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raiderx
02-01-2010, 15:42
Hi folks,

I'm pretty new to the bourbon scene, but I've been scouring the threads here and hope to expand my knowledge quickly. So far my liquor cabinet contains Knob Creek, Bulleit, Maker's Mark, and Old Forester Signature 100. All good in their different ways, but I'd count the Old Forester as my current favorite.

After spending $25+ for my first few bottles of bourbon, I've decided to check out all the recommended brands that are under $20. I'm using these two threads as my primary guide for now.

http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/showthread.php?t=12990
http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/showthread.php?t=8142

Anyway, I'm glad to be here and I'm hoping to soak up some knowledge.

fishnbowljoe
02-01-2010, 19:36
Welcome to the site. Looks like you have some decent bourbons to start with. It also appears that you've done a little homework too. :grin: Nice job. Keep watching and reading. Lot and lots of info to be found here. Official chats are Thursday and Sunday nights, but you never know when folks might show up. It's been almost every night as of late. Looking forward to your posts. Cheers and enjoy. Joe

p_elliott
02-02-2010, 09:04
Welcome to the site, there is a lot to learn here. Looks like you've started out well that bulleit will open up as it breathes. Joe is right about Chat stop in and join us some time. Post often, ask questions, give us your opinions, make some new friends and just have fun.

raiderx
02-02-2010, 20:44
Thanks for the welcome. I forgot about the last bit of a bottle of Gentleman Jack I had sitting in my cabinet. I poured it tonight to make some room for something new to be determined.

I think I've ruined myself for the Tennessee product. It seemed almost watered down compared to the Old Forester. I could taste the banana and the brown sugar, but it also had a very sharp rubbing alcohol bite to it that I just couldn't get over.

I poured a small shot of Old Forester and what a difference! Smooth, light syrup mouthfeel and tastes of caramel and vanilla, turning toward rye/leather. The alcohol added a spiciness, but didn't overpower everything like it did in the GJ.

I used to love Gentleman Jack. What the hell is happening to me???? :rolleyes:

p_elliott
02-03-2010, 08:42
The bourbons you are drinking are higher proof than the Tennessee whiskey you were used too. Now your used to the bourbon and the JD seems mild and watered down which it is.

raiderx
04-16-2010, 13:16
Well after some more experimentation, this is the running liquor cabinet list, from favorite to least:

Wild Turkey 101 (Cheapest and the best as far as I'm concerned)
Bulleit (Wife's fave and I have a great fondness for it myself - under $20 at Trader Joe's)
Old Forester Signature 100 (loved this at first, but it's lost its luster a bit - still good, though)
Knob Creek (under $20 bucks at TJ's - enjoyable at the price and more sweet/caramel for a contrast to the first few)
Woodford Reserve (Pleasant, but seems a little weak - wife called it a girl's drink - I'll keep it for company)
Elijah Craig 12 yo (I think I'm missing something here - maybe got a bad bottle)
Maker's Mark (Just a mixer for me - tastes like the inside of a barrel)

Of those, the big question marks for me are the last two. The Maker's confuses me. There is some kind of disturbing flavor, almost moldy, to this bottle. Bad batch? It's not like it has a cork, so I fail to see how it could develop the offensive flavor, unless it was pre-bottling. I need to try this at a bar and see if my opinion changes.

I think I'm going to give the Elijah Craig another chance, considering how much folks here like it. The cork has a dark stripe running through it, which could just be color, but could be a bad cork. It's got some weird, hard to pin down flavor (almost chemical in nature) that's interfering with my enjoyment.

Dramiel McHinson
04-16-2010, 18:34
...The Maker's confuses me. There is some kind of disturbing flavor, almost moldy, to this bottle. Bad batch? It's not like it has a cork, so I fail to see how it could develop the offensive flavor, unless it was pre-bottling. I need to try this at a bar and see if my opinion changes.

I think I'm going to give the Elijah Craig another chance, considering how much folks here like it. The cork has a dark stripe running through it, which could just be color, but could be a bad cork. It's got some weird, hard to pin down flavor (almost chemical in nature) that's interfering with my enjoyment.

