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View Full Version : Bulleit Rye vs "Baby" Saz



JayMonster
06-23-2012, 20:29
My rye experience is admittedly weak. Heck, I wasn't even sure. I would care for it at all considering until recently I leaned more towards wheaters and low rye bourbon.

The two I know I like are in totally different classes though, Saz 18 and Bulleit Rye.

But this got me to thinking about Baby Saz which is more comparably aged (as far I know) and priced (at least here in NJ), so I was wondering how you thought the two stacked up.

Luna56
06-23-2012, 21:22
Go get yourself a Baby Saz at the earliest opportunity. It's just plain wonderful.

My rye experience is also somewhat scant but I don't think you can go wrong with Baby Saz. I like the Bulleit ok, but it's in its own little zone, not much like what I'd consider to be a traditional rye. Haven't had the Saz 18 but I'm a big fan of the mighty, mighty Handy and I think the Baby Saz holds up respectably.

Let us know what you discover.

Cheers!

mosugoji64
06-23-2012, 21:50
What he said! Baby Saz is very good. Bulleit and the other LDI-sourced ryes are unique due to their very high (95%) rye content. Saz is softer, but there's no mistaking it for anything but a rye. You might also consider WTR 101 if you can still find it in your area. It leans a little more to the bourbon side than the other two, but still offers that great rye kick on the finish.

JayMonster
06-23-2012, 22:51
What he said! Baby Saz is very good. Bulleit and the other LDI-sourced ryes are unique due to their very high (95%) rye content. Saz is softer, but there's no mistaking it for anything but a rye. You might also consider WTR 101 if you can still find it in your area. It leans a little more to the bourbon side than the other two, but still offers that great rye kick on the finish.

NJ is so far a very Rye challenged State. The only regularly stocked Rye is Beam in most places, though the Bulleit is showing up more and the Baby Saz seems to appear a couple of bottles at a time. One place got Redemption, but that is (if I have my facts straight) just LDI aged half as long as the the Bulleit, but costs more. No WT (not even the lower proof), no Russel Reserve, no Pikesville... you get the idea.

I'm hopeful that Beam can get Knob Creek Rye on the shelves here, but at nearly twice the price of the Bulleit, I am only cautiously optimistic right now.

mosugoji64
06-23-2012, 23:38
In that case I would say that Baby Saz and Bulleit are excellent examples. The Saz will give you what I think most would consider a typical rye profile while Bulleit will provide the extreme version. Start with Saz and enjoy the journey!

Luna56
06-23-2012, 23:52
In that case I would say that Baby Saz and Bulleit are excellent examples. The Saz will give you what I think most would consider a typical rye profile while Bulleit will provide the extreme version. Start with Saz and enjoy the journey!

Excellent advice. Go with the Baby Saz, don't overthink it. It is much beloved here, and for good reason. The Saz is a sort of benchmark. Get to know this stuff before you complicate matters too much. I can almost guarantee that you will love it.

Cheers!

sutton
06-24-2012, 05:16
NJ is so far a very Rye challenged State. The only regularly stocked Rye is Beam in most places, though the Bulleit is showing up more and the Baby Saz seems to appear a couple of bottles at a time. One place got Redemption, but that is (if I have my facts straight) just LDI aged half as long as the the Bulleit, but costs more. No WT (not even the lower proof), no Russel Reserve, no Pikesville... you get the idea.


That said, the only Saz 18 and both THHandy's I have I found in NJ, just sitting on the shelf. Never saw one up here; always allocated. I think it is just luck ... right place, right time.

darylld911
06-24-2012, 05:54
I've never tried the Baby Saz either, but last fall I picked up the Saz 18 and THHandy (2011 editions) - and while I LOVED the Handy, I was unimpressed with the Saz 18 (at least at that price point). Because of that, I've steered away from the Baby Saz thinking that it would be similar to the Saz 18 but maybe even (gasp) lighter or smoother. I prefer bourbon over rye, but enjoy several other ryes (RR 6 yr, Willet 4 yo). Maybe the 2011 Saz 18 was an off year?

cigarnv
06-24-2012, 11:54
The Saz is the way to go. Bulliet tastes like mouthwash to me.. Lots of int.

JayMonster
06-24-2012, 12:10
The Saz is the way to go. Bulliet tastes like mouthwash to me.. Lots of int.

That is interesting. I nearly swore off all Heaven Hill products because my one (and only) bottle of EW Black tasted like Scope. But I got literally NO minty taste on the Bulleit Rye... at all.

WhiskyToWhiskey
06-24-2012, 17:18
I just bought the baby saz 2 days ago, and I really like it. Here in Ontario the only straight ryes available lately were Rittenhouse BIB and baby Saz. I didn't care for the Rittenhouse. One Canadian whisky I enjoy that's cheap is Alberta Springs 10yo, and it's said to be 100% rye.

Clavius
06-24-2012, 22:53
IMHO "Baby" Saz makes a killer Manhattan. Unfortunately my bottle is near empty and the stuff is next to impossible to find here in the Bluegrass.

MacinJosh
06-25-2012, 13:54
These are night and day different pours on the palate. I'm 100% confident I could identify them 10/10 times blind.

So it just comes down to what you're looking for in your glass.

Personally, I enjoy them both when the mood strikes. Both have a place on my shelf.

timd
06-25-2012, 18:29
That is interesting. I nearly swore off all Heaven Hill products because my one (and only) bottle of EW Black tasted like Scope. But I got literally NO minty taste on the Bulleit Rye... at all.

Wow... I get more mint on LDI rye than from a julep!

