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View Full Version : Very Rare Old Heaven Hill Bottled in Bond 10yr



G-Rat
03-21-2009, 14:15
Hey Folks...especially those in Kentucky:

Does Heaven Hill still make this whiskey...I would love to try it.
The latest thread on it dates back to last May and shows a bottle that was purchased that looked to be bottled in 2006. It was surmised that the juice was from DSP-KY31 the old Heaven Hill Distillery...then there are no more threads on it. It also seems like lose threads connote that it was hard to find or rare to find it even then. Were those the last bottles put out just before the fire and then because of said disaster there isn't any anymore?

I would Love to get a bottle or two of this. Is it still widely available in Kentucky?

Garrett

cowdery
03-21-2009, 14:24
It appears to have been discontinued but there may still be some dusties out there.

G-Rat
03-21-2009, 14:29
That's too bad. Is it the same with the 8yr old expression as well?
Thanks for the quick reply too.

cowdery
03-21-2009, 14:31
The oldest I've seen recently is a six-year-old.

G-Rat
03-21-2009, 14:33
thanks...so of Heaven Hill's current bottlings the oldest Bonded one they have would be Henry McKenna (which was good I thought). I assume that the Heaven Hill Bonded is much the same as the Dant Bonded and the Evan Williams Bonded they put out.

cowdery
03-21-2009, 15:46
thanks...so of Heaven Hill's current bottlings the oldest Bonded one they have would be Henry McKenna (which was good I thought). I assume that the Heaven Hill Bonded is much the same as the Dant Bonded and the Evan Williams Bonded they put out.

Not necessarily. It's all about barrel selection. All of these products are bottled infrequently because they are low volume, and it's a matter of what's available (i.e., what whiskey is mature) at the moment in the quantity needed. With bonds, you are stuck using only whiskey from a single season, so it's hard to make adjustments. Obviously, they all start out the same, but barrel selection can make a big difference when the products are bottled. Although these are cats and dogs, for the most part, I assume they also have a profile for each and make an effort to adhere to the profile for each label.

G-Rat
03-21-2009, 16:24
that's true I had not thought of that. I guess I just got the impression that there were so many labels at Heaven Hill that there was no way they were putting that much time and effort into each of these smaller runs of Bonded Bottles. But I guess tat selection would have to vary from year to year anyhow with barrel selection anyhow and between each product as well...

squire
03-21-2009, 20:13
I enjoyed the 10 yr bonded and drank it regularly years back but haven't seen any available for the last 6 years or so.

MikeK
03-23-2009, 09:13
It appears to have been discontinued but there may still be some dusties out there.

Damn!! I've got a bottle open of this right now that I picked up in KY about 1 1/2 years back. Great stuff for the $$. I'll have to try and find some more while it lasts...

Virus_Of_Life
03-28-2009, 00:46
I'd buy a case of this stuff if I ever came across it. It is one of the best bang for the buck bourbons I've ever had. This and EW BiB are exceptional values at their price!

squire
03-28-2009, 12:12
Hey Christian, my take is the same. I discovered this brand about 18 years ago while in Bardstown, tried it and returned to Toddy's for a case to go.

smokinjoe
03-28-2009, 13:01
When this one went, it went quick! I always picked up at least a couple of these gems every time I went to Kentucky. When I heard it was being discontinued I intended to grab it by the case. Unfortunately, I was too late :( It was a terrific, low cost bourbon.

MissingKY
03-28-2009, 13:55
Joe, I noticed the same thing that when this disappeared from the shelves, it disappeared quickly and completely. I'm originally from western Kentucky, and bourbon actually doesn't always move all that quickly there. (I've cleared a lot of good mid-90's dusties out of my hometown in the last few years.) There was always a ton of VROHH on the shelves when I was home, and it always seemed like I got some sort of, "Don't sell much of this one..." comment when I bought a bottle. I don't think it was a big mover at any of the places I shopped.