One way to calibrate your nose to see if it's "cork taint", 2,4,6 trichloroanisole (TCA), is sniff wet news paper or the stem on a ripe banana first then sniff the cork, cap, bottle, or whiskey. TCA is very prevalent in cork but can be transfered to the bottle in a number of other ways too. The presence of chlorinated water seems to activate the growth of TCA. That's why it's important never to wash cork in tap water.

I'm starting to believe that moldy, wet dog, gym socks, banana stem, and damp horse stall are permanent notes for nosing Elijah Craig but I haven't heard of Maker's Mark trying that yet so maybe you got a bad bottle.

Res/st-or
04-17-2010, 23:06
The bourbons you are drinking are higher proof than the Tennessee whiskey you were used too. Now your used to the bourbon and the JD seems mild and watered down which it is.

Same with crown royal... I don't care to pay for water.

Welcome raiderx

VERITAS
04-18-2010, 10:16
Welcome fellow Norcalian! I would highly recommend checking out Buffalo Trace as well - around $22 at Bevmo... One of my favorites regardless of price.

ErichPryde
04-18-2010, 13:01
One way to calibrate your nose to see if it's "cork taint", 2,4,6 trichloroanisole (TCA), is sniff wet news paper or the stem on a ripe banana first then sniff the cork, cap, bottle, or whiskey. TCA is very prevalent in cork but can be transfered to the bottle in a number of other ways too. The presence of chlorinated water seems to activate the growth of TCA. That's why it's important never to wash cork in tap water.


Very good to know info.

ebo
04-18-2010, 16:11
Welcome raiderx. I'm assuming with a name like that, you are a Raiders fan?

unclebunk
04-18-2010, 17:00
Welcome aboard. Sounds like you're off to a good start. One thing you'll learn over time as you read various threads and make more and more bourbon purchases is that you don't have to spend lots of money in order to find excellent quality whiskey. There's plenty out there under $25 that will knock your socks off (and lots under $20 that will do the same, for that matter). Just have fun with it and keep an open mind. Judge for yourself what you like and dislike, but remember that your tastes will likely change dramatically as you are exposed to different brands and expressions. As Fishnbowljoe always says, it's all good!

raiderx
05-10-2010, 19:41
Thanks for the comments, folks.

Regarding the bottle of Maker's Mark, it turns out it was a bad bottle. I've tasted several samples at bars and they were all consistently good. I contacted the distillery and the Quality Manager wrote back. We're going to trade my bottle for a fresh one and they're going to send the bad one to the Maker's Mark lab for tests.

As for the Elijah Craig, I think it's just a different flavor palate then the others. It does have a bit of an acetone hint to it, but the bottle seems to have mellowed since opening. It's starting to grow on me.

Buffalo Trace is next on my list.

And yes, ebo, I'm a Raiders fan. Might finally be a good year for it. :rolleyes:

Enabler
05-10-2010, 22:56
Yeah, you got rid of Jemarcus.

ebo
05-14-2010, 16:23
Thanks for the comments, folks.

Regarding the bottle of Maker's Mark, it turns out it was a bad bottle. I've tasted several samples at bars and they were all consistently good. I contacted the distillery and the Quality Manager wrote back. We're going to trade my bottle for a fresh one and they're going to send the bad one to the Maker's Mark lab for tests.

As for the Elijah Craig, I think it's just a different flavor palate then the others. It does have a bit of an acetone hint to it, but the bottle seems to have mellowed since opening. It's starting to grow on me.

Buffalo Trace is next on my list.

And yes, ebo, I'm a Raiders fan. Might finally be a good year for it. :rolleyes:
I've been bleeding Silver and Black for 43 years. It's about time we get back to being the Raiders!

ebo
05-14-2010, 16:24
Yeah, you got rid of Jemarcus.

Thank God! :grin:

raiderx
05-17-2010, 19:27
Thank God! :grin:

LOL, no doubt!

To end the "bad bottle of Maker's Mark" saga, the local marketing rep showed up at my work today and swapped me a 1.75 L bottle for my bad 750 ml. Just cracked it open and it is just fine.

(I still like WT101 better!)