I was tipped off by a mate that there was a whisky bar in Cardiff called Small Bar and that they had a decent selection (for Cardiff mind you). So, I got my ass down there and found some great whisky at very reasonable prices and a nice atmosphere. I’d tried all the whiskies before, but was very impressed they had Ledaig 1996…
So I decided to go for some Bourbon’s. First up was Rittenhouse BiB, a rye from Heaven Hill.
Rittenhouse Bottled in Bond Rye 50%
Nose: Lovely fragrant spices, clove, a good helping of oak, caramel apples, salted caramel, espresso. Peanut shells after a minute. There's a floral thing going on too.
Taste: Soft arrival and builds, very woody and spicy but never becomes too much. Softens again into the finish. Great caramel, salted hard toffee, coffee chocolate, pepper and clove, very slighty woody orange. Then orange chocolate and tobacco into the finish.
Finish: Short/Medium length. Really goes soft (insert erection joke here) with toffee fading fast, some oak stays.
Really liked this. This is actually the first American Whiskey I would buy with my own money. Enough complexity, good balance and at a good strength.
Colour: Light Bronze
Nose: Softly fragrant, freshly cut oak, wood sap, macadamia nuts, trail mix, floral honey.
Taste: Easy arrival but goes into very spicy territory, a bit harsh on the clove and liquorice, some black pepper, oaky tannin. I can't get behind it at all.
Finish: Medium length. The spices are staying with more clove and oak.
This was quite harsh compared to the rittenhouse bib. I would have expected the rye to be harsh and spicy and the wheater to be soft and smooth. With these two it was the other way round.
American Whiskey Reviews #27-#28
Whisky Network Reviews #496-#497
American Average: 69.5
Network Average: 74.3
Best Score: 92
Worst Score: 22
60-64 Just About OK
65-69 Ok to Good
75-79 Very Good
Full Disclosure Disclaimer: I currently work as a Brand Ambassador for Penderyn Distillery. The views expressed here are purely my own and do not reflect the views of Penderyn Distillery or The Welsh Whisky Company. I try to maintain as much objectivity as I can but feel free to take my reviews with as big a pinch of salt as you like. Furthermore, my rating scale is NOT based on a Parker type wine scoring scale or a school/college/university % or A-F grade score. You can find more on my scoring here. I apologise for any seemly low or 'bad' scores given with my system and am sorry I can't say only nice things. Please keep in mind that I am ethically compromised and am unable to produce 100% unbiased reviews.