That said, it's not bad - just a unique profile. If you can dig up Willet 4-5yr Rye at CS, then grab that... easily worth the $10 premium over the Bulleit.

sailor22
06-26-2012, 07:14
I had given up on the LDI stuff because I got so much mint every time but recently had a 5yr Willett Rye that I assume is from the same LDI stocks that last years 4yr was from and it didn't have any mint. The 4yr was like a mint mouth wash.

JayMonster
06-26-2012, 11:01
You guys have me scared now. I was going to buy a case while it was still on sale, and but I will get another bottle or two instead, I just in case my bottle was a fluke.

AaronWF
06-26-2012, 16:48
What he said! Baby Saz is very good. Bulleit and the other LDI-sourced ryes are unique due to their very high (95%) rye content.

I think that the complete lack of corn in the LDI ryes is even more telling than the fact that they're 95% rye. We expect corn from American whiskey, and when it doesn't make a showing, it can be jarring.


If you can dig up Willet 4-5yr Rye at CS, then grab that... easily worth the $10 premium over the Bulleit.

This is a no-brainer. Same juice unchillfiltered and at CS.


I had given up on the LDI stuff because I got so much mint every time but recently had a 5yr Willett Rye that I assume is from the same LDI stocks that last years 4yr was from and it didn't have any mint. The 4yr was like a mint mouth wash.

You know, I have seen Willet ryes around here that were actually distilled in Kentucky. I haven't tried one, but I've heard they have a very different profile from the LDIs. I wonder where they're from...

Trey Manthey
06-29-2012, 13:38
Baby Saz all the way. I may be spoiled in NOLA as stock is always plentiful at $20 or so. I think the resurgence of the Sazerac cocktail has contributed to shelves always being full.

unclebunk
06-29-2012, 14:57
And the Baby Saz comes in a cool bottle too! I'll be firing up the grill momentarily and plan on a few ginger ale & ryes to keep me wet while I'm out there flipping chicken.

JayMonster
06-29-2012, 15:06
Baby Saz all the way. I may be spoiled in NOLA as stock is always plentiful at $20 or so. I think the resurgence of the Sazerac cocktail has contributed to shelves always being full.

Wow, I will have to keep this in mind when I go to NOLA in November. I may be packing some SAZ to bring back home.

ebo
06-29-2012, 17:42
I have 3/4 of a bottle of Baby Saz that I've had for more than a year. I'm reluctant to kill it off because I can't find it on the shelf any more in Ohio.

I can't say that I prefer one rye over another. It just seems to be a matter of what I want on a given evening. I've been drinking quite a bit of KC Rye lately.

Flyfish
07-01-2012, 05:53
That is interesting. I nearly swore off all Heaven Hill products because my one (and only) bottle of EW Black tasted like Scope. But I got literally NO minty taste on the Bulleit Rye... at all.

Now, that is interesting! My bottle of Bulleit Rye is just loaded with mint. Because you easily find the mint in EW, we'll assume that your palate is OK. And BR is not a single barrel, so how to account for the variation?

JayMonster
07-16-2012, 18:35
Now, that is interesting! My bottle of Bulleit Rye is just loaded with mint. Because you easily find the mint in EW, we'll assume that your palate is OK. And BR is not a single barrel, so how to account for the variation?

Well, I tried it again, picked up another bottle... and... No Mint! Just to be sure, I had a pour of Pure Kentucky, which has a little mint on the finish, and sure enough I could taste it in the Pure Kentucky, but still nothing in the Bulleit Rye.

MacinJosh
07-16-2012, 19:04
Well, I tried it again, picked up another bottle... and... No Mint! Just to be sure, I had a pour of Pure Kentucky, which has a little mint on the finish, and sure enough I could taste it in the Pure Kentucky, but still nothing in the Bulleit Rye.

Interesting. I've yet to have a sample of Bulleit Rye that isn't loaded with mint and evergreen with a Pine-Sol like nose. You get none of those notes?

ebo
07-16-2012, 19:16
Interesting. I've yet to have a sample of Bulleit Rye that isn't loaded with mint and evergreen with a Pine-Sol like nose. You get none of those notes?
I might, but not to the extent that some of you seem to get........ but I like it. :grin:

Smithford
07-17-2012, 16:42
I've only been able to sample Bulleit Rye twice, both times in bars (it's not distributed yet where I live). The first time was from a freshly opened bottle. It tasted like Wrigley's Doublemint, but not like the first chew - more like after you've been chewing for 5 or 10 minutes and most of the sweetness had gone. Very dry and spirity - unique.

The next time I sampled it, it was the very last shot from a bottle that had been opened for a few months. With aeration (and possibly some evaporation), I found a lot less mint and more of that floral/violet/lavender character that I get from the other young LDI ryes (it's predominant in Willett, but also present in Rendezvous). Some here have described it as "dill" or "pickle juice" and I see where they're coming from, but for me it translates as violet. Like C. Howard's (Chowards?) scented gum. But I didn't detect it in the freshly opened bottle.

I just recently finished a bottle of Baby Saz, which is a much sweeter Rye. I've never detected any mint in that, but did very briefly, about two thirds of the way through the bottle, find a slight hint of that floral note.

For me, the Rye spectrum begins with Rittenhouse BIB and ends with Bulleit. Ritt is sweet and bourbony, with only a hint of Rye spice and Bulleit is dry, spicy and herbal. Sazerac sits right in the middle.





separated at birth?

13896 13895

White Dog
07-18-2012, 07:46
Love the photo comparison. There is a bit of minty green on many Rye labels. Saz 18, WT, Willett, Bulleit.

JayMonster
07-18-2012, 15:27
Went back to this well one more time, and yes, I finally detected a bit of mint... but I think Smithford described it. Background mint... certainly not the overwhelming mint others described... but the mint was there. (Fortunately, it was in proportions that are tolerable, and not the Scope like quality of Evan Williams Black).