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DSP 354 vs DSP 1 Rittenhouse - How's the new stuff?


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I have a bottle of each and have tried them blind. I can tell a difference but my GF wont tell me which is which. I asked her not to in order for me to try to tell the differences. I can pick "a" or "b" but cannot reliably call the 354 vs the 1.

Just for reference, I am a rookie.

Jim

No doubt they are different. The real question is did you like one more than the other? I think I was in the same boat - I could definitely identify differences, but I hadn't drank enough 354 to know which was which.

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No doubt they are different. The real question is did you like one more than the other? I think I was in the same boat - I could definitely identify differences, but I hadn't drank enough 354 to know which was which.

That's the key! Which do you like best? If they are both different but equally good then no need to worry. If you really like DSP 354 a lot more then you better start putting some in the bunker.

I could tell them apart but found the difference to be minimal. Since it usually ends up in a cocktail where I could tell no difference the DSP 1 works fine for me.

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  • 1 month later...

I haven't had a chance to try a head to head, but after getting halfway through a bottle of the DSP 1 think I prefer 354. The new seems to be lacking the potpourri aromas I enjoyed in the old one.

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I admittedly haven't tried the DSP 1, as I keep buying the 354 when I see it. But the 354 still very much hits the right spot for me. I've got enough 354 bunkered to last quite a while.

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I did a SBS with these two ryes a while back and took notes. I also had two of my friends try them SBS, and I made the tasting blind for them. My notes are below.

DSP354:

Nose: earthy, cinnamon, peaches

Palate: roasted corn, oranges, noticeable heat but not overpowering, even neat

Finish: really nice. same flavors from palate slowly fade, eventually slightly tannic but delicious

DSP1:

Nose: matcha green tea, honey

Palate: really strong matcha, floral, brown sugar

Finish: floral, no tannins, long and clean

I thought that these were drastically different SBS. I get lots of fruity flavors from the DSP354, and just a lot of strong matcha and floral flavors from the DSP1. The 354 has more heat, but not in a bad way. Overall, I strongly prefer the 354 to the 1. Since I now have both bottles open on my bar and the bottles are identical, I've been challenging my initial impressions by randomly grabbing one, pouring a little, and then trying to guess which one it is by taste. It has been easy to do so. I really think that these are very different tasting whiskeys.

Interestingly, my two friends also thought that these were very different tasting, but both preferred the DSP1. Both are scotch drinkers rather than bourbon drinkers though, so it's possible that their preferences are much different than mine.

I encourage those who have access to both to do a side by side. It was pretty eye opening.

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Thx for the notes Kpiz! The DSP-KY-1 tastes mighty fine to me - it's more "rye" than the 354 and that's a positive in my book.

(And yes, I'm a scotch drinker)

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Nice notes Kpiz!! Couldn't agree more - very different whiskies. I'm in the same boat as ChainWhip - while I enjoyed the 354, is seems more like a bourye type mingle (which ain't a bad thing - love bourbon and rye!) I can see how long-time drinkers of Ritt BIB might not care for the change though; very little similarity to my palate.

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TunnelTiger

What was the reason to make the move from DSP-354 to DSP-1? I've tried searching but haven't come up with anything.

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Heaven Hill Fire that destroyed their distillery. DSP 354 made it for them, shadow distilled. DSP 1 is HH distillery and now makes it.

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Thanks guys. Interesting that you both like the DSP1. Maybe I'm holding on too tight to what I think Rittenhouse is supposed to taste like. If I was served DSP1 under a different label, I'd probably like it. The fact that its replacing my beloved 354, rather than joining it as a new offering, may be my real issue

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I tried the DSP 1 today, and it was completely different from what I was expecting. I was not doing a blind tasting, but I poured a sample of it, and a few bourbons to enjoy this afternoon. When I first tasted it, I assumed I grabbed the wrong glass. My first thought was "what the hell did I vat from heaven hill and beam?" The grassy flavor, which Kpiz more accurately described as matcha, just really threw me off.

I like it, I just don't think it tastes anything like the DSP 354.

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Ontario is always late to the game with new releases. The DSP-1 Ritt finally started rolling out here about a month ago.

I did a few side-by-sides, some blind, once from newly opened bottles, then later with some air time on them. I was a huge fan of DSP-354 Ritt, and I had been dreading the switch.

To me, the DSP-354 and the DSP-1 Rittenhouse Ryes are very different.

There were two things that I loved about the old version. First, it never felt like 100 proof when it hit the palate. I always found it very warming, well rounded and easy drinking. Secondly, and unique to this whiskey, there was a background flavour note that I adored. It was always difficult to describe, but anise-liquorice is the closest thing I can think of. If anyone has tasted those little SenSen breath fresheners, you'll know that distinctive taste. I've read others describing a medicine/cough syrup note, which might be this.

Unfortunately for me, both of those features have disappeared in the new version. You definitely taste the alcohol. It hits the tongue very spirit-y hot. And sadly, the anise is gone. In fact there is very little that's distinctive at all about the new rye. Rittenhouse has always been regarded around here as a top shelf flavour with a bottom shelf price. No longer, IMO.

I'm hoping that all is not lost. I remember that it took Heaven Hill a few years to get Elijah Craig back on track after moving the distillation to DSP-1. It's now almost back to its former self. With any luck Rittenhouse will continue to improve the same way.

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393foureyedfox

since I know im not the only one who will have to look it up..... matcha is finely ground green tea

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bad_scientist
I'm hoping that all is not lost. I remember that it took Heaven Hill a few years to get Elijah Craig back on track after moving the distillation to DSP-1. It's now almost back to its former self. With any luck Rittenhouse will continue to improve the same way.
A quick look through the thread tells me that not everyone thinks that it's "off track" now. I like both versions about the same, but for pretty different reasons, and plenty of people like the DSP-1 better.
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I had just picked up a DSP-1 recently before reading this thread. I like it fine, although it seems a bit more mellow than the pour I had at a bar a few months back.

Just a couple of days ago I ran across some DSP-354 and picked up one. Haven't tried it yet, but I'm definitely looking forward to doing a comparison.

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Here are the tasting notes of the DSP-1 that I put up on my Blog. I couldn't find DSP-354 to do a SBS, but based on memory, I slightly prefer the 354. Still great stuff that I will always keep on hand.

Nose: Solid rye backbone. Créme brulée, toasted oak, and caramel green apple.

Palate: Slightly thinner than I remember the DSP-354 being. It also has a lot more spice. 'Nilla Wafers, clove, salted caramel, green apple, Sichuan peppercorn, spearmint, and baking spices.

Finish: Long and warming. Some bitterness but not off-putting. More baking spices, cocoa, clove, and a whiff of fennel.

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A new label has been approved. It looks great. Sorry, I can't post the link

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Thanks Phil & Brian! It's not a thrilling label but it's definitely an upgrade. Didn't some old Ritt labels look similar to that?

Sent from my Galaxy Nexus using Tapatalk

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Thanks Phil & Brian! It's not a thrilling label but it's definitely an upgrade. Didn't some old Ritt labels look similar to that?

Sent from my Galaxy Nexus using Tapatalk

It is a lot like the label under Medley, Barton and early HH days.

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