KW= Kentucky Wild
KW: New Riff, Newport, Kentucky, USA (The Party Source)
269: Round Barn, Baroda, Michigan, USA
KW: Dry gin from rye spirit.
269: Dry gin from grape spirit.
KW: $16/375 ml ($30/750 ml)
269: $20/375 ml
Appearance: Clear (both).
KW: Varnish, roasted grain, then burn.
269: Plum eau de vie, varnish, alcohol.
KW: Identical to the nose.
269: Fruity gum, light burn, orange peel.
KW: Nail polish fumes, then burn.
269: Orange soda, then fades quickly.
KW: Pretty good in all applications I tried: with tonic, dry Martini, Negroni, Princeton.
269: Pretty bad in all applications I tried except for the Negroni and Princeton in which it virtually disappeared. Fruity aroma clashed with the bitterness of the tonic and dry vermouth.
Parting words: New Riff is the distillery founded by The Party Source wine, beer, spirits, part supplies, etc superstore in the Cincinnati area. The distillery is a modern building located adjacent to the TPS parking lot. They make Kentucky Wild, a barrel aged version of it, a rye and a bourbon, as well as bottling an MGPI sourced bourbon called OKI (Ohio, Kentucky, Indiana).
I wrote about Round Barn’s distilling program here. 269 uses the same base as their successful DiVine grape vodka. This gin tasted fine at the distillery, but when I had the chance to spend more time with it at home, I liked it less and less. It is little more than a lightly infused version of their vodka. The distillate is firmly in the drivers seat with the only other passenger being an orange peel.
I didn’t care much for either of these, frankly. KW was virtually undrinkable neat but was adequate in cocktails. 269 was better neat, but was a cocktail killer at a wimpy proof and high price. Kentucky Wild is mildly recommended for cocktails and 269 is not recommended for anything.