View Full Version : Hello from old Virginia.

10-23-2008, 09:19
Really nice board folks. Been reading a while, great info and reviews.

A favorite uncle introduced me the virtues of a glass, a couple cubes and decent bourbon. I'm looking to broaden the understanding of the finer points of really good Bourbon. Though not very bold when it comes to changing from something I like, to something that might just be better, I think I've come to the time in life to try some of the finer things and there is no better place to start than with Bourbon.

I have learned a ton from reading your reviews and have even stepped outside the comfort zone with good results. So I guess I'll start the journey with a trip through Heaven Hills and see what happens. If you folks have any suggestions I'd love to hear them. If not I'll try to post anything of interest.

PS My comfort zone is somewhere around Rebel Yell and Elijah Craig.

10-23-2008, 11:09
Hey Wilber, welcome aboard you are in a great part of the country, I love the coastal area of Virginia and Maryland.

Suggesting bourbons is tricky for me because a lot of people put price as a starting point.
I see you said that RY and EC are what you are comfortable with.
I'm not sure if you mean price and/or taste.
I'll kick out a couple for you.

WLWeller Special Reserve, a low priced wheater around 20 bucks or lower.
Old Rip Van Winkle 10 year old, an awesome wheater but at least twice the price.

Can you get Four Roses in VA?
If so get their Single Barrel, a ryed bourbon for 30 bucks.
Wild Turkey Rare Breed, another ryed, about 5 bucks more.

10-23-2008, 11:26
A high price for an average Bourbon is criminal, but average is in the mouth of the beholder. Not shy about spending more for something I find wonderful.
Haven't tried Weller SR, but have heard some good things here. Don't know about Four Roses, but I will find out. As far as WTRB, I got a bottle from a friend for Christmas a couple years ago, Didn't read the warning label about Proof. Love the stuff just have to be careful not to have the second.
I guess, with all due respect the Van Winkle group should be experienced without an interuption to the flow. I plan on devoting a year, maybe 2010, to the project.

10-23-2008, 12:57
Welcome aboard!

I'm not quite sure as to the groundrules of your project. If your plan is to focus on Heaven Hill, then whichever Elija Craig you've tried, (12 y/o or 18 y/o) you'll find the other one interesting and completely different. You'll also want to try the bottom-shelf Evan Williams as well as any Evan Williams Single Barrel vintages you find. My favorite HH bottling is the seldom seen Henry McKenna single barrel.

See here for a list of bottlings by distillery (http://www.straightbourbon.com/brands.php?choice=distillery), including HH. I'm told that the BIB bottlings from HH are all worth trying; I've never had the opportunity.

Yours truly,
Dave Morefield

10-23-2008, 15:15
Welcome Wilber. You come from a great area. I was in the Virginia Beach/Norfolk area for a few months many years ago. Loved it. As far as your project, don't limit yourself to products from one distillery. There's so much great stuff out there, it's unbelievable. I kinda took the same path you did. I monitored the site before joining. The folks here have provided great info, and answers to any questions I had. It was great meeting a lot of them at the KBF this year. Over the last few months I have tried many, many bourbons. I didn't limit myself. I tried bourbons from almost every distillery, and all price ranges, and mashbills. If you limit yourself to just one distillery, you'll miss out on being able to compare the diiferences of bourbons from different distilleries. There are times it can be truly eye opening. Trying a wide variety of bourbons has slowly helped me understand just what my taste preferences are. I have settled into a very comfortable niche with 90-100 proof bourbons, aged in the ten year range. Although I have found what I prefer, I still like to try other bourbons. Nothing beats a good surprise.:bigeyes: Move around a bit. Try a $10 bourbon. Try a $40 bourbon. Experiment with ages. Buy a wheated bourbon, and then try one with more of a rye mashbill. Have some fun with it. It's all good.:woohoo: Anyway, welcome to the boards. Have a good one. Joe

PS Sorry if it came across like I'm preaching too much.:soapbox: I just really like bourbon, and being a part of SB. I was also trying to pass along some of what I have learned from all the great folks here.

10-24-2008, 05:47
Thanks for the welcome and advice folks, ya'll make a fella feel as comfortable as a pair of sweat pants and a glass of Rebel yell.

This practice of opening new bottles could be habit forming, I may never buy this same brand twice again. Tried my first SB last night, WOW, that's different. EWSB on sale for $18.00, nothing like the regular.

As far as a game plan, well, I'm sure it will be adjusted many times over the course of this venture. The first plan was to take a straight walk through the distillerys and keep it simple. It seems the more I sample the less I remember. That plan is out the window, now I'm going with what Joe said "Try them all".

I read a post about finishing a favorite bottle, sad to be sure. I can forsee the time with hundreds of bottles with just one pour left, lining the shelves of my den. Not finding the courage to put them to rest.

Anyway, off this weekend in the camper with some good friends and my most recent sampling, I picked up OscarV suggested WLWeller SR. Should go quite well with friends and a campfire.

10-24-2008, 14:28
Welcome from a fellow Virginian! Fortunately, the VA ABC stocks a pretty decent selection of bourbon at pretty good prices (esp. on sale), but it can get a little boring after awhile.

10-24-2008, 18:55

Welcome. I too live here in VA (No. VA). Four Roses is not available in VA yet. The Wellers are not available unless you request it via special order. I was in an ABC store last week in Middleburg and they have Weller Antique and Special Reserve but it was only because the special order was never picked up. If you can find out the ABC item number, then they will order it for you. I would suggest you visit your local ABC manager and have a discussion with him/her and gauge their willingness to acquire off shelf bourbons on your behalf. Some will, some won't. The manager of the Middleburg store was very willing to help me out.

Your other option is to purchase bourbon via internet stores such as Binny's Liquor, Julio's liquor or Shoppers Vineyard. The ship to VA.

Let me know if you have any further questions......again, welcome.

10-27-2008, 06:00
Yeap, finding some limitations in the ABC stores, but I did find the Weller SR although it was the only bottle they had must have been a fluke. We have a new and improved store which has a much larger selection of good stuff.

That said Binny's just may be my new favorite web site. Spent a good while on there Last Friday and spent less than a C note. UPS guy should be bring some new goodies soon.

PS The weller went extremily well with the campfire.