Discover the differences between Old Overholt Bonded vs Rittenhouse Rye in this in-depth comparison and decide which Rye Whiskey is better for You!
Old Overholt Bonded Rye
|Nose||Caramel, cherry blossom, vanilla, ethanol|
|Palate||Nutty, creamy, rye spice|
|Finish||Rye bread, cacao, peanuts and baking spice|
|Alcohol content||100 proof (50% ABV)|
|How to drink||Add water, rocks|
|Similar to||Old Overholt Rye, Knob Creek Rye|
There is alcohol on the nose, along caramel sweetness and cherry blossom.
On the palate, the Old Overholt has a good creamy texture. The first sips are hot and biting, although as you let it develop it becomes sweeter, a nutty hint shows up, along clove and baking spice.
The finish is surprisingly long, spicy, with cacao and peanut note and pleasantly warm.
The Old Overholt is a bit sharp on the nose, but drinks less hot than it smells. Flavor is surprisingly complex, with a good creamy body and has some interesting flavors.
It’s a bit hot but nothing that can’t be tamed with a splash of water making a rewarding sip. It reminds me in many ways to the Rittenhouse which I have in high regard.
There are a few facts worth knowing about the Old Overholt:
- Aged for 4 years in American oak casks.
- Bottled in bond means that the whiskey was produced in one distillation season, by one distiller, at one distillery.
- Gold Medal at the 2020 International Spirits Competition.
- Whisky Advocate’s Top 20 Whiskies of 2020.
- Legend says that JFK was fond of the Old Overholt.
- Jim Beam does not disclose how the mash bill is made but I assume the Old Overholt only carries around 51-60% of rye due to the low spice.
- Crafted at the Jim Beam Distillery.
|Nose||Rye spice, vanilla, oak|
|Palate||Ripe fruit, nutty, citrus|
|Finish||Long, Citrus, pecan|
|Alcohol content||100 proof (50% ABV)|
|How to drink||Rocks, cocktails|
|Similar to||Pikesville Rye, Sazerac Rye|
The Rittenhouse Rye only carries just above 51% rye in the mash providing a modest rye spice hit.
Light on the nose with vanilla, oak, spice, a citrus note coming behind and just a whiff of ethanol.
Palate is fruity up-front, low in rye spice, with a nice nutty hint and citrus notes along a good hit of baking spice.
Finish is surprisingly long and buttery, providing good warmth throughout.
This is not the smoothest 100 proof whiskey as it burns a bit, but the overall flavor profile makes up for it. Adding a dash of water tunes down the Rittenhouse Rye making it easier to sip.
Overall, the Rittenhouse is not too complex and a bit burny, low in rye spice, great quality and flavorful making an easy drinker and an even better mixer as the high proof will add a nice kick to your favorite cocktail
This whiskey is a no-brainer due to its well tasting flavor profile and it affordable price making it the top cheap Rye Whiskey to buy!
There are a few facts worth knowing about the Rittenhouse Rye:
- Aged for 4 years in charred oak barrels.
- “North American Whiskey of the Year” at the San Francisco World Spirits Competition.
- Earned a score of 94 points from Wine Enthusiast.
- “Best North American Whisky” by Whisky Magazine.
- “Best Buy Whisky of the Year” by Whisky Advocate.
Old Overholt vs Rittenhouse Rye: Price comparison
Prices are approximate and stated in USD:
|Old Overholt Bonded Rye||$26|
Old Overholt Bonded vs Rittenhouse Rye: Which is better?
Tough call between two of the best in its type
- There is no right answer as they are both quite good offering many features in common such as a satisfying 100 proof, a good creamy body, both were bottled in bond, low rye presence in the mash, the same aging length and both are champs in terms of value for the money.
- Knowing that JFK was fond of the Old Overholt is something nice to know but if I had to choose between these two I would keep the Rittenhouse, but believe me when I say that is a tough call.
- I like the Rittenhouse as it has some tasting notes that are uncommon at this price range making it a value play.
- These are solid unpretentious drams worth sipping side by side so you reach your own conclusions… cheers!
I am a bar and liquor shop owner in Oaxaca, Mexico where I have tasted hundreds of different spirits; perhaps more than I should!