Then, one trip home, it had totally disappeared over a period of like 3 months between last summer and last fall. I went to every liquor store in town, probably 7-8 in all, and I couldn't find one lousy bottle of it. A lot of these places had had dozens of bottles just a few months earlier. The disappearance was so quick and so complete that I wondered if a distributor had run a buyback for it or something. It's a real shame, because this was one of my all-time favorite bourbons. Not just for the money, but I really thought it was great whiskey regardless of the price. It's definitely in my top 10.

G-Rat
03-28-2009, 14:19
Sad sad news folks...do you think that the dissapearance of this Bourbon has anything to do with the fire at Heaven Hill and their desire to pull a less profitable lower end label to keep producing stuff like Elijah Craig and the like...or am I completely misreading the situation? I would LOVE to get a hold of some of this.

G

squire
03-28-2009, 15:49
G my take on it is Heaven Hill wanted to use their aged stocks in more profitable brands.

G-Rat
03-28-2009, 16:03
squire that makes total sense. And for Heaven Hill's part this makes sense as well with trends (now standards) towards supreme bourbons being the main offerings...like everything else in the food and drink world.

The next questions is:
Did this ever sell outside of Kentucky? If so I'm sure there is some lying around somewhere...

squire
03-28-2009, 17:01
I asked that very question from someone who would know and was told "not sure" and then the guy launched into a distillery anecdote.

mozilla
03-28-2009, 17:07
HH can bottle any label that is current with the TTB. It is only that they choose not to.

As far as other more profitable labels....which might those be? None of the HH stable are very pricey. Last time I found some VROHH Bib...it was $12/750ml.

Some VROHH 8yr 86 has been spotted in Oregon...some time back.

squire
03-28-2009, 17:07
Just occurred to me there should be no reason the Distilleries couldn't buy back their product and dump it into a new melding. Whiskey laws and regulations are so screwy sometimes, anybody know? Chuck, MikeV?

Virus_Of_Life
03-28-2009, 17:34
Last time I found some VROHH Bib...it was $12/750ml.

Some VROHH 8yr 86 has been spotted in Oregon...some time back.

And the 8year 86 proof is good and similar to the 10yr BiB (I have an open bottle now), albeit more expensive here in Oregon. But then again, most booze is more expensive in Oregon than most places.

G-Rat
03-28-2009, 20:33
HH can bottle any label that is current with the TTB. It is only that they choose not to.

As far as other more profitable labels....which might those be? None of the HH stable are very pricey. Last time I found some VROHH Bib...it was $12/750ml.

Some VROHH 8yr 86 has been spotted in Oregon...some time back.

Mozilla...good point. What's the TTB?

While HH certainly has a stable of decently priced good whiskey (I sure think its good whew!) Most of those labels are older less flashy ones: Bonded labels or antiqueish ones (Old Fitz, Henry McKenna, JW Dant and the like).

With the current market trends toward small batch, single barrel or premium seeming products it would seem to me to be a smart business decision to pull labels like this one. Meaning not so much that they make higher priced labels that older whiskey should go towards but instead market trends condition where the whiskey is going to end up...in the more premiumish, small batch, single barrel type products (although the only single Barrels they make that I know of are McKenna and Elijah 18 and Evan Williams)

But then again maybe I'm talking outta my butt and there are many others here (like yourself) with much more knowledge than I have on stuff like this...I just wish this stuff was still available because it would be an incredible bargain.

barturtle
03-28-2009, 20:35
Mozilla...good point. What's the TTB?



Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau.

G-Rat
03-28-2009, 20:36
Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau.

Ahh yes...thanks

barturtle
03-28-2009, 20:41
But then again maybe I'm talking outta my butt and there are many others here (like yourself) with much more knowledge than I have on stuff like this...I just wish this stuff was still available because it would be an incredible bargain.

I don't think any of us, or the distillers for that matter, like to see any brand having to be taken off the shelf. Unfortunately, current market trends, as well as a sales forecast made years ago, has put them is situations where there just isn't enough juice aged and ready to drink to support every label they currently make (or recently made, as the case may be)...it think the saddest part is that the lost shelf space vacated by the brands will never be regained.

G-Rat
03-28-2009, 20:45
I think the saddest part is that the lost shelf space vacated by the brands will never be regained.

So true...so true.

mozilla
03-29-2009, 07:24
Mozilla...good point. What's the TTB?

