I love this forum. I post very little because I am a young whiskey drinker and have little to contribute, but I love to read Gillman and Chuck and all the other folks who post such interesting facts about what we love to drink.
By far the best thing I read about here has been Rittenhouse Rye BIB. For $18, the depth, sweetness, zing, and complexity of flavor is really astonishing to me. I bought it for Manhattans but I am finding I like it straight as well. The only thing I don't like about it is the plastic screw-top cap and the large black label, which makes it harder to see the wonderful deep cherry-wood red color. I solved this problem by pouring it into a sadly empty bottle of Michter's.
I like the Michter's straight rye too, but the color is far less intense, a light tawny, and the flavors are simpler and more pulled back. It's going to be hard for me to justify buying another bottle of Michter's for the same price that I could take home two Rittenhouse BIBs.
I had a chance to sample the Old Potrero Hotalings at Harris' steak house here in SF a while ago, and there is also a bottle sitting at Absinthe, but I would sure like to take some home with me. If anyone knows of a place in SF to pick up a bottle please do let me know. The OP 18th c. Spirit is very near to my heart as well; the pure sweet nutty maltiness, almost like eating a loaf of fresh sweet rye bread, is not for everyday, but when it is wanted there is nothing like it anywhere.
Also a great recommendation that I found here on this board was Elmer T. Lee bourbon. At least I think it's good; I keep buying it but my girlfriend seems to enjoy it at a pretty impressive clip! Maybe I will get to try some someday
I wouldn't have known about any of these things except for you folks at this board and I'm very grateful! (But quit talking about Eagle Rare 10, please. It's still my straight bourbon of choice, and I liked it better at $17 than I do at $33.)