Laphroaig wrote:...I'm curious if you think RhR is a superior beverage / whiskey or if you'd say on "rye" characteristics it's supreme? My feeling is it is a superior product, but not based on a "this is rye" concept. Rittenhouse certainly is not as sharp as some other "this is rye", ryes. Floating it on a cocktail might not leave much, if any distinguishable rye characteristics at all.
JMHO of course.
Agreed, we are largely in agreement here. And yet, I have tasted some whiskey (Old Belmont bourbon) that was distilled in 1899 and bottled in 1918, so 19 years old. While I think, generally, whiskey was aged much less 100 and more years ago, ultra-aged whiskey certainly was NOT unknown. Conversely, I've participated in several discussions of whether or not we're living in a 'golden age' of American whiskey, what with the glut from the sales slumps of the '70s and early-'80s providing product for well-aged, single-barrel, and other premium bottlings. I think, as we enter a period of tight supply vs. demand, we may ALL retroactively agree so soon enough.
Regarding the Rittenhouse vis-a-vis Pikesville, the former is more in what I would call the 'Kentucky rye' style -- richer, and more floral -- than the Pikesville which, while now made in Kentucky, is more of the Eastern Pennsylvania/Maryland motif, which tends to be lighter in body, grain-centric and spicy. I've enjoyed some very fine Pikesville distilled shortly after Prohibition ended, and currently have a Continental/Publicker bottle of the original Rittenhouse BIB -- both are certainly of a different taste profile and style than the Kentucky brands today.