Review: Restitution Rye Whiskey

DSR – SC – 010: Restitution Rye Whiskey

Company/Distillery: Twelve 33 Distillery

Location: Little River, South Carolina

Mash Bill: Rye, Corn, and Malt

Age Statement: No Age Statement

Proof/ABV: 90 Proof/45% ABV

Color & Viscosity: Twelve 33 Restitution Rye presents tawny in color from the bottle. Poured into the tasting vessel, this whiskey is chestnut in color. The viscous line is initially thin, then melds into a thick lip. Large droplets form and transition to sluggish legs that drip down the sides of the Glencairn glass.  

Purchase Price: $37.49 from Twelve 33 Distillery – Myrtle Beach, SC

Bottle Label Information:

Front Label

“Twelve 33 Distillery”

“Restitution Rye Whiskey”

Rear Label

“Restitution Rye Whiskey”

“Our Restitution Rye Whiskey is payback after prohibition nearly killed this incomparable spirit. While other whiskeys recovered quickly after repeal rye has paid its dues for far too long. Restitution Rye Whiskey is produced using a blend of three grains: Rye, Corn and Malt. While still maintaining the traditional spice profile of a Rye Whiskey, the addition of Corn and Malt, then aging in new American Oak Barrels makes Restitution soft, smooth and easy to drink. Please enjoy responsibly.” | (843) 663-3344″

“Bottled by Twelve 33 Distillery, Little River, South Carolina”

Neck Label

“Amendment XXI Of The United States Constitution”

“The Eighteenth Article of Amendment to the Constitution of the United States is Hereby Repealed.”

“Ratified December 1933”

Distillery Background

Twelve 33 Distillery

Twelve 33 Distillery is conveniently located just north of Myrtle Beach, South Carolina in the town of Little River. The distillery was founded in 2018 by husband and wife duo Kevin and Rebecca Osborn. Mr. and Mrs. Osborn met while attending college at Michigan State University and, unbeknownst to them, would eventually live in seven different states over the course of their careers. While in college, Mr. Osborn developed a passion for brewing beer at home. Eventually his career would lead him to California where he would be presented with the opportunity to become a winemaker. After 6 years, Mr. Osborn would find out that his company was being sold and his time as a Corporate Executive was drawing to a close–a new plan needed to be put in place.

It was at this time that Mr. and Mrs. Osborn would begin exploring the possibility of opening a distillery. The idea wasn’t totally foreign to them, as they had a couple of friends in Michigan that were able to successfully open a craft distillery about 5 years earlier. Mr. Osborn would use the knowledge gleaned from his friends in Michigan, along with various workshops and distillation certification courses, to ultimately take the plunge and establish Twelve 33 Distilling.

Little River, South Carolina provided a fertile environment for building their distillery as well as growing a following for a craft distillery. Little River is located just north of one of the busiest year-round travel destinations in the Mid-Atlantic in Myrtle Beach. In fact, Myrtle Beach welcomes approximately 14 million visitors per year. Having a location just off of Highway 17 allows summer beach-goers and winter golfers alike, to easily experience South Carolina Craft Spirits and grow the brand as happy customers take their purchases back to their home states.

Current product offerings at Twelve 33 Distillery include Intemperance Vodka, Jo-Jo Gin, 3 Peppers Vodka, Big Six Straight Bourbon Whiskey, Restitution Rye Whiskey, Mullet Creek Silver Rum, Crusader Spiced Rum, Carolina Peach Vodka, Sweet Tea Vodka, and Arethusa Single Barrel Rum.

Visiting Myrtle Beach or need additional information about the distillery? Check out their website!

Restitution Rye Whiskey

The bottle of Restitution Rye Whiskey we tasted for this review was contract distilled by another facility and bottled by Twelve 33. No information regarding the source or the state of distillation was available at the time of this review. The mash bill used includes rye, corn and malt. Little additional information about this offering is readily available.