While HH certainly has a stable of decently priced good whiskey (I sure think its good whew!) Most of those labels are older less flashy ones: Bonded labels or antiqueish ones (Old Fitz, Henry McKenna, JW Dant and the like).

With the current market trends toward small batch, single barrel or premium seeming products it would seem to me to be a smart business decision to pull labels like this one. Meaning not so much that they make higher priced labels that older whiskey should go towards but instead market trends condition where the whiskey is going to end up...in the more premiumish, small batch, single barrel type products (although the only single Barrels they make that I know of are McKenna and Elijah 18 and Evan Williams)

But then again maybe I'm talking outta my butt and there are many others here (like yourself) with much more knowledge than I have on stuff like this...I just wish this stuff was still available because it would be an incredible bargain.

I don't really buy into the "Small Batch" or "Single Barrel" group of enthusiasts. These are just ways that the distillers try to pry more money out of your pocket. IMO, the best bourbons are batched. Batching gives one a complete taste of the pie...instead of just one slice that could contain alot....or not many flavors that you would expect.

Small batch...actually has no meaning or regulation to keep it honest. FYI: When Barton batches bourbon...it is in less than 80 barrels. When WT batches their regular Bird...it is in 5000 barrel batches. Beams SB is around 250 barrels, IIRC.

Single barrel gives the distiller a chance to put whatever he wants in a bottle. If it's bad or off....oh well, tough break for the purchaser.

Why does it matter if a label is old or new? Flashy or not? All I really care about is the flavor to price ratio. If they(HH) put VROHH in a label that was turd brown...I wouldn't care. Just keep the price affordible and I am all over it.

Don't fall into the trap of paying more money for the same juice. All distillers make a consistent product...to the best of their ability. Most only make one type of juice. So, why pay alot more for juice that has a fancy bottle or label. Take BT for example: Why pay for Blanton's SB when you can get an older less expensive bottle of AAA 10yr? Because it's a single barrel? They both come from the same juice. So, why is Blantons above $40 and the AAA around $15? Don't be a sucker! OR...a follower of marketing propaganda.

squire
03-29-2009, 07:44
Jeff, I don't have access to Heaven Hill's sales figures so can't say as to which brands are more profitable. Considering the demand for aged product from the new producers it is plausible that Heaven Hill makes more money in bulk sales than if they bottled it themselves.

mozilla
03-29-2009, 07:58
While that may be true...

I seriously doubt that any two years are ever the same across the board for sales or accounts receivable. They do a ton of bulk and bottling for their accounts. (Aside) HH really does a great job with their warehousing and bottling. It will blow your mind to see the bottling house. It is a marvel.

HH has a million labels. They will bottle a label when an order comes in for it. Most of these labels are only sold in select markets and are very hit and miss to begin with.

Without seeing their production numbers for each label and knowing their attitude towards their huge collection of labels...it is really hard to comment accurately on how they forsee the future of their brands.

I can't think of too many reasons...a distiller would completely pull one of their own labels. Cost for keeping it alive in the market being the biggest cost factor, against it.

squire
03-29-2009, 10:14
The whole place is impressive but I haven't toured it since before the visitor center was built.

G-Rat
03-29-2009, 12:19
I can't think of too many reasons...a distiller would completely pull one of their own labels. Cost for keeping it alive in the market being the biggest cost factor, against it.

Mozilla -

This is exactly what I'm talking about. Cost of keeping it alive in a market trended (foolishly...as you and I both agree) towards flashiness and marketing gimmicks. Imagine being joe consumer and walking into your neighborhood grocery store to get some cans of soup. You get there and look at the selection and see some with labels that look like they are from the 1970s and then you look a little higher on the shelf and see some with more current looking labels. Trick is the same stuff is essentially in both. Which does Joe consumer buy...he buys the newer looking ones because he feels...key word here is feel...like it is a safer bet because it looks more kept up and cooler.

