drinking: Lost Lantern Spring 2024 Collection

Where it’s from: Co-founded by Nora Ganley-Roper and Adam Polonski, this independent bottler from Vermont offers unique, limited-edition releases from American craft distilleries, all under one label (we’re fans). The expressions are cask strength, non-chill-filtered and with no color added. 

Why we’re drinking these: For their inaugural foray into a regional collection, Lost Lantern is focusing on the Midwest. “That area has been one of the unsung heroes of American whiskey,” Polonski says. “Texas and the Pacific Northwest are getting attention, but what we’ve found is that really high-quality stuff is coming out of the Midwest. There are some consistent flavors across the region because of the climate.”

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“There’s a mouthfeel in these whiskeys, a creaminess of the palate from the cooler climate that we’ve seen across the distilleries,” Ganley-Roper says. 

The release features seven bottlings, including Far-Flung Rye, a multi-distillery blend of rye whiskies from across the Midwest and six single casks from distilleries across the region. The collection includes Lost Lantern’s first-ever whiskies from Wisconsin and Illinois.

“I find a lot of people from the Midwest don’t tend to go out and talk about how everything they’re doing is incredible,” Polonski says. “They’re just quietly making amazing whiskey. So we wanted to go out and champion them.”

Lost Lantern Far-Flung Rye
Lost Lantern Far-Flung Rye, a standout of the Midwest collection
Lost Lantern

How they taste:

  • Far-Flung Rye (121.6 Proof): A blend of straight rye whiskeys, ranging from four to nine years old, from five distilleries (Cedar Ridge, Middle West Spirits, Starlight, Tom’s Foolery Distillery and Wollersheim). A mix of sweet caramel, cocoa, tobacco, plenty of herbal notes and a hint of mint with a creamy mouthfeel, this is a standout. 
  • Starlight Distillery Indiana Straight Bourbon Single Cask (118.7 Proof): This is a straight bourbon whiskey (60% corn, 20% malted barley, 10% rye, 10% wheat) aged for six years, including two in Vermont. It also marks the rare Starlight that hasn’t undergone a cask finishing; this one is quite nutty and spicy, with plenty of cherry and oak spice.
  • Wollersheim Distillery Wisconsin Straight Bourbon Single Cask: 131.2 Proof): A five-year-old straight bourbon whiskey made from 66% corn, 22% rye and 12% malted barley, all locally grown. The roasted corn and rice spice mix nicely with the creamy mouthfeel, and there’s plenty of chocolate and orange on the palate.
  • FEW Spirits Illinois Straight Bourbon Single Cask (124.6 Proof): A straight bourbon whiskey distilled from 70% corn, 20% rye and 10% malted barley aged for five years; this feels a bit brighter and fruitier than the other expressions, with plenty of vanilla and baking spices.
  • Tom’s Foolery 9-Year-Old Ohio Straight Rye Single Cask (116.5 Proof): Aged for nine years (the oldest whiskey Lost Lantern has released), this straight rye whiskey (70% winter rye, 30% malted rye) is full of oak spice but also a lot of lemon and grassy notes. 
  • Middle West Ohio Straight Rye Single Cask (126 Proof): This four-year-old, four-grain straight rye whiskey is made with dark pumpernickel rye grain. It’s rich with hints of mint, leather and milk chocolate. 
  • Cedar Ridge Iowa Straight Wheat Single Cask (123.1 Proof): A wheat whiskey made from 100% malted white winter wheat aged for six years, there’s a lot of cherry, vanilla, cola and cinnamon here.  

Fun fact: While some Lost Lantern releases sell out in a day or as little as an hour (like their Tequila Matured Balcones Single Malt), a few of their esoteric releases take longer to find an audience. “We did a Westward Whiskey that was a chardonnay-finished single malt,” Ganely-Roper says. “I loved it, but I think it scared some people.”

Where to buy: The Midwest collection will be available at the new Lost Lantern Tasting Room in Vergennes, VT, and online at LostLanternWhiskey.com and Seelbachs.com beginning March 27. It’s also available at select retailers in New York and California.


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