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


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I know I have at least 6 DSP-354's bunkered. It's a known quantity to me, and I am happy to have several left. At the very least, I'll be happy to have the DSP-354 together with the DSP-1 as a slightly different profile. But I'm sure I'll have no problem converting over to the DSP-1.

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The 354s all have the old label and say DSP KY 354 on that label.

The first DSP 1's that came out had a black label very similar to the old DSP 354's but had DSP 1 on the back. Not sure how many of those are still floating around. The new label DSP 1 is very different.

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354's disappeared pretty quickly around here and I've already gone through several of the 1's. Took me about 1/2 a 750 to recalibrate. :grin: Happy to report that all is well (as you can tell in the rye forums)...

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The first DSP 1's that came out had a black label very similar to the old DSP 354's but had DSP 1 on the back. Not sure how many of those are still floating around. The new label DSP 1 is very different.
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Harry in WashDC
What I meant to say is the new label on the DSP1 is very different. Some find a bit of difference from 354 to 1 (as do I if only a little bit) but I find them both to be good.
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Harry in WashDC

portwood's comment jogged my memory on another Ritt thingee. Prior to the label change, Ritt was not rare around here (Washington DC) but was not always findable without hitting several retail stores. Now, "everybody" seems to keep at least a couple of 750s on the shelf, and they tell me I'm not the only one buying it.

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I went out and bought a bottle of the new stuff and can say I still prefer the B-F Ritt. I wonder how the WR Rye will compare in this. Did B-F use a proprietary mashbill/yeast while they were making for HH?

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I went out and bought a bottle of the new stuff and can say I still prefer the B-F Ritt. I wonder how the WR Rye will compare in this. Did B-F use a proprietary mashbill/yeast while they were making for HH?
Woodford Rye is 53% rye compared to the 51% used for 354 Ritt and DSP 1 Ritt. And of course it is a blend of unknown percentages of Woodford and B-F whiskey much like the Woodford bourbons.

To me the old and new Ritt are better than the new Woodford rye and usually cost less to boot!.

Edited by tanstaafl2
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The new label is sort of retro back to an older label from the 80s or so.

here's a pick of three decades of Ritt

post-5814-144898222738_thumb.jpg

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here's a pick of three decades of Ritt

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Great pic Enoch! Thanks for sharing. I love seeing the older bottles.

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  • 5 months later...

I purchased this bottle of Rittenhouse Rye this past Saturday. If I'm understanding this correctly this bottle is pre-fire or is it just mislabeled?

post-12879-14489822890946_thumb.jpg

post-12879-14489822891489_thumb.jpg

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I believe (and hope the experts on the matter will chime in) that DSP 1 is the Bernheim distillery which HH owns. Pre-fire Ritt would say distilled by Heaven Hill Distilleroes DSP 31. This particular bottles looks to be distilled at Bernheim.

If it was Brown Forman Ritt, it would saw distilled DSP 354.

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What this says is the whisky was distilled at DSP1 and bottled at DSP31, both of which are owned by Heaven Hill. There's a good chance the whisky was made at DSP1 then shipped to DSP31 to be barreled, aged then bottled. The 1996 fire destroyed the still house at DSP31 but the bulk of the distillery remains, including the warehouses and bottling line. I suspect both distilleries are listed on the label in strict compliance with BIB guidelines.

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Rittenhouse switched from DSP 354 to DSP 1. The label stayed the same for a while, but the DSP numbers changed. After a year or so Heaven Hill redesigned the label. Around Indy you still may find old label DSP 354, or DSP 1 (like your photo), and new label DSP 1. Your bottle is probably 2 - 3 years old.

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Sluggo said he bought the bottle on Saturday and the picture was posted yesterday. Same labels perhaps?

Yes, I just bought the bottle from Big Red Liquors on Saturday October 17, 2015. I've seen the new label throughout central Indiana but I ran across a few of the older labels and after reading this entire thread and searching on google was confused as to where this particular bottle fit in on the timeline of production from the fire in 1996 to present day.

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Yes, I just bought the bottle from Big Red Liquors on Saturday October 17, 2015. I've seen the new label throughout central Indiana but I ran across a few of the older labels and after reading this entire thread and searching on google was confused as to where this particular bottle fit in on the timeline of production from the fire in 1996 to present day.
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I've been through several bottles of the new DSP-1 stuff now and I'm starting to put together a better idea of how it compares to the older DSP-354 stuff. Regardless of how strictly controlled the distillation process was at Brown-Forman, it still has a hint of Old Forester flavor to it. I can't describe it other than a butterscotchy-earthy flavor. Not bad really. The new stuff loses that flavor. At first I was sort of bummed, but interestingly, it seems to let the rye character show through a little better. I did a side-by-side of Wild Turkey 101 Rye and the DSP-1 Rittenhouse and they compare very favorably. I used to enjoy the WT quite a bit over the DSP-354 Rittenhouse. This tells me the newer Rittenhouse is more bold and rye-ish. Early batches of the DSP-1 rye seemed hit and miss. Some were fiery hot and thin, others tasted basically like bourbon. More recent bottles seem to be more consistent with better rye character. Hopefully this is a sign of things to come from Heaven Hill.

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I am a bit confused by this new DSP1 talk. Hopefully someone can lend some clarity. I'm trying to put together all the KBD DSP1 expressions for a side by side some time next year. It was my understanding DSP1 was distilled on 4/10/84 at Bernheim. I know that they sold to HH, but am curious as to the 'Distilled By HH' shown on the Ritt label up thread. Also, several posts indicate DSP1 Ritt has been popping up around the country.

Being in a controlled state (VA) we don't see stuff like this, but I see from the label posted, there is no age statement. Is this the same Rye batch distilled at Bernheim in '84? I've perused the archives and know a significant portion of this went to KBD, but what did Diego do with the rest of it, and where has it been since? Wasn't this getting long in the tooth when Willett started bottling this 10 years ago?

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