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View Full Version : What does Bottled in Bond mean?



wildcatdon
10-13-2008, 08:13
Started thinking about it the other day,and I really dont know the answer..I know someone can enlighten me..thanks..

mozilla
10-13-2008, 08:35
There are tons of posts and threads with info on Bib regs...but the just of it is...

A product of one distillery and season aged to a minimum of 4 yrs and 100 proof. It can have more age without issue. It is a mark of quality from the old days. That's the bones of it.

spun_cookie
10-13-2008, 08:51
The juice is also from the same distiller and the same season (2 seasons a year).

shoshani
10-13-2008, 11:40
And at one time it was the standard by which all distillery bottlings were judged.

A given distillery 50 years ago might have marketed an extra-aged higher-end expression (think Very Old Fitz), or they might have come out with "lighter, milder" 86 or 80 proof. Or both. But even while they did that, the mainstream whiskey the distillery sold was likely as not Bottled in Bond. That was the bread-and-butter expression of a given distillery's whiskey.

I've seen ads from decades ago for a BiB expression of Jim Beam. All of the "Olds" we know today (Crow, Fitzgerald, Forester, Grand-Dad, Overholt, Taylor) were Bonded back then, even if a lower-proof expression was also being sold (which was the case with all the Olds except perhaps for Overholt).

What I don't know, and what I would very much like to know, was whether bourbon and rye were REQUIRED to be bottled in bond, or whether the government set up a stipulation and if you wanted to sell your whiskey that's what you adhered to. Because during and right after WW II (thanks to Prohibition and the Wartime switch to industrial alcohol) there were whiskey brands sold that were blends of, say, a small percentage of five year old bourbon and a larger percentage of 18 month old whiskey - obviously such a product would not qualify under the Bottled In Bond Act, but just as obviously it was not against the law to sell such a product.

wildcatdon
10-13-2008, 11:40
Thanks for the info..

cowdery
10-13-2008, 22:24
Bottled-in-bond was never required but it did have a "Good Housekeeping Seal" effect. Nobody would attempt to sell anything except a commodity brand that wasn't BIB, and at that time everything was 100 proof too. But a lot of non-BIB whiskey was sold, because a lot of people couldn't afford the good stuff, but BIB was considered the good stuff.

It was only after Prohibition, and only really after WWII, that the lower proofs started to appear. Consumers during Prohibition had developed a taste for lighter spirits. That's when the long, sad decline of American whiskey began, even though sales themselves boomed until the late 1960s.

Luna56
10-13-2008, 22:48
Chuck, what do you mean exactly by "the long, sad decline of American whiskey?" In what ways has it declined, and from what standard? Is it on its way back up?

Cheers!

cowdery
10-14-2008, 02:16
Before Prohibition, if you drank a distilled spirit, you drank American whiskey. American whiskey dominated the American distilled spirits market.

During Prohibition, most of the distilled spirits consumed were not, suffice it to say, Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey. Even the swells who could afford the good stuff were drinking scotch and Canadian, much lighter drinks, but people were drinking a lot of white goods, i.e., gin, vodka and rum.

After Prohibition, the American distilleries went back to making a heavy, full-flavored straight whiskey, and people didn't like it, so they started to lighten the product--higher distillation proof, higher entry proof, lower bottling proof, less rye, lighter char, blended whiskey, light whiskey. They tried all of that, then began a race to the bottom on price, trying to take share in a contracting market, and that led to a race to the bottom on quality. Only after all that did we start to see the double-digit annual sales declines, until it reached bottom at about half of what it had once been. It stayed flat for a long time, then slowly started to rebuild. Quality has also come back, though the style is still "modern." It was crappy-modern and now it's excellent-modern, but it's not the way it used to be.

Stu
10-14-2008, 09:51
Chuck,

As always, you are a wealth of information. I'm glad to know we are on our way up with "excellent modern"! Do you think the whiskey we'll be drinking in 10 or 15 years (assuming you and I are still able to drink) will be better than what we drink today?

Stu

barturtle
10-14-2008, 09:57
Chuck,

As always, you are a wealth of information. I'm glad to know we are on our way up with "excellent modern"! Do you think the whiskey we'll be drinking in 10 or 15 years (assuming you and I are still able to drink) will be better than what we drink today?

Stu

I know I will, I'm stocking up now on the "good stuff" while I'm drinking bottom shelfers:slappin:

Luna56
10-14-2008, 10:58
Thanks, Chuck, great info.

Cheers!

