View Full Version : Poll: Top 5 Whiskeys

01-12-2001, 22:32
I remember when this board started up folks listed their favorite bourbons, but we haven't done it in a while so here goes. Please list, in order of preference, you're top five American whiskeys (bourbon and rye). I'm curious about whether any of the newer products (Sazerac, Weller 19, WT Russell's Reserve etc.) have become favorites.

01-12-2001, 23:21
The top 5...so far

Jim Beam's Distillers Masterpiece - 18 Yrs.
Pappy Van Winkle's Family Reserve - 20 Yrs.
Buffalo Trace's Eagle Rare - 17 Yrs.
Wild Turkey's Kentucky Spirit
Jefferson's Reserve and Johnny Drum - 15 Yrs. (tie)

Let the angels take their share, baby! Older IS better!

Eat well. Laugh often. Sip bourbon.

01-13-2001, 04:29
Good to see you're still with us Henry!
1) - Kentucky Spirit
2) - Blanton's or Elmer T. Lee - It depends on the barrel.
3) - Woodford Reserve or Russell's Reserve - take your pick.
4) - Knob Creek
5) - Elijah Craig 12 YO or Single Barrel Vintage 1990 10 YO - take your pick.
6) - For a wheater - Very Special Old Fitzgerald 12 YO

Linn Spencer

Have Shotglass. Will Travel.

01-15-2001, 13:56
1) Sazerac 18 YO rye
2) A.H. Hirsch Reserve 16 YO
3) Old Charter 12 YO Classic 90
4) Wild Turkey Rare Breed or Russell's Reserve (tie)
5) Very Special Old Fitzgerald 12 YO

Really want to include Elmer T. Lee Single Barrel in here, too.


Theron Volkman
01-15-2001, 16:04
1.) Kentucky Spirit
2.) Russell's Reserve
3.) Old Charter Proprietors Reserve
4.) Rare Breed
5.) VSO Fitzgerald

01-15-2001, 22:25
Good pick Theron with Old Charter Proprietor's Reserve! It's been such a long time since I've had a bottle and I'd forgotten it even existed.

Linn Spencer

Have Shotglass. Will Travel.

01-16-2001, 10:38
My five favorites, though not in any particular order.

1. Knob Creek
2. Woodford Reserve
3. Old Fitz BIB
4. Evan Williams Single Barrel
5. Blanton's

Honorable mention: Old Commonwealth

--Chuck Cowdery (http://cowdery.home.netcom.com)

01-16-2001, 17:27
Good bourbon does not need to cost a fortune. Try these.
1) Weller Special Reserve
2) Wild Turkey 101
3) Very Old Barton Bottled in Bond
4) Old Forester 100 Proof
5) George Dickel No.12 (Yes I know it is a Tennessee Whisky, but deserves a place on my list.)

01-17-2001, 19:01
Wow! Top five, huh? That's really difficult. Just last year it was so easy. Hmmm.

I can see from some of the other posts that I'm not the only one having a problem selecting a top five...

4. Old Commonwealth and Woodford Reserve and Elijah Craig 12
5. Russell's Reserve and Maker's Mark and Knob Creek and EW Single Barrel and Rare Breed and Johnny Drum and McCormick and Bookers and Laphroig and...

C'mon guys and dolls, now that's cheating!

What I did for me was, I set up some further restrictions and filters.

First, I said to myself, "Self," I says, "there shouldn't be any bourbons here that are not currently being made. Unfortunately, that restriction filters out some of my bigtime favorites, such as

(1) Henry Clay (maybe my all-time favorite bourbon ever)
(2) Old Rip Van Winkle Family Reserve Pappy's 20-year-old - the old style (a year ago I hated this bourbon. Now I love it dearly. Go figure)
(3) Elmer T. Lee 107 proof (first kisses should be this sweet and pure... and hot)
(4) Old Taylor - 1979 National Distillers version (Linda's all-time favorite whiskey ever)
(5) David Nicholson 1843 (basically 7-year-old Old Fitzgerald with a custom label, and a finish that lingers into next Tuesday)

It also, technically, rules out single barrels, since the particular ones currently available are no longer being made. I've modified that a little to allow single barrels that are so consistant that they don't vary significantly, but I'm afraid it does keep favorites Kentucky Spirit and the Evan Williams' vintage bottlings out. There's just too much variation between bottlings of these fine whiskeys to generalize.

