View Full Version : How do you drink your stash?
Hi everyone. I very much enjoyed the recent thread "show us your stash". But this raised in my mind a question for those of you who have a "collection" of several (or more) bourbons. My question is: how do you go about drinking your stash? Meaning this: Do you have one or two bourbons that you drink most of the time, dipping into your collection only occassionally to sample other bourbons? Or do you constantly rotate through your collection? And if you're settling down for an evening of bourbon enjoyment, do you pick a bottle and stick with that, or do you sample your way through two more more different bourbons in the course of an evening?
I'll start by answering the question myself: I now have a collection of about 15 bourbons (I'd post on "show us your stash", but I don't have a digital camera). If I'm having a drink, I'll have a pour of one bourbon, and if I have another pour (or more) I will rarely repeat with the same bourbon. In other words, if I'm having a couple of glasses then I like to sample several tastes in the course of an evening. And I find myself continually rotating through the collection, never sticking very long with one brand, lest I forget what the others are like.
I started out by keeping only one bottle in the house; I wouldn't try another bourbon until I finished the bottle that I had. Now I keep about ten or so brands on hand, and like you, I like to "taste around." http://www.straightbourbon.com/ubbthreads/images/icons/smile.gif
I constantly rotate through my collection. Bottles that cost more than about $35 get special treatment, I don't drink them as often as the others. But I still drink them, occasionally.
The only bottles I have that I am trying to make last forever are not bourbons. One is a Remy-Martin XO cognac, the other is a 150th anniversary bottling of Grand Marnier. I bought both of them in 1990. The Grand Marnier is probably the best tasting spirit I've ever tasted.
I guess I have about 30 different open bottles or so right now. I don't really have a rhyme or reason to my drinking, just whatever seems to fit the bill at that moment. I tend to go for the lighter-bodied ones when it is warm and I have been active. The fuller-bodied ones on a badweather day, or if I am stressed out. Of couse I try to make the special or expensive bottles last a little longer, but that doesn't seem to keep me from tapping into the WT 12yo. http://www.straightbourbon.com/ubbthreads/images/icons/smirk.gif
I guess I have a few that are my "regulars": Weller 12yo, Old Forester 100, Elijah Craig 12yo and Wild Turkey 100 all get poured at least once a week or so. But then so does the Stagg and the Kentucky Spirit http://www.straightbourbon.com/ubbthreads/images/icons/confused.gif
Robby, over the years I have tasted and studied many bourbons, but I do not collect them. I keep about forty or so of my personal favorites on hand at all times. They are all for drinking. I just don't see the point of buying something just to have it and never drink it. http://www.straightbourbon.com/ubbthreads/images/icons/confused.gif - Linn
I tend to only have one drink a night, and rotate fairly evenly through my 25 or so bottles. Only 4 bottles get the special treatment cause replacing them means a road trip to KY (which me may start doing more often. . . .)
Whenever I buy a bottle I usually buy 2, unless it is very expensive or something that I was even lucky to have found 1 of. If it is something I have had and it is hard to come by, a great price, or just something I really really like I may buy several and bunker away many of them. But one bottle always ends up in the collection for display and stays there.
Then I usually have 6 bottles open at the same time. I may have 2-3 bottles in the collection that are open, but mainly the collection stays untouched and the opens stay in a different area. As I finish a bottle from the opened bottles, I go into the bunker at the far back of the closet (whish is under the steps leading into the basement so it goes way back) and grab another bottle from amongst the many that I have not had in a while. I always try and keep between the 5-6 opens a barrel proof, single barrel, rye, etc... Each one a little different so I can choose what I feel like that night.
I live in a small place and with my collection taking up alot of room, I don't have the space for a big bar to have many opens at one time, unfortunatley. This will, I hope, all change soon. Even with rotating fairly evenly through my opens, I usually will need to open something new about every 2-3 weeks. Some nights I have 2 drinks and other I have several more... Just depends on the type of day it's been. http://www.straightbourbon.com/ubbthreads/images/icons/wink.gif
Probably too often for my health and definitely too quickly for my wallet. http://www.straightbourbon.com/ubbthreads/images/icons/crazy.gif
Right now I have 19 open bottles, which is about all my allotted shelf will hold. If I had more shelf space, I am sure I would have more open.
I only bunker stuff I can't get locally (e.g., from trips to KY) or what may (or may not be) limited (e.g., GTS, ORVW Rye 13 yo).
Like Linn, I buy to drink. Though, I understand those that like to save a bottle of each. Nothing wrong with collecting if it gives you pleasure and you can cough up the money for it.
I go in phases as to which open bottles I pour from. Lately, I've backed away from the Stagg. Last week I hit the ORVW bourbons nearly every night. I am now almost out of 107/10 yo and 107/15 yo. http://www.straightbourbon.com/ubbthreads/images/icons/frown.gif So, this past weekend I started hitting the less expensive bourbons, Old Forrester 100, and Buffalo Trace.
Tonight (and hopefully more nights his week), I am taking a break. I need to get alot of stuff done this week and having a drink at night just takes away all the ambition.
If I am sitting down for a week-end of drinking I will try to stick with one distilley, usually Heaven Hill Distillery or Wild Turkey. I have somewhere in the neighborhood of 100 different labels and I am a collector, but everything I have with the exception of 1 or 2 bottles, I will pop the cork on. The bottom line is that I rotate quite a bit. What I have been drinking lately is Evan Williams Vintage '88, '90, '91 and '93. Also Elijah Craig 12 & 18 YO, but for 2 nights last week my friend bought a bottle of the Distiller's Masterpiece (new one aged in portwood) - we drank the whole bottle and it is not nearly as good (in my opinion) as the one aged in cognac barrels.
Grand Marnier 150 is on my "special shelf" too. I opened it when our first (only so far) child was born almost 5 years ago. I only pour it once per year, her birthday or the day we celebrate it. IMHO it is the best liqueur ever made. http://www.straightbourbon.com/ubbthreads/images/icons/tongue.gif
No question about it.
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