Same thing going on with bourbon...you can either get yourself some Elijah Craig that has some modern packaging or you can get the VROHH 10yr that looks like its been sitting there for 20 years because the label looks old school. Now you and I know what the better deal is. 12 for the 750 of 10yr juice or 20 for the same juice mixed with some older stuff (or however HH makes The Craig). Eventually it costs too much to keep the VROHH on the bottling line because they can't push as much of it in comparison with the flashier looking stuff.

I don't fall for the gimmick. I want the old school label that isn't as hip and doesn't say 'small batch' or 'single barrel' on it...because at the end of the day I want a good affordable pour of bourbon and that's it.

scratchline
03-29-2009, 15:26
One thing you can be sure of is that HH doesn't make EC12 by mixing 10 year bond with some older stuff. The youngest whiskey in EC is at least 12 years old.

-Mike

cowdery
03-29-2009, 16:51
In some of their core markets, like Kentucky and Tennessee, but also the Carolinas and other parts of the South, Heaven Hill has always done big business with the Heaven Hill label. They offer a lot of different expressions and not just in bourbons. They have blends, and even white goods like gin and vodka, that they sell under the HH brand name. Whatever it is, it's always a great value.

Some of these products are actually owned by distributors, which is too complicated to explain here.

But whether it was a distributor or HH itself that pulled the plug on the 10-year-old BIB, the reason is the same. Well-aged KSBW is too valuable right now to sell it that cheap. The product's appeal was its great value so if they raised the price it would lose its primary appeal, so better just to discontinue it.

It's unrelated to the fire. Any supply problems the fire may have caused cleared the pipeline years ago.

There's no more to it than that.

G-Rat
03-29-2009, 23:08
Chuck thanks for clearing that up.

Mike - Right. Duh. Knew when i typed that that something was wrong but just kept typing.

Sorry to any and all or just Mozilla maybe for beating a dead horse. At least it felt that way.

G

mozilla
03-30-2009, 06:12
No need to be sorry. We are here to discuss bourbon and bourbon accessories. That's why this site is called Straight Bourbon.....and NOT, Straight Off Topic.

boone
03-30-2009, 22:44
Without seeing their production numbers for each label and knowing their attitude towards their huge collection of labels...it is really hard to comment accurately on how they forsee the future of their brands.

I can't think of too many reasons...a distiller would completely pull one of their own labels. Cost for keeping it alive in the market being the biggest cost factor, against it.

#1 Reason why it's not there....Demand for the product has deminished. I can remember years ago bottling this product in 1.75 handle bottles....that was years ago. Someone was ordering it quite regular back then. Slowly, the numbers went down and the size of the orders bottle/numbers went with it.

mozilla
03-31-2009, 07:18
Bettye Jo,
Is there something we can do as a group that would help keep some of our favorite "odd" labels alive at HH?

The two I would like to see kept alive are:
Very Rare Old HH 10yr Bib and Dowling Deluxe 8yr Bib\

Texas only gets one HH Bib and that is Old Fitz. Sure is tough being a fan of HH when almost none of their Bib's make it here.

squire
03-31-2009, 11:42
We are fortunate in getting a full line of Heaven Hill products in Mississippi.

wku88
04-03-2009, 20:58
I don't buy that explaination, Boone. I've preached to the rafters on numerous occasions on this very forum that VROHH BiB is really EWSB '95 for half the price...and it seems those that actually tried it agree with me it is an exceptional whiskey regardless of price. As noted by several in this thread, it was a dusty, but once folks found it, it went quick. I know I'd buy it by the case now, as I had in the recent past. It may not sell as much as the God awful green label, but I bet they could bring it back and charge $15 a 750, and it'd sell like icewater in the desert.

mozilla
04-03-2009, 22:19
I don't buy that explaination, Boone. I've preached to the rafters on numerous occasions on this very forum that VROHH BiB is really EWSB '95 for half the price...and it seems those that actually tried it agree with me it is an exceptional whiskey regardless of price. As noted by several in this thread, it was a dusty, but once folks found it, it went quick. I know I'd buy it by the case now, as I had in the recent past. It may not sell as much as the God awful green label, but I bet they could bring it back and charge $15 a 750, and it'd sell like icewater in the desert.

HH only makes one ryed bourbon. So, yes...everything starts from the same distillate.