(2.5) Kentucky Spirit 1998 barrel #1
(5.5) Evan Williams Single Barrel Vintage 1990 barrel #251

Then I figured, how can you compare boutique, distillers' showpieces with everyday shotglass bourbon? So I'm gonna need at least two lists, sorted by price. But as I started putting a top five together, I found that my favorites all seemed to cling to the dividing line between the two lists. So I made it three lists...

<u>LIST #1: BOURBONS THAT SELL FOR UNDER $15.00 (Kentucky discount liquor store prices)</u>

(1) Old Grand Dad 100
(2) George Dickel #12 (this is too a bourbon, yes it is; and the millenium began in 2000; don't get me started, just deal with it)
(3) Wild Turkey 101
(4) Ancient Ancient Age 10-year-old (please, Ken, tell me this doesn't belong on the list above)
(5) Colonel Lee 100

Runners up: Old Ezra Brooks 7-year-old, Old Fitzgerald's 1849, Dowling 100, Kentucky Gentleman 100

<u>LIST #2: BOURBONS PRICED FROM $15.00 TO 30.00</u>

(1) Ezra Brooks: Ezra B 15-year-old
(2) Wild Turkey Russell's Reserve
(3) Old Rip Van Winkle 15-year-old
(4) Buffalo Trace
(5) Peter Jake's 10-year-old

Runners up: Old Weller Antique 107, Wild Turkey Rare Breed, Knob Creek, Wathen's, Old Forester 100


(1) Old Rip Van Winkle Family Reserve Pappy's 20-year-old - new style
(2) Jack Daniel Single Barrel (see above ranting about George Dickel)
(3) Booker's
(4) Pure Kentucky XO
(5) Rowan's Creek

Runners up: Noah's Mill, Baker's, Black Maple Hill 14-year-old, all of the Buffalo Trace Historic Collection (Weller, Eagle Rare, Sazerac), Blanton's, George Dickel Special 10-year-old


01-17-2001, 23:02
Talk about cheating! John you're triple cheating and then some. Must be the bourbon.

Linn Spencer

Have Shotglass. Will Travel.

01-18-2001, 06:16

Th' problem ish, ya gotta try 'emall sho asta beeyable ta make a shedish... a dishish... shisshhh... choice.


Ken Weber
01-18-2001, 14:11
Ancient Age 10 year old will be around for some time. Actually, and this may be a point against us, Jim Murray has listed this as one of his all-time favorite bourbons.


01-18-2001, 18:27
Ken said, "Ancient Age 10 year old will be around for some time. "
Hooray!! I'm with Jim on that one, as you can see from my list. On the other hand, Jim's all-time LEAST favorite bourbon (he considers it the singular worst whiskey ever made) is Colonel Lee 100 BIB. That brand, which even Barton doesn't seem to mention unless asked, rates #5 on my cheap list, and is only that low because the list includes bourbons up to fifteen dollars. It would be #1 on a list of under $10.00 brands. He also doesn't like Old Fitzgerald or Wathen's much but thinks Old Crow and Jim Beam Yellow-label rye are terrific. I really enjoy reading Jim's work and I've learned a lot from him. Mostly what I've learned is to appreciate that the incredible range of choices available is bourbon's best feature of all, and that to limit yourself to what you (or worse, someone else) already enjoys is to really miss out on the best part of the bourbon experience.


01-18-2001, 18:40
Okay. This was a tough one. Don't get me wrong, I've tasted better American whiskies than what's in my list below, but these are what I drink the most of. I think availability and price has a lot to do with it. If Buffalo Trace was available here in Kansas, then it would be my number one "grab". After I buy a few cases in Kentucky this September, the Old Charter will get bumped off the list.

1. Eagle Rare 10-year old
2. Berghoff 10-year old 107
3. David Nicholson 1843 7-year old
4. George Dickel Special Barrel Reserve 10-year old
5. Old Charter 12-year old


01-19-2001, 19:04
Thanks to all for participating in the poll. One thing that interests me is that only John listed (along with everything else under the sun) Van Winkle 15.
When I first got into bourbon and started following this forum to see what I should try, there seemed to be a consensus that VW 15 was one of the two or three finest. Indeed it became and remains my favorite. I was surprised to see it not mentioned more. Anyway, here is my top five:
1) Old Rip Van Winkle 15
2) Wild Turkey 12
3) Knob Creek
4) Rare Breed or Elijah Craig 12 (tie)
5) Woodford Reserve
A year ago Weller Centennial would have been second but my taste has evolved away from wheaters and towards rye bourbons(VW 15 is in its own category as far as I'm concerned). Still, haven't tried Bookers, Blanton's, Old Charter and many others. So many bourbons...

