New Riff Bottled-In-Bond Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey (750ml)

SKU #1426429 Whisky Advocate

Outer quote mark Fresh and delicate on the nose, with stone fruit—especially peaches—white pepper, orange Creamsicle, and spice. A generous oak backbone provides the foundation for plums, nectarines, black pepper, clove, chamomile tea, and piney cedar that sweeps into a dry oak, cocoa, iced-tea finish. Although a bit hot at times, the balance and array of flavors is an outstanding coup for this young distillery. (SSB winter 2018) Inner quote mark

K&L Notes

Quite frankly, there isn't a project in Kentucky as exciting as New Riff if you're a classic Bourbon fan. Ken Lewis and Jay Erisman and their incredible team have set out to make KY Bourbon and Rye in a very traditional manner, but with more flexibiltiy than the big boys in the state so they have the ability to riff on those classics for incredible special releases. The distillery is committed to their core products always being Bottled-In-Bond - the world's strictest legal standard for spirits production. They've actually even gone a step further and engrained in their core production values the decision to never chill filter. They're all about maximizing flavor. The flagship BIB bourbon is a high rye mashbill that brings a punchy spice without sacrificing that sweet caramel and vanilla profile that has made Bourbon such a beloved beverage. The quality is off the charts, everything is well aged (4 years is the minimum ever released by the distillery), the vibe is fun, and the price is right. In short - New Riff is the best new distillery to open in KY in decades.

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Price: $39.99

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Product Reviews:

By: Jackson Lee | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 10/3/2019 | Send Email
Herbaceous, earthy, yet sweet on the nose, the bottled in bond bourbon gives off notes of sarsaparilla, fennel frond, fresh cut grass, demerara sugar and candy corn. At 100 proof, this is way too easy to sip. It slyly sneaks onto your palate with a supreme smoothness and welcoming sweet notes of dulce de leche, diet cola, and brown sugar. The finish adds a nice spice and a little heat to balance everything out while there’s still a note of rock candy. A solid bottled-in-bond bourbon for the price.

By: David Othenin-Girard | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 9/26/2019 | Send Email
Easily one of the most exciting new distillers in KY, and we're proud to be the partner for these incredible products. This isn't your run-of-the-mill craft distillery, this is a proper, modern Kentucky style distillery. It's not a tiny capacity, working on experiments and trying to reinvent the wheel. They're just cranking out great whisky and we're along for the ride. The flagship BIB bourbon is extremely well balanced and proof positive that craft whiskey doesn't need to be old to be delicious. I'm not sure if they're heat-cycling these warehouses, but they are rubbing all the edges of this little gem. A soft nose of sweet tea, deep oak, caramelized orange peel, and hints of earthy maltiness. On the palate it's somewhat tropical, with a strawberry candy front palate building into a strong spice toward the back. It's not a slouch and definitely has a spice backbone that's going to suit lovers of Four Roses or Wild Turkey just fine. Despite the name, New Riff isn't new school at all. Just great classic bourbon from an independent distillery that we're unbelievably lucky to be a part of.

By: Jeffrey Jones | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 8/25/2019 | Send Email
This is a medium bodied bourbon with a wonderful sweet nose with caramel notes. In the mouth there are caramel and honey flavors with a pleasing dry finish. I though that it was very good with and without the addition of water. It will be great alone or in cocktails.

By: Neal Fischer | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 8/20/2019 | Send Email
Balsa wood, incense, and musky cologne emerge from the glass. Cinnamon, clove, and other earthy spices come to the fore and dominate the nose of this bottled-in-bond Bourbon that's woody and peppery enough to make one wonder if it's a Rye. There's just enough caramel to keep things in Bourbon territory though with freshly sliced vanilla bean and nutmeg creeping in and making the nose a bit more rich and voluptuous. It's woodier on the palate with more bold spice character as well. This is definitely a great whiskey for lovers of high-rye Bourbons.

By: Andrew Whiteley | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 8/20/2019 | Send Email
The importance of what New Riff has done can't be stated in a single review. The true magnitude their accomplishments can only be understood when looking at the larger picture of the American whiskey industry and where they fit into it. As with any whiskey though - the story isn't fully told until you get it in your glass and judge for yourself. I love the combination of richness and spice in the bourbon. In particular, the high (30%) rye content really amps up the experience. While the sweet vanillans and caramels of the barrel create a base for the whiskey, it's the high toned peaks of rye aromatics that make the pour sing. Pepper and cinnamon abound, but the touch of dried alfalfa adds the savor needed to make it a complete drinking experience, not just a sweet and spice bomb. The finish lingers, both long and well rounded. Perfect at 100 proof, as required by the Bottled-In-Bond Act of 1897, you have many options for enjoying this one. Neat is never a bad idea, but the savory notes play extremely well with vermouth if you want to mix up some cocktails. There is enough punch that a little water or ice isn't going to dilute you past the point of intense aromatics and flavor either.

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