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    New bourbon thread

    Okay, we had one before, and now that there's a new post about it, let's discuss it again.


    In late September 2001, a handful of Green Berets (and some CIA fellas) were dropped off in Northern Afghanistan to start taking the fight to the Taliban. They got around on horseback regularly, becoming known as the Horse Soldiers. Some of them make some absolutely magnificent bourbon now.


    20200207_124414 by Professor Horseyhead, on Flickr


    When in Texas last month for my reenlistment, we dropped by Apis in Spicewood for a little celebratory dinner (birthday was that same weekend). I had a fairly stressful work-related phone call (a guy in my unit was catching a hard time regarding his Government Travel Card and I was trying to help him get it fixed) just before heading in, wife ordered a drink for me, and then I saw this sitting on the shelf. One pour (the first one, as you can see by the level in the bottle) was almost as much as a bottle of Blanton's is priced at retail. And it was worth. every. penny.


    2020-01-18_07-02-49 by Professor Horseyhead, on Flickr


    Speaking of Blanton's this bottle is almost half gone. And that makes me sad. I've no idea where or if I'll find another bottle (bonus points if you can name the boots).


    20190523_162342 by Professor Horseyhead, on Flickr


    In addition to the Blanton's and Horse Soldier, the shelf also currently holds Maker's, Yellowstone, Woodford Double Oaked, 1792, 1876, Six and Twenty, and of course a couple bottles of Buffalo Trace.
    https://www.professorhorseyhead.com

    #2
    That's a really nice collection. I'd love to try the Horse Soldier. I've tried ordering or procuring a bottle of pappy's on a few occasions but it always falls through. Glad to hear it was worth the price. It's so expensive, sometimes I wonder if its just hype.

    Comment


      #3
      Originally posted by bassoonguy View Post
      That's a really nice collection. I'd love to try the Horse Soldier. I've tried ordering or procuring a bottle of pappy's on a few occasions but it always falls through. Glad to hear it was worth the price. It's so expensive, sometimes I wonder if its just hype.
      Oh it's not hype at all. I wouldn't pay what the scalpers online try to get for a bottle after distribution of that year's bottles happens, but the retail of $199 is absolutely worth it...and I'd probably pay 2-3x that to get a bottle for special occasions.

      It's hands down the most delicious, complex, smooth, and flavorful bourbon I've ever had. I would jump at the chance to buy a bottle as long as they're not asking much more than about 500 for a bottle.

      But yeah I'm an idiot so I'd probably drop half a grand on a bottle. And then hide it from myself so I forget I have it.
      https://www.professorhorseyhead.com

      Comment


        #4
        Nice to see an informed bourbon post. Most these days are poorly researched and full of head shaker picks. Raised an eyebrow at the RC 6, as it's so new and benefiting from some FOMO hype. Would have leaned toward ECBP, Booker's, 4R Select or maybe even OWA if it had to be a wheater.

        For the affordable pours, wouldn't argue with most. Early Times BiB also deserves a spot on every shelf these days.

        Comment


          #5
          Don't forget Old Grandad! Bonded, so it's not aged very long, but surprisingly mellow with a kick of flavor. And $20 a bottle! And James bond drank it whenever he was in the US. What more could you ask for?

          Comment


            #6
            If we're following the post's guidelines of just talking about our favorite everyday bourbon... mine has been and still continues to be Eagle Rare.

            It's a solid 10 year bourbon that is reasonably priced, and although they can't claim that it's "single barrel" anymore due to switching to an automated bottling line it's still basically single barrel.

            Hard to do better for $30-35.

            Comment


              #7
              I support the inclusion of Wild Turkey products in the article. I am a huge fan of a lot of the Buffalo Trace products (ER, anything EHT, OWA, W12, Stagg Jr, Hancock's, BTAC, etc), but the hype, gouging, and unavailability is just insane. Wild Turkey has several excellent offerings that are available just about anywhere, anytime. For my tastes, Rare Breed is one of the most underrated bourbons around.

              BTW, am I the only one that is over drinking out of a dainty glencairn glass or a spittoon i.e. neat glass? Just pour me two fingers in a rocks glass, please.
              Last edited by ScottD; February 13, 2020, 12:10 PM.