Vange
10-14-2008, 11:54
IF SW is the barometer for good bourbon in 10 years (if not much sooner) there will be none left.

cowdery
10-14-2008, 13:23
I think we are drinking very good whiskey now and will continue to receive the quality of whiskey we demand, as evidenced by our willingness to buy it. Virtually all of the American whiskey produced today by the major distilleries is of excellent quality so the only issue is style, which is a matter of individual tastes. The best way to ensure that we will have good whiskey to enjoy in the future is for us to buy and consume as much good whiskey as we can now. I feel I'm doing my part.

OscarV
10-14-2008, 13:59
I know I will, I'm stocking up now on the "good stuff" while I'm drinking bottom shelfers:slappin:

I do a lot of this also.
And some criticize us for it saying "Bourbon is meant to be drank not collected."
True, but if I only bought what I was immediatlely going to consume then the good stuff would not be available when I am ready for it.
Here is an example, I have 5 bottles of Four Roses Jim Rutledge 40th Anniversary, if I did not own any and when I get ready to drink one I would be out of luck trying to get a bottle at my a store.

barturtle
10-14-2008, 14:15
I do a lot of this also.
And some criticize us for it saying "Bourbon is meant to be drank not collected."


They can criticize me all they want, but sometime in the distant future, when Lburg Lot "b" and Weller 19 and Hirsch 20 are but a distant memory to some and nothing more than rumor to others, I'll be breaking out bottles to share.:grin: I bet I won't get much criticizing then!

OscarV
10-14-2008, 14:16
They can criticize me all they want, but sometime in the distant future, when Lburg Lot "b" and Weller 19 and Hirsch 20 are but a distant memory to some and nothing more than rumor to others, I'll be breaking out bottles to share.:grin:

Ah yes, after all, what are future friends for?:grin:

spun_cookie
10-14-2008, 14:26
This falls under the area of "strategic drink planning for future consumption".

I would find it hard to believe anyone here would complain about this.

Collecting for the sake of profiteering is what I think folks get upset with...

OscarV
10-14-2008, 14:29
This falls under the area of "strategic drink planning for future consumption".
quote][QUOTE]



I have always wondered what SDPFFC stood for.:cool:

boone
10-14-2008, 16:19
[QUOTE=OscarV;143366]
And some criticize us for it saying "Bourbon is meant to be drank not collected.".[/QUOTE

-----------------

I am a collector! I have a few hundred in my collection. Mostly rare stuff..all nearly family related items and gifts.

I will not drink them nor sell them. They will be passed to my children...Patrick has the historical interest but there are a couple that will go to Therese and Erica.

They will not be opened in my lifetime.

Bettye Jo

spun_cookie
10-14-2008, 19:27
I am a collector! ...

I will not drink them nor sell them. They will be passed to my children...

Bettye Jo

That is really nice... Quite the legacy

barturtle
10-15-2008, 08:02
Quality has also come back, though the style is still "modern." It was crappy-modern and now it's excellent-modern, but it's not the way it used to be.

Interestingly, I just ran across someone else using the term "modern whiskey" today, here (http://www.maltmaniacs.org/malt-110.html#0820)...yeah it's scotch, but I think many of the same points are encompassed, in their own way, as applicable to that spirit.

cowdery
10-15-2008, 08:16
The modern style of blended scotch has a very low malt to grain ratio, much lower than in the past.

bluesbassdad
10-15-2008, 13:16
Interestingly, I just ran across someone else using the term "modern whiskey" today, here (http://www.maltmaniacs.org/malt-110.html#0820)...yeah it's scotch, but I think many of the same points are encompassed, in their own way, as applicable to that spirit.

Timothy,

Never mind the article. Do you realize the ramifications of the photo to the right-hand side of it?

The barrel doesn't have to be metal; it could be charred, white oak. It doesn't have to be empty; it could be filled with Heaven Hill white dog.

Picture a combination rick house and exercise club. People pay for the privilege of continually spinning the barrels, presumably accelerating the aging process.

At the very least the practice would open up another opportunity for competition.

Yours truly,
Dave Morefield

barturtle
10-15-2008, 13:30
Timothy,

Never mind the article. Do you realize the ramifications of the photo to the right-hand side of it?

The barrel doesn't have to be metal; it could be charred, white oak. It doesn't have to be empty; it could be filled with Heaven Hill white dog.

Picture a combination rick house and exercise club. People pay for the privilege of continually spinning the barrels, presumably accelerating the aging process.

At the very least the practice would open up another opportunity for competition.

Yours truly,
Dave Morefield

I believe there was a practice in Madeira of the winemakers putting a cask out on a rocking horse, and when guests came calling you were expected to give it a push...this was to duplicate the rocking motion of the sea voyage that the casks traditionally undertook...

