- 100 Proof
- 6 Years
One thing I have loved about New Riff is the approachability of their whiskeys from a pricing standpoint. Not only have they been able to keep their mainstay bourbons in ryes at a very reasonable price point, but even their special or limited releases have always come in lower than what I believe they could command at retail. Whether it was the Backsetter Rye, the Balboa Rye or the Winter Whiskey, they've always been right in that $45-55 price range. And while they're not bottled at cask strength, New Riff has a proclivity for keeping it bottled in bond and at 100 proof.
This malted rye proved to be no different. The price stayed the same, even when the age statement increased to 6 years! This one is certainly different from their typical rye products, though, as this is 100% malted rye. No secondary grains to be found. That was far from a deterrent for me, though, and I jumped at the opportunity to grab a bottle.
The nose on it was rich and sweet and spicy. I got spiced cherry and cloves. That seemed to match up perfectly with a rich brown sugar note that even leaned towards molasses at times. I didn't expect such a bold and rich aroma to come from my glass.
The flavor, much like the nose, also provided a nice mix of sweet and spicy, along with some added heat. The sweet part came across as caramel and brown sugar. It had that same level of the sweetness as the nose thanks to a noticeable amaretto note.
The spice was, not unexpectedly, a nice cinnamon spice, but certainly on the sweeter end. It was more like cinnamon candy than cinnamon sticks. It also had a bit more oak to it than expected. At 6 years, I wasn't expecting any at all. But, it just added another layer without detracting in any way.
The finish was what I liked most. For whatever reason, it was only on the finish that I got a nice, rich chocolate note. It wasn't sweet and it wasn't bitter. It was somewhere between milk chocolate and dark chocolate. On top of that, it also had some heat, almost like a chili pepper heat that went great with the chocolate.
Once again New Riff has produced a limited release whiskey that is different, fun, and most importantly, really damn good! I'm glad I happened across a bottle!