Home » Featured, Tasting Notes

Tasting Notes – Rittenhouse 100 Rye Whiskey

Submitted by Tim Brice on February 25, 2011 – 11:49 pmNo Comment
I am always a little leery of anything described as a “good value.” In my experience, that phrase is often just another way of saying something is merely palatable or just okay while having the advantage of not being a burden on my  wallet. Although it is often described in such a manner, Rittenhouse 100 rye whiskey does not offend the drinker with low grade hooch and instead offers actual quality regardless of its price.  Rittenhouse 100 rye has the ability to shine not only in any number of cocktails but can also stand alone as a surprising sipping whiskey.  If you want to just focus on its price go ahead and call it a value.  Frankly at about $25USD it is hard to not focus on its price, that is until you taste it.
rittenhouse 100 bg 240x300 Tasting Notes – Rittenhouse 100 Rye Whiskey

Rittenhouse 100 Rye Whiskey

Before the prohibition era, rye whiskey was the American whiskey.  Born and bred in places like New York and Pennsylvania,  rye was the foundation for many of the most classic cocktails of the early age of the American mixed drink.  In fact, the noble Manhattan was built upon its broad shoulders.  It was prohibition that nearly killed off rye whiskey as a genre as Tennessee and Kentucky bourbon whiskies took the post prohibition responsibilities as the kings of American whiskies.  Names like Makers Mark, Knob Creek and Jack Daniels are now known the world over.

However, if you like a drink made with bourbon, I feel, you will love that same drink made with rye whiskey and specifically Rittenhouse 100.  Rye in particular and Rittenhouse specifically are spicier without adding more vaporous bite.  It’s not just about proof with rye, there is actually flavor there.

While I understand the hyperbole alert may go off on this statement, I believe wholeheartedly that in the building of ones home bar Rittenhouse 100 should be the first bottle purchased.  It should also be noted that the previous statement was made by an avid lover of quality gin.  Of course, you will need a nice bourbon, a mixed Irish and a sippable Scotch whisky as well.  It is this rye, in my opinion, that should be the building block that many of your cocktail explorations should be built upon.  And again, don’t let the low price fool you.

With the renewed interest of rye whiskey as a whole and being named at the “North American Whiskey of the Year” at the 2006 San Francisco World Spirits Competition, Rittenhouse 100 Rye Whiskey has increased its price by about $6USD a bottle.  It is a bold whiskey with a real kick that takes a single ice cube well.  It is full on the nose with hints of raw hardwood, caraway and black pepper.  On the tongue the Rittenhouse 100 is round and warm with a definite and noticeable rye tang with a very assertive black pepper spice on the finish.  The Rittenhouse 100 Rye is a master in the cocktail shaker and will show any of the classic turn of the 20th century whiskey based cocktails in their true original expression.    Unlike many bourbons and some other ryes, the Rittenhouse 100 is also very pleasantly not sugary sweet either.

I am clearly a fan of this whiskey and believe it has a place in any reasonably well stocked home bar.  You can always spend more but that doesn’t guarantee you a better mixed drink.  As someone who also loves a good single malt Scotch whisky, I also find I enjoy drinking the Rittenhouse 100 neat and for all the reasons it is different than a quality single malt.  It is aggressive and fully of attention grabbing spice that, from time to time, I quite enjoy.

The label notation “bottled in bond” means it was produced from a single producer in a single year from a single batch; all the characteristics that grant it the right to claim itself as such.  Regardless of what is on the label, it is what is in the bottle that ultimately counts.  The Rittenhouse 100 Rye Whiskey is a true cocktail lovers whiskey and one you shouldn’t be without.


article clipper Tasting Notes – Rittenhouse 100 Rye Whiskey

No related posts.

Tags: , ,

Leave a comment!

Add your comment below, or trackback from your own site. You can also subscribe to these comments via RSS.

Be nice. Keep it clean. Stay on topic. No spam.

This is a Gravatar-enabled weblog. To get your own globally-recognized-avatar, please register at Gravatar.