Whiskey Review: Royal Ranthambore Whisky

, | October 6, 2022

Editor’s Note: This whisky was provided to us as a review sample by Radico Khaitan. 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.

I lived in India and had the privilege, on multiple occasions, to extensively travel the country. The northern state of Rajasthan is an incredible jewel in a beautiful, and diverse country. The Royal Ranthambore Heritage Collection Whisky produced by Radico Khaitan (India’s largest distillery) derives its name from the Ranthambore National Park located near the city of Sawai in Rajasthan. Ranthambore is most famous for its Bengal tiger population.

So, with my personal affinity for India, and more specifically the north of the country (where I lived), I was intrigued to review a whisky (I will adopt the brand’s preferred Scottish spelling) from the country I love.

Specifics about the actual liquor are limited to this statement, “The blended whisky is crafted with various bespoke blended malt Scotches from different geographical regions, made from 100% malted barley and blended with oak infused Indian Grain Neutral Spirit…”

Of course, the makeup of blended whisky is often opaque. By way of a recent example and detailed in my review of Crown Royal Aged 18 Years Extra Rare Canadian Blended Whisky, that premium product is also an undisclosed blend of what Crown called their “most exceptional whiskies.” So, there isn’t anything Royal Ranthambore is withholding that myriad other brands don’t do as well. I just prefer more detail.

Royal Ranthambore Whisky review

Royal Ranthambore Whisky (image via Devon Lyon/The Whiskey Wash)

Tasting Notes: Royal Ranthambore Whisky

Vital Stats: No age statement (NAS). 80 proof, 40% ABV. Mash bill: 100% malted barley sourced from “blended malt scotches from different geographical regions” blended with oak-infused neutral grain spirit from India. SRP $50.00.

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Appearance: The bottle is ribbed and includes a circular embossing on the back. The liquid’s color is amber and candied orange peel.

Nose: A pleasant blend of stone fruit, sweet citrus, and a subtle smokiness.

Palate: A mellow, smoke-forward sip that hints at something more, but never developed into any complexity. However, there was an enjoyable warmth for this 80 proof, which tailed off to a medium-short finish.

Whiskey Review: Royal Ranthambore Whisky
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Summary

Royal Ranthambore is a perfectly serviceable blended whisky. There just wasn’t any single trait that elevated it past middling for me. However, with an ever-increasing number of products from India being sold in Europe and the United States, it shouldn’t take a consumer too long to settle on an Indian whisky that suites their palate. India’s population is 1.4 billion people. Only China has a larger population (and just barely). India is also the world’s number one consumer of whisky, with an estimated 160 million people consuming alcohol. The Liquor Laboratory states, “Based on Bank of America Merrill Lynch research, India consumed nearly half of the whiskey in the world.”

With such an immense domestic market, and a world market with a seemingly insatiable appetite for all-things whisky, I anticipate more products from India. And I think that’s a good thing.

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Devon Lyon

Devon Lyon has spent the past two decades producing video content as well as writing copy and scripts for clients around the globe. But no matter how strong his natural wanderlust, it’s the Pacific Northwest he calls home. Whether it’s the growing local craft spirit scene, world-class wines, or a...