Tasting Notes

Tasting Date/Vessel: February 1, 2021 – Neat in Glencairn Glass then with a splash of distilled water.


Christian: In the bottle, Restitution Rye Whiskey offers a pleasant opening salvo of brown sugar, pipe tobacco, and a subtle punch of rye grain. In my Glencairn glass the rye whiskey is much more floral or perfume forward than I anticipated. Rye grain leads the way in the form of baking spices but is quickly followed by a corn sweetness. A quick swirl allows a hint of caramel, brown sugar, and honey to join in. The addition of distilled water really makes this rye sweet and aromatic. Rose water and brown sugar are so strong.

Mike: As I nose this rye from the bottle, wonderful aromas of sweet curing tobacco and newly fallen autumn leaves permeate the nostrils. Nosing this whiskey from the glass, it’s as if someone sliced a bushel full of fresh honey-crisp apples. As I swirl the rye in the glass, mild notes of rubbing alcohol are released then swiftly transition to cinnamon flavored applesauce.


Christian: Restitution Rye has a nice silky mouthfeel that leaves a thin coating on the tongue and roof of my mouth. The flavors here begin softly and slowly build. Raw rye grain starts off the experience (yes, I have actually tasted raw rye grain before). In addition to the rye are notes of honey, clove, and just a smidgen of fresh cut apple. For some reason, I am getting a little bit of new make flavor in this. I didn’t notice it during the first taste test, but it seems to be present in my tasting today. The water causes the mouth to take on buttery flavor profile that comes along with the cereal grains and pastry. Not nearly as sweet as I expected.

Mike: My first sip of this Restitution Rye lets you know you’re drinking a rye. Rye spice is dominant upfront and hits my tongue mid-palate. This whiskey has a medium bodied mouthfeel and despite the spiciness, transitions to a rather sweet profile on the second passing. Honey-crisp apples and honeysuckle flowers transition to flavors of mild leather. This rye presents with just a touch of young whiskey heat but is more refined–there is definitely no harshness to this offering.


Christian: The finish on this rye is medium with a punch of rye and baking spices immediately. This transitions into a moderate warmth as it moves to my chest. Apples, in the form of unsweetened applesauce with cinnamon, really shows up now. This is accompanied by a generous portion of bitterness from the barrel char. Long after the spirit is gone, apple takes over on the palate. The finish becomes quite tame with the added water. I notice a lot less oak bitterness influence and more ground cinnamon and unsweetened applesauce.

Mike: This rye whiskey offers a medium to soft finish overall. Light charred oak flavors settle in on the back of the palate as a very soft cinder lingers in the back of the throat.  

Our Rating

Final Thoughts

Christian: Of the rye whiskey we have reviewed, I would put Twelve 33’s Restitution Rye near the top. This rye whiskey offers a tinge of rye characteristics without overpowering the drinker with loads of baking spice and rye grain punch that is traditional found in this classification. We did try this rye in our Rickhouse Ramblings Old Fashioned Recipe and it held up nicely while adding a good amount of flavor. Of the two offerings I have reviewed from Twelve 33 Distillery, Big Six Straight Bourbon Whiskey and now Restitution Rye, the rye whiskey offers a considerable amount of flavor and character when trying the two side by side. If you are in the Myrtle Beach area, I urge you to stop by and give this distillery a try.

Rating: 2.75 Rickhouses

Mike: There are lots of good things to say about this rye and not much, if any, bad. I find this as a very sippable and smooth whiskey from Twelve 33. It is a balanced and straightforward offering, providing just enough heat and rye spice with the traditional crisp apple flavors. This isn’t going to knock your socks off and make you say “WOW” but it is a respectable sipper neat and robust enough as a mixer.  

With all that said, this is an undisclosed sourced product. While very good, my only concerns are whether or not Twelve 33 can maintain a consistent profile for this product via their source and when it is distilled and aged in house.  

Rating: 3.25 Rickhouses


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