Whiskey Review: Oak and Eden Rye and Rumba

, | October 16, 2021

Editor’s Note: This whiskey was provided to us as a review sample by Oak and Eden. This in no way, per our editorial policies, influenced the final outcome of this review. It should also be noted that by clicking the buy link towards the bottom of this review our site receives a small referral payment which helps to support, but not influence, our editorial and other costs.

Wood makes the whiskey. At least that’s what Oak and Eden says. Let’s follow their logic. A spirit can be made in a matter of days, but whiskey takes years to make with its maturation in wood. “With hundreds of botanicals and countless flavor and texture characteristics inside any given species of wood, it is responsible for most of the flavor and all of the color in any whiskey.”

All of the barrels that mature a whiskey have been charred to some degree. Between the wood, char, weather, and aging, all of it can affect the flavor of the whiskey. “Over the course of several years, the barrel is subject to the various seasons and polarizing weather changes, forcing it to expand and contract, effectively breathing the whiskey in and out of the wood, where, over time, it adopts the color, flavors, botanicals, oils, and sugars from the wood.”

The Oak and Eden process is a bit different than most. Instead of fully aging their product in wood barrels or moving the whiskey from one barrel to a finishing barrel, like red wine or rum, they use wood spires to add the flavor. It’s not the traditional way to “flavor” whiskey, but Oak and Eden are known for their patented technique of using spires for “in-bottle finishing.”

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For this review, we’re looking at Oak and Eden Rye and Rumba, which starts with a ninety-five percent rye that’s aged for two years in new charred American Oak barrels. Then to finish, they bottle it with their five-inch spiral-cut piece of American Oak that has been soaked in Caribbean rum for six weeks.

Oak and Eden also offer many other “flavored” whiskeys with their spires such as coffee, cabernet, toasted oak, charred oak, torched oak, and ale.

Oak and Eden Rye and Rumba (image via Melissa Jones)

Oak and Eden Rye and Rumba (image via Melissa Jones)

Tasting Notes: Oak and Eden Rye and Rumba

Vital Stats: 95% Straight Rye whiskey, aged for two years in new, charred American Oak barrels. A Caribbean rum-soaked spire of wood is added to the bottle to finish the rye whiskey. 90 proof. $60.

Appearance: Tawny in color. Beautiful curved bottle shape.

Nose: There’s a lot of character in the nose. I detect a lot of tropical notes like pineapple and pastry shop treats like sweet sticky buns. It has a lot of fresh baked goods and a little pine.

Palate: Oak and Eden got a great flavor with this rye and rum combo. It is definitely rum forward. I also taste brown sugar, molasses, tropical fruit, and spicy overripe fruit. The finish is bitter on the back, but sweet on the front.

The Takeaway


The nose is like a pastry shop with a side of pine and pineapple. It is unique on the nose and palate. It has a lot of character. If you are looking for a rum- and fruit-forward whiskey, look no further. Oak and Eden have bottled something that reminds me of a vacation to the Caribbean. I might prefer the vacation, but I’ll take this too.

User Review
4 (4 votes)

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Melissa Jones

Melissa D. Jones is a traveler, blogger, photographer, storyteller, foodie, whiskey lover and creative entrepreneur. Living for adventure and new experiences she's photographed her way around all 50 states and 47 countries (still counting!) and wrote her travel knowledge into a book. When she's not traveling you can find her...