01-20-2001, 09:07
Henry what are the 15 year old Van Winkle's quatities that make it so special as to be your number one pick? I've never had any and it's not available here in Virginia.

Linn Spencer

Have Shotglass. Will Travel.

01-20-2001, 22:08
I think some of the lists are, in part, a function of budgets. Old Rip 15 might very well be one of my favorites if I could afford to have it more often.

--Chuck Cowdery (http://cowdery.home.netcom.com)

01-21-2001, 16:42
For me the VW 15 smells and tastes of lucious dark fruit (dates, figs, berries), tobacco, spice (I especially detect cinnamon) and caramel. These and other flavors are very distinct and keep coming in wave after wave. I also love its full-bodied, mouth-coating texture and very long finish. It is similar to VS Old Fitz but more so. You must get hold of a bottle, Linn.

01-21-2001, 18:23
Concise, succinct, and sans any sort of verbose over-qualification, here are my five favorites (unsorted):

Hirsch 16
Elijah Craig 12
WT KY Spirit


Jim Butler

01-21-2001, 19:27

I've been following this thread - that description was a killer! I live in Western PA, and I can't get the VW 15, and I'm dyin' out here, thanks to wordsmiths like you guys! Same goes for Russell's Reserve and a lot of the other stuff...I guess I'm going to have to practice my bootlegger turns and run some booze across state lines...

Ralph Wilps

01-21-2001, 20:35
Ralph, try some of the special State Stores listed here (http://www.lcb.state.pa.us/Retail/specialtystores.asp). Most Pennsylvanians don't realize it (since it's illegal for them to tell you unless you ask!), but there are quite a few stores where better brands and higher quality may be found. Another thing they don't tell you is that you can order any wine or spirit in the world through your local state store. Ask about the SLO (Special Liquor Order) program. You can also get a new ammendment to the U.S. Constitution passed via your local State Store, in approximately the same amount of time and with slightly less effort.

Seriously, do give one of the specialty stores a try. I've seen many good bourbons, including Pappy 20 and Hirsch, at the one in Maple Glen. In fact, it's the only place I've been able to find Virginia Gentleman 90 proof (the fox bottle).


01-22-2001, 06:07
I shall do so sir! Julian always manages to scounge out the best barrels of Old Fitz to put in his bottles. I'll be sure to set aside some funds for a couple. I'll have to wait until September to get 'em. Are you going to make the Bourbon Festival this year Henry? Be sure to bring extra pants!

Linn Spencer

Have Shotglass. Will Travel.

01-22-2001, 09:58

Thanks for the list - I knew about all of the Allegheny County specialty stores except the one in Verona - I'll check it out. By the way, did you notice that there are more of the these stores in the Pittsburgh/Allegheny County area than anywhere else? Must be a subtle influence exuding from the rocks here - I don't think the Whiskey Rebellion ever really got finished up along the river valleys.

Ralph Wilps

01-22-2001, 20:39
It may also be the quality of the average consumer there. Now watch all my Philly ex-neighbors and family get all bent out of shape at me for saying that :-))

The truth is, though, that they have to do that for the same reason you pointed out originally... there's nowhere else to go. In Philadelphia, people with discerning tastes can go to Delaware, New Jersey, or even the Big Apple. These people's Pittsburgh counterparts don't have that luxury (where are they gonna go, Ohio?), so they put pressure on State officials to accommodate them more. Your gain!


02-27-2001, 15:46
Hello, I find it almost impossible to limit my selection to just 5 whiskeys. I like John Lipmans idea of several list according to price. I have waited this long to post my suggestions as I have been trying various whiskeys the past month or so. I believe I have sampled enough to start to get an opinion of what makes my list of favorites. I am going to cheat a little and break it down to 2 list one over $35 and the other under $35 .
My list is in no particular order.