B1bomber
10-15-2008, 14:10
There's a great book I picked up from LeNell's in Brooklyn over the weekend called, "Bourbon, Straight: The Uncut and Unfiltered Story of American Whiskey." It's written by Charles K. Cowdery. It's about as thorough as any source I've ever come across and covers just about every subject about bourbon and it's history, including the meaning of BIB. I know that book is available on Amazon if anyone else is interested in it. Highly recommended as it's informative and easy to digest.

Lost Pollito
10-15-2008, 14:20
I believe Kelt (cognac) has a high end cognac that actually still takes an ocean voyage in barrels , and then is bottled.

mozilla
10-15-2008, 14:33
There's a great book I picked up from LeNell's in Brooklyn over the weekend called, "Bourbon, Straight: The Uncut and Unfiltered Story of American Whiskey." It's written by Charles K. Cowdery. It's about as thorough as any source I've ever come across and covers just about every subject about bourbon and it's history, including the meaning of BIB. I know that book is available on Amazon if anyone else is interested in it. Highly recommended as it's informative and easy to digest.


Never heard of that guy, before. :skep:

bluesbassdad
10-15-2008, 15:47
There's a great book I picked up from LeNell's in Brooklyn over the weekend called, "Bourbon, Straight: The Uncut and Unfiltered Story of American Whiskey." It's written by Charles K. Cowdery. It's about as thorough as any source I've ever come across and covers just about every subject about bourbon and it's history, including the meaning of BIB. I know that book is available on Amazon if anyone else is interested in it. Highly recommended as it's informative and easy to digest.

On the off chance you're not putting us on, I suggest you go to the Search function, select Advanced Search, and then search for all posts by someone with username "Cowdery". :grin:

Then you may find something here (http://cowdery.home.netcom.com/page2.html)that interests you -- a DVD about the bourbon business, for example. (I have it, albeit in an older format. Each time I view it I feel as though I'm taking a tour of bourbon country.)

Yours truly,
Dave Morefield

spun_cookie
10-15-2008, 18:52
Originally Posted by B1bomber http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/red2black/buttons/viewpost.gif (http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/showthread.php?p=143469#post143469)
There's a great book I picked up from LeNell's in Brooklyn over the weekend called, "Bourbon, Straight: The Uncut and Unfiltered Story of American Whiskey." It's written by Charles K. Cowdery. It's about as thorough as any source I've ever come across and covers just about every subject about bourbon and it's history, including the meaning of BIB. I know that book is available on Amazon if anyone else is interested in it. Highly recommended as it's informative and easy to digest.




On the off chance you're not putting us on, I suggest you go to the Search function, select Advanced Search, and then search for all posts by someone with username "Cowdery". :grin:

Then you may find something here (http://cowdery.home.netcom.com/page2.html)that interests you -- a DVD about the bourbon business, for example. (I have it, albeit in an older format. Each time I view it I feel as though I'm taking a tour of bourbon country.)

Yours truly,
Dave Morefield

You think we could get Charels to Join... what do you think Chuck?

:deadhorse:

I am sure it was in jest fellas, or he thought that "Cowerdy" was someone else... it could happen...

... just for teh record, I am not really the Cookie Monster :skep:

callmeox
10-15-2008, 19:22
Yeah? I'm really Mr Briscoe Darling. :grin:

(calm down, boys)

cowdery
10-17-2008, 15:39
I hear this Cowdery guy is nothing but trouble and a damned liberal to boot.

But I'm very glad you like the book, B1. Thank you.

OscarV
10-17-2008, 15:57
I hear this Cowdery guy is nothing but trouble and a damned liberal to boot.


Not only that but I hear that this Cowdery guy supports for President a candidate that has fathered African-American children.

Special Reserve
10-17-2008, 16:05
That Cowdery guy must be dangerous! I think he should give a talk to those Michigan bourbon hounds.

ThomasH
10-17-2008, 16:20
I here that Cowdery was born in Ohio. That alone qualifies him for outlaw status!

Thomas

OscarV
10-17-2008, 16:38
That Cowdery guy must be dangerous! I think he should give a talk to those Michigan bourbon hounds.


I here that Cowdery was born in Ohio. That alone qualifies him for outlaw status!

Thomas

HEAR, HEAR!!!

This Cowdery guy must be dealt with!!!

callmeox
10-17-2008, 16:39
Chuck Cowdery invented the bolt-action rifle, bourbon, sexual intercourse, and football-- in that order.

barturtle
10-17-2008, 17:06
Chuck Cowdery invented the bolt-action rifle, bourbon, sexual intercourse, and football-- in that order.

That's was Chuck Norris...

spun_cookie
10-17-2008, 17:14
BIB = Back In Bars for Cowerdy :D are the rest of the claims accurate Chuck... my hats of too you :p

callmeox
10-17-2008, 17:25
That's was Chuck Norris...

tsk tsk

You only think that because Norris has a better press agent.