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Bulleit Rye vs Old Forester Rye: Which Wins?

Discover the differences between Bulleit Rye vs Old Forester Rye in this in-depth comparison and decide which Rye Whiskey is better for You!

Bulleit Rye

NoseMint, cedar, vanilla, rye spice
PalateCaramel, spearmint, vanilla, rye spice
FinishRye spice, oak spice, old leather
Alcohol content90 proof (45% ABV)
How to drinkRocks, cocktails
Similar toWild Turkey Rye, Sazerac Rye

The Bulleit Rye is the spicy sibling of the Bulleit Bourbon as the additional rye grain in the mash makes it more punchy.

Nose has a soft minty note, followed by cedar wood, vanilla and rye spice.

Palate offers a blast of rye spiciness at first, followed by spearmint hints, caramel and a touch of vanilla.

The finish has a medium to long length, pleasantly warm, with more mint and a tad of charred oak.

Solid dram as there is nothing off-putting about it, just a classic rye whiskey.

Bulleit hits you with the rich spicy notes you expect to find in this type of whiskey, but overall this is a sweet and smooth whiskey and quite easy to sip.

If you feel it too spicy add large ice cubes avoiding dilution; that will make it easier to sip.

Where this whiskey shines is as mixer as the rich spice presence will add a nice kick to your favorite cocktail.

Overall, Bulleit Rye is a solid option, it won’t blow you away with any memorable tasting note but makes a good alternative for those looking for a “rye whiskey high in rye“ and is one of the best whiskies to make spicy cocktails.

There are few facts worth knowing about the Bulleit Rye:

  • Mash is comprised of 95% rye and 5% malted barley.
  • It does not carry an age statement but it is aged between five to six years in heavily charred, new American oak casks.
  • Earned the Double Gold and Gold Medals at the San Francisco World Spirits Competition.
  • Bulleit is owned by London-based Diageo, who also holds household names such as Johnnie Walker.

Old Forester 100 Proof Rye

NoseRye spice, spearmint, cinnamon
PalateRye spice, cinnamon, clove, vanilla, caramel
FinishMedium length, anise, clove, cinnamon
Alcohol content100 proof (50% ABV)
How to drinkRocks, cocktails
Similar toRittenhouse Rye, Sazerac Rye

I like the Old Forester 100 Rye as it carries 65% of rye in the mash providing a still moderate amount of rye while bottle at 100 proof (50% ABV) providing pleasant warmth to make the Old Fashioned more punchy.

The nose hits with rye spice at first, followed by spearmint and cinnamon.

It has a nice peppery bite at first, offering notes of cinnamon, clove and baking spices. There is vanilla and caramel sweetness coming behind the spice blast along a licorice note.

The finish is a bit sharp and fairly warm yet pleasant, rich in rye spice, oak and more cinnamon which is present from start to finish.

The Old Forester has some complexity, along some nice punchy flavors. It’s a bit burny but a drop of water is enough to make it sweeter and easier to drink.

In summary, the Old Forester 100 Proof Rye offers good value for the money, this is a pour full of character, moderately spicy, fairly warm and fully flavored.

It makes a good pour for an experienced aficionado capable of handling some bold flavors.

This is one the best whiskeys to mix and my favorite to make Manhattans and Old Fashioneds.

There are a few facts worth knowing about this whiskey:

  • Launched in 2019 with the first new mash bill in 150 years!
  • The mash is comprised of 65% rye, 20% malted barley, and 15% corn.
  • Earned Gold at the 2020 International Wine & Spirits Competition.

Bulleit Rye vs Old Forester Rye: Price comparison

Prices are approximate and stated in USD:

Bulleit Rye$23
Old Forester 100 Proof Rye$29

Bulleit Rye vs Old Forester Rye: Which is better?

The Old Forester is a more interesting whiskey

WhiskeyBulleit RyeOld Forester Rye
  • The Old Forester Rye is a more complex and tasty pour than the Bulleit Rye which is too basic while offering generic notes as it’s made at the same distillery where most rye whiskeys are made.
  • It hits softer with the spice letting you appreciate other rich notes and punchy flavors.
  • It’s a bit warmer, yet a drop or two of water, or a large ice ball are enough to tame it and make it easier to sip.

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