Over $35
Van Winkle 15yr 107 Proof
Wild Turkey kentucky Spirit
Eagle Rare 17yr
16yr Hirsch.
Sazerac 18yr Rye or Jack Daniels Single barrel Take your pick.

(note I have not tried my 20yr pappy & 20yr Hirsch & 19yr Weller)

Under $35
Van Winkle 13yr Family Reserve Rye
1990 Evan Williams Single Barrel
Wild Turkey Rare Breed
Weller Centenial 10yr
Knob Creek & Russells Reserve & Buffalo Trace 3 Way Tie. I like them all.

Go Figure a month ago I hated Buffalo Trace now I really like it. Creggor.

02-27-2001, 16:04
Ah-Ha Creggor my man!

A month ago you hated Buffalo Trace and now you love it enough to put it on you top 10 list. Kudos for you.

Here ladies and gentlemen we see a pearl of bourbonic wisdow in action - to wit: When you open your mouth open your mind also.

Linn Spencer

Have Shotglass. Will Travel.

02-27-2001, 17:16
Says Linn, "...When you open your mouth open your mind also."

From what I've observed in myself and others on this forum, when you open your mouth to insert fine bourbon into it, the mind quickly follows all by itself, don'tcha think?


02-28-2001, 07:46
Indeed sir I do! In fact the more empty the bottle becomes the more wide open I get. When the bottle is empty I become very like St. Luke and have perfect knowledge of all things. Once I've slept it off, however, I find that all I really know is that I need to buy another bottle of bourbon. It's a sad fact that the sober know next to nothing while the properly bourbonized philosopher knows it all!

Linn Spencer

Have Shotglass. Will Travel.

03-01-2001, 03:18
Very Very Old Fitzgerald
Geo Dickel Special Barrel Reserve
Old Grandad 114 Proof
Very Special Old Fitzgerald
Knob Creek

The Man from Missouri

03-01-2001, 03:36
As your invitation to list your top five picks was on top I mmediately jumped into the water and posted my list. Then after reading the rest of lists and comments I can see I am going to have sell one of my old used cars in order to try some of the other brands listed. Thanks you all for opening up a whole new world for me!

The Man from Missouri

03-01-2001, 04:57
Welcome, Brother Ray, to our (and now your) little corner of the whole new world. A couple of comments...

(1) With a list like yours, it's pretty clear you already have experience with some fine bourbons. The difference in quality between, say, Knob Creek and Booker's is less than the difference between Jim Beam White Label and Knob Creek.

(2) In places where brands like those are available, they often also sell those cutesy-poo miniature bottles. Aside from their use as affordable collectibles, they can also provide a good opportunity to taste, at five or six bucks, a bourbon that might cost a dozen times that much for a full 750ml bottle. Of course, I don't recall ever seeing a mini of Hirsch, Pappy, or VVOFitz...

(3) ... which leads into this one: If you have enough Very Very Old Fitzgerald to make that your current favorite, I'd be <u>REAL</u> careful of giving out your home address to some of the folks on this forum, no matter what plausible reason we might give you :-))


03-01-2001, 05:00
So true!


03-01-2001, 22:59
Thanks for comments and info. My dear brother seems to have a man in his pocket who's been sitting on this for years. It's better than ice cream. I'm not a novice in drinking whiskey or bourbon; just a novice at becoming literate to what I have consumed.{enough to float a small battleship}

Thanks again

The Man from Missouri

03-04-2001, 18:26
Hmmmm. Maybe it's time for this ol' Kansas boy to impersonate Quantrill and do a Missouri raid for fine old bourbons.......


03-08-2001, 23:24
OK after much study on the subject I have finally come up with my top 5 list. (which is much simpler than John's!)

Russell's Reserve
Van Winkle 15
Buffalo Trace
Evan Williams single barrel
Woodford Reserve

my top all time favorite Bourbons that are expensive or not available any longer are
Henry Clay
Pappy 20 (the new bottling)
Old Taylor (from sometime in the 50's or 60's)


03-09-2001, 16:43
An excellent list, Linda, in part because it is 40 percent the same as my own.

Are they ranked in order? That indeed would be a strong endorsement of Russell's Reserve. I regret that I have not obtained any Buffalo Trace as of yet, but am now even more looking forward to doing so.

