Rittenhouse Straight Rye Whisky is an affordable rye whisky which I originally bought for making cocktails – I've always enjoyed it in a Manhattan or Sazerac (a refreshing 'New Orleans variation' of a whiskey cocktail), where the 50% ABV holds up well.
But it's also a well-regarded rye on its own, and worth trying straight to appreciate its spicy flavoursome character.
Rittenhouse Straight Rye Whisky 100 Proof
Nose: Treacle, maple syrup, lots of vanilla pods and some peppercorn.
Palate: Smooth, slightly viscous, spicy (pepper and cinnamon). There's orange rind and cinnamon sticks, with a dusting of icing sugar and a fair amount of oak. Simply, but tasty.
Finish: Medium to long in length, peppery.
Rating: 88/100. No-one's suggesting this is an earth-shatteringly complex whisky - it's not. It's a simple rye done very well. All the flavours you want in a rye are there, braced against a bold, solid backbone. The ABV feels spot-on and it serves well as a neat dram, or a great base for a booze-forward cocktail.
Details: 50% ABV, A$83