New Riff Kentucky Bourbon Whiskey
- USA, 750ml
A Kentucky Straight Bourbon from the ever-wonderful New Riff! On the nose, butterscotch rounding into fresh oak, with hints of vanilla and rye spice. To taste, broad, fulsome mouthfeel, leading to a sweeter vanilla accent, before a gathering of rye spices (clove, cinnamon, mint, dark berry) into the finish. Long, rye-led finish, with brambly red-black fruits amid white pepper and clove.
- Distillery: New Riff Distillery
- Type: Straight Bourbon Whiskey
- Region: Kentucky, USA
- Alcohol: 50%
- Volume: 750ml
- Goes with: Neat or over ice
New Riff Distilling’s core Bourbon expression is a genuinely high-rye, full bodied whiskey offering savoury, spicy character. Building upon America’s 1897 Bottled-in-Bond Act—already the highest quality standard for aged spirits in the world—New Riff Bourbon is Bottled In Bond Without Chill Filtration. Featuring a mash bill of non-GMO grains at 65% corn,30% rye, and 5% malted barley, it represents a new riff on Kentucky’s most hallowed whiskey traditions. Aged four years in 53-gallon toasted and charred new oak barrels, there are no shortcuts taken in our production. All New Riff whiskeys are made with the full sour mash Kentucky Regimen; all carry an age statement, and are always bottled without chill filtration.
"We are a new riff on an old tradition, that tradition or theme being Kentucky Bourbon. Founded in 2014 by Ken Lewis, a visionary Kentucky liquor retailer and entrepreneur, New Riff is led by a team of corporate refugees ranging from craft beer to politics and more. New Riff crafts a range of whiskeys—Bourbon, Rye, and eventually Malted Rye and a host of specialty recipes—as well as Kentucky Wild Gin. Our mission is simple: to someday be counted among the world’s great small distilleries. Becoming one of the great small distilleries of the world is a long term play, with no exact ring to win, or title to be declared.
We are independently owned by one family, and that independence, the freedom from outside pressures and interests has allowed us to make an unforeseen declaration for quality: for perhaps the first time since the inception of the Bottled in Bond Act in 1897, a Kentucky sour mash whiskey distillery has committed itself exclusively to that quality standard, the world’s highest. And we proudly lift that bar even higher by bottling without chill filtration. We stand behind this combination of classic American entrepreneurship and ingenuity; passion and knowledge born from one of the world’s great spirit regions; and a talented team individually committed to doing things the right way.
We are inspired by the great Bourbon makers of the past and the wider tradition in Kentucky—but we will play our own riff, on the Sour Mash Kentucky Regimen, both with our standard of Bottled in Bond Without Chill Filtration, and through applying that production regimen to wholly new styles of Kentucky whiskey. Yet we also observe the tremendous whiskey history of Greater Cincinnati, and we inhale that rye-rich backstory as well. At the end of the day, despite playing a free hand to improvise and create Kentucky whiskey anew, we uphold above all else the time-honoured Sour Mash Kentucky Regimen: we believe it’s a fantastic way to make whiskey, fully the equal of the traditions of the world’s great whiskeys." New Riff Distillery
A FEW WORDS FROM THE FOUNDER
"Here at New Riff, we are nothing if not independent spirits. In fact, we might just admit we are downright “cranky” and stubborn on the subject of our independence. We are 100% Kentucky family owned, by a single family; we have no partners, no investors, no other shareholders.
Sure, it’s been tough at times going alone. But this way we have the freedom to pursue quality with no short term thinking or compromises. Freedom to innovate and collaborate, riff on the old and redefine the new. Pride and passion fuel this place; we pursue our mission to become one of the great small distilleries of the world and freedom from the “strings” and pressures of outsiders who are interested primarily in cash or cashing out is our rocket fuel to make whiskey like it’s the last thing we’ll ever do.
Yes, we’re stubbornly independent. Determined to take the high road, which is usually the hard road, of quality above all else. After all, every bottle we make is a distillation of who we are, a representation of our pride and the incredibly high standards that are part of our DNA. We don’t even have to think about the possibility of letting you down because we would never, never let ourselves fall short of our own incredibly high standards.
As the founder of New Riff, my greatest pleasure has been putting together an amazing team of dedicated, career employees who share my vision that to make great whiskey you have to have a great workplace culture. Having from inception a brilliant master distiller consultant/teacher on the team, Larry Ebersold, afforded me the luxury to hire people with the “right stuff” from diverse backgrounds and experience outside of the distilling world. So our head distiller and our logistics manager had extensive brewing/fermentation experience in industrial settings; our general manager ran a west coast non profit (adept at “herding cats”); our sales manager sold high end Italian wine to national accounts, I, myself, was a 40 year retail alcoholic beverage veteran, and so on.
Our minds were open: eager to learn and yet with the experience and self confidence to carefully innovate all within a work culture that nurtures excellence and the insatiable drive for quality." Ken Lewis, Founder & President, New Riff Distillery
- Double Gold - 2019 World Spirits Competition
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