--Chuck Cowdery (http://cowdery.home.netcom.com)

03-10-2001, 09:27

Actually I wasn't trying to put them in order although the Van Winkle 15 would be first and then the Russell's Reserve! Both excellent Bourbons.
It's funny, I also didn't like Buffalo trace the first time I tasted it. (same as others on the forum) and it is also now in my top 5 list!! I think that it tastes like the air smells in springtime. (not the floral scent but the fresh earth smell when the ground is finally warming up!)
Thats probably as close to tasting notes as I'll ever get :)


03-10-2001, 14:34
Linda I've found that women really like Buffalo Trace, especially those that mix with Sprite as you and Vickie do. Must be an Earth Mother kind of thing. /wwwthreads/images/smile.gif

Linn Spencer

Have Shotglass. Will Travel.

03-10-2001, 22:20

It may be something like that, although the only thing I mix with sprite is usually Evan Williams black label. The bourbons on my top 5 I drink straight. No water or ice. I like my earth neat!


03-26-2001, 13:57
This should be real easy as I only have 5 bottles so far. I needed another hobby so I thought I'd try collecting and drinking bourbon. The purchases I've made are from reading posts on this site. I'll rate the 5 I have so far from favorite to least. Jefferson's Reserve bottle 1332, Ezra B single barrel 15 year old barrel 17(I haven't seen anyone mention this one but I like it), Bookers, and the last two are equally bad so I'll just list them, Old Rip Van Winkle and Basil Haydens. That all I have for now but I buy a bottle every two weeks when I cash my pay check.

03-26-2001, 16:21
Loki1957 said, "Ezra B single barrel 15 year old...(I haven't seen anyone mention this one but I like it)"

Hi Loki,
It's top on my list of $15-$30 bourbons (see above).

"...equally bad... Old Rip Van Winkle and Basil Haydens."

Wow. You don't hear those two mentioned in the same sentence very often; and you don't see Old RVW at the bottom of most people's list, either. They're about as opposite in character as most people will ever find. I can see it's going to be a real challenge trying to guess what you'll enjoy http://www.straightbourbon.com/wwwthreads/images/smile.gif

Welcome to the Straightbourbon forum!


03-27-2001, 06:47
Hi, John! I hope you enjoy your new hobby. You're off to a good start, and you obviously learn quickly. Your distaste for Basil Hayden's shows you have great potential as a discerning whisky drinker. However, I am curious to know which Van Winkle you found so offensive? Van Winkle products are generally good to excellent.


03-28-2001, 07:33
I probably lack a sofisticated enough pallete to enjoy the Van Winkle. The stuff starts out bad and finishes even worse. I'll keep trying to drink it but as of now I don't like it at all. It is Old Van Winkle 10 year old. From reading posts here I was very surprized I don't like it also. One good thing, today is payday so I can purchase something new. I'm thinking about Blantons. Thanks for the welcome.

03-28-2001, 07:53
I don't think your palate is unsophisticated at all John. You may be like me in that you simply don't like/care for wheated bourbons. "Wheaters" as they are called have a mashbill consisting of wheat: corn, and malted barley. Traditional bourbons use a mashbill made with rye: corn, and malted barley. By all means do treat yourself to a bottle of the fabulous Blanton's. A traditional bourbon that is exceptional in every way it will spoil you rotten.

Linn Spencer

Have Shotglass. /wwwthreads/images/smile.gif Will Travel.

03-28-2001, 10:00
I agree with Linn: your pallete's fine. The Van Winkle 10 simply didn't suit your taste, and that's cool. Although I would suggest you sample the Van Winkle 15y.o./107, or better still, Pappy Van Winkle 20y.o., should you ever have the opportunity. As for the Blanton's, I say go for it! Let us know how you like that one.


03-28-2001, 13:54
How does one know if a bourbon is wheat or rye? I don't see that info on the label. And whats up with Basil Haydens. I think I've read that thats a rye bourbon.

03-28-2001, 14:04
Re wheat v. rye, you pretty much have to know. Wheaters are the exception. The main wheaters are Maker's Mark, Old Fitzgerald, Old Weller and most, but not all, Van Winkles. Everything else is rye.

As for Basil Hayden, it is a "version" of Old Grand-Dad, which is unique among bourbons as a "high rye" bourbon. That means it contains about twice as much rye, and proportionally less corn, than most bourbons.