              Comment


                #8
                I liked the main site post. I had a couple builds, but no major issues with the recos:

                - Maker's Cask Strength over RC6 if you insist on staying away from OWA due to Buffalo Trace allocation issues
                - EHT is so tough to find that it wouldn't be my BIB recognition, even though it's really good. I'd go for something that can always be found on shelf.

                Bourbon is an incredibly frustrating hobby in my area (Cincinnati), but I really enjoy it when I can find the good stuff. Currently on the hunt for a Stagg Jr. I really want GTS, but didn't win a bottle in this year's lottery and can't rationally spend $400 secondary market on a bottle to drink... hah

                Comment


                  #9
                  Originally posted by andrewrg View Post
                  Don't forget Old Grandad! Bonded, so it's not aged very long, but surprisingly mellow with a kick of flavor. And $20 a bottle! And James bond drank it whenever he was in the US. What more could you ask for?
                  OGD is available in a few different proofs, but the OGD 100 and 114 are the best IMO. Age is supposedly 4-6 years, but I wouldn't be surprised if some older stuff filters down.

                  Originally posted by ScottD View Post
                  I support the inclusion of Wild Turkey products in the article. I am a huge fan of lot the Buffalo Trace products (ER, anything EHT, OWA, W12, Stagg Jr, Hancock's, BTAC, etc), but the hype, gouging, and unavailability is just insane. Wild Turkey has several excellent offerings that are available just about anywhere, anytime. For my tastes, Rare Breed is one the most underrated bourbons around.

                  BTW, am I the only one that is over drinking out of a dainty glencairn glass or a spittoon i.e. neat glass? Just pour me two fingers in a rocks glass, please.
                  I still prefer the Glencairn. I usually grab one or two at each distillery I visit. A rocks glass doesn't capture or funnel the nose/scent for me, and a lot of what you taste is tied to what you smell.

                  Originally posted by wsupjs View Post
                  I liked the main site post. I had a couple builds, but no major issues with the recos:

                  - Maker's Cask Strength over RC6 if you insist on staying away from OWA due to Buffalo Trace allocation issues
                  - EHT is so tough to find that it wouldn't be my BIB recognition, even though it's really good. I'd go for something that can always be found on shelf.

                  Bourbon is an incredibly frustrating hobby in my area (Cincinnati), but I really enjoy it when I can find the good stuff. Currently on the hunt for a Stagg Jr. I really want GTS, but didn't win a bottle in this year's lottery and can't rationally spend $400 secondary market on a bottle to drink... hah
                  Yeah, EHT is rarely seen on shelves here in Nashville these days. If you're in the market for a similar value, New Riff is where it's at. Also, they're just across the river from you in Cincinnati!

                  If you like Stagg Jr. and GTS, try a bottle of Jack Daniels Barrel Proof. It's nothing like its black label brother - the gold label single barrel barrel proof option brings the heat and flavor to rival GTS (and has won a few blind taste tests).

                  Comment


                    #10
                    Also, don't poo-poo on sourced bourbons just because they're sourced. Back in the day, everyone sourced bourbons from a small handful of distilleries, including the infamous Van Winkles. That's like saying your Brooks Brothers suit sucks because it uses Loro Piana wool!

                    Some of the subjectively best and most talked about bourbons available are currently sourced, including: Angel's Envy, Blaum Brothers, Belle Meade, Backbone/Bone Snapper (some barrels), Barrell (some barrels), Bulleit, High West, Joseph Magnus, Pinhook, Rebel Yell, Smooth Ambler, Whistle Pig, and Willett!

                    Comment


                      #11
                      Good list of solid value bourbons I thought, and sounds like i need to keep an eye out for Horse Solider.

                      Buffalo Trace and Eagle Rare are generally my everyday go-to's (I agree with everything you said about ER [MENTION=18067]abh159[/MENTION]), but Wild Turkey 101 is great stuff for the $20-$25 price range. I'm not all that into rye but their 101 Rye is really good too. I do need to try more of the Wild Turkey line-up in general (I usually end up gravitating toward the BT line-up), last night I picked up some WT Kentucky Spirit that I'm looking forward to opening. I was also able to grab a bottle of Taylor Small Batch, which I used to see everywhere but is definitely becoming harder to find around here.

                      On the wheater side, I've tried and enjoyed the RC6 a lot, but I'm not sure if I enjoyed it $60's worth. I tried Larceny for the first time recently and liked it, seems like it could be a decent substitute if/when my Weller Special Reserve ever runs out.

                      In the "next level" range, I'll put in a plug for Old Forester 1920, I usually see it for $60 and it's fantastic.

                      In the "good friends or special occasions only" category, I've been lucky enough to find OWA, Weller 12-yr, Blantons, and Elmer T. Lee over the last year or so, after a long dry spell, but yeah, nursing those for all they're worth, especially the ETL.

                      I've only had Van Winkle once, was able to try the full line-up at a tasting 3 or 4 years ago. To be honest while I liked them all, the 20 was the only one that I thought would be worth the $ - but maaaaannnnnn it's good.

                      Have any of you guys seen "Neat: The Story of Bourbon?" Highly recommended if not.
                      “There are moments, Jeeves, when one asks oneself, 'Do trousers matter?'"
                      "The mood will pass, sir.”

                      Comment


                        #12
                        Originally posted by mcadamsandwich View Post
                        Yeah, EHT is rarely seen on shelves here in Nashville these days. If you're in the market for a similar value, New Riff is where it's at. Also, they're just across the river from you in Cincinnati!
                        I forgot about New Riff above but I'll second the recommendation, very good stuff.
                        “There are moments, Jeeves, when one asks oneself, 'Do trousers matter?'"
                        "The mood will pass, sir.”

                        Comment


                          #13
                          I really need to grab a couple more bottles of Elijah at the class six. That's my "daily go-to" alongside Buffalo Trace. Both are easily under 20 a bottle, and both are currently very well stocked on the shelves at my local....
                          https://www.professorhorseyhead.com

                          Comment


                            #14
                            Originally posted by ScottD View Post
                            I support the inclusion of Wild Turkey products in the article. I am a huge fan of a lot of the Buffalo Trace products (ER, anything EHT, OWA, W12, Stagg Jr, Hancock's, BTAC, etc), but the hype, gouging, and unavailability is just insane. Wild Turkey has several excellent offerings that are available just about anywhere, anytime. For my tastes, Rare Breed is one of the most underrated bourbons around.

                            BTW, am I the only one that is over drinking out of a dainty glencairn glass or a spittoon i.e. neat glass? Just pour me two fingers in a rocks glass, please.
                            Yeah, I have a bottle of Four Roses (the standard issue not some special small batch or super aged version) and a bottle of that Russel Reserve on my shelf right now, but have been a Wild Turkey 101 fan since I was in college in the late-1980s/early '90s. Back then it was not thought of as the best but most people were drinking Jim Beam (not as good) or Gentleman Jack if they felt like splurging. Old Crow was popular I think because it was cheap.

                            I like the spiciness of Wild Turkey and so does my wife. Really do think it's one of the best buys in bourbon. That 10 year Russel Reserve is a mellowed out version which is nice and although it's a step up from 101 in price is still eminently affordable. Four Roses is not bad either but I like Wild Turkey better.

                            It's getting hard to find Buffalo Trace around the DC area. I like it but I like Turkey offerings just as much...actually there are a lot of bourbon brands that are perfectly fine but don't get the hype the Buffalo Trace line does...what a marketing coup for them. Not sure how they pulled it off but it's impressive.
                            “Clothes make the man. Naked people have little or no influence on society.” – Mark Twain

                            Comment


                              #15
                              I can vouch that Elijiah Craig small batch is still very good for the price, probably the last hold out on affordable aged bourbon. Bernheim Original is still on of my favorite wheated whiskeys. Blantons does seem to be coming down in price, at least around here, which is a very good thing. I used to buy it for less than $40!

                              I find it difficult to bring myself to try new bourbons. A lot of the new stuff is a premium price for average whiskey or stuff they didn't even produce.

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