--Chuck Cowdery (http://cowdery.home.netcom.com)

03-28-2001, 15:55
John I see that Chuck's covered the wheat vs. rye thing.

There really was an "Old Grand-Dad", and his name was Basil Hayden. What Jim Beam has done to screw this whiskey up is anyone's guess. I know of only two forum members that really like it; Ryan Stotz, and Greg Kitzmiller. Mike Veach, however, is one of Basil Hayden's most strident detractors in that he calls it "brown vodka". I don't care for it and don't buy it. Where drinking Beam whiskey is concerned I've found that Knob Creek is always good and worth the price paid.

Linn Spencer

Have Shotglass. /wwwthreads/images/smile.gif Will Travel.

03-28-2001, 19:15
Hello, Everyone. I must agree with Linn. The Knob Creek is the best value for the money in the Beam line. I do like Bookers better but at $50 a bottle it had better be good. I tried Basil Hayden once and did not like it. I have not tried the Van Winkle 10yr old but dearly like the 15yr Van Winkle. Creggor

03-28-2001, 19:29
The Rip Van Winkle 10-year-old is the least impressive of the Van Winkle line, but it's still a pretty good bourbon; the older ones are better. HOWEVER... you just might not happen to like wheaters. Linn hates them all (except for Very Special Old Fitzgerald, which I don't care for all that much) and he's as descerning a taster as you'd ever want to be.

Linn's absolutely right about Knob Creek. I agree with him and Creggor; I think you should make that your next purchase. Especially since you like Ezra B so well. Both are chock full of character, but very different from one another. Both are reasonable in price (they cost about the same).


03-29-2001, 06:01
John, here's one more vote for the Knob Creek. I finished off my latest bottle of this wonderful whisky the other night, and it never fails to satisfy. May I also suggest several other whiskies that are in the same general price range ($20-$25)--Wild Turkey Russell's Reserve, Evan Williams Single Barrel Vintage 1990, and Woodford's Reserve. All three give you a big bang for your buck.


03-29-2001, 07:46
Damn, so many John's around here it's starting to feel like a brothel!

All joking aside, I guess I just don't understand the fascination you guys have with Knob Creek. That stuff tastes just like Jim Beam white label with the proof pumped up to me (yes Linn, I've actually consumed it.) I guess the fancy packaging gets it in this case.

Reminds me of a cartoon I saw in National Lampoon when I was a kid. A man sits at a table, aghast at what has been proffered by the waiter. The waiter says "It's a fried telephone book; we gave it a fancy french name, and you ordered it." Seems a fitting simile to me.


Jim Butler

03-29-2001, 08:34
<font color=green>I like it.</font color=green> <font color=red>You don't.</font color=red> <font color=yellow>That's the beauty of bourbon Jim. We are all children of the corn.</font color=yellow>/wwwthreads/images/wink.gif

Linn Spencer

Have Shotglass. /wwwthreads/images/smile.gif Will Travel.

03-29-2001, 13:25
I took your advise and bought the Knob Creek. While I was at the liquor store I bought an Evan Williams single barrel 1988 vintage. That was before I saw this post. We must have mind melded. Anyway I got home and promply sampled each. This was just a quick taste I really like the Evan Williams alot. Very smooth. I like the Knob Creek too but not as much. I will have to sample more this evening.

03-29-2001, 17:15
Basil Hayden was designed to appeal to the people who drink blended whiskey or Canadian. Need I say more? Brown Vodka man, it's brown vodka.
Mike Veach

04-06-2001, 13:18
Here's my $.02: (Favorite Bourbons)

1) Van Winkle 15 yo 107 proof
2) A. H. Hirsh 16 yo
3) W.L. Weller "Centennial" 10 yo 100 proof
4) Van Winkle 13 yo Rye
5) Sazerac Rye

(Honorable Mentions:
VSO Fitz 12yo,
Charter Oak Proprietor's Reserve 13yo,
Russell's Reserve 10yo)

My Favorite Value-Priced Bourbons:

Knob Creek
WT Rare Breed
Old Granddad
*Old* Beam Black-Label *8yo*
Old Overholt
WT 101 proof
Evan Williams 7yo
Old Ezra 7yo 101 proof
Old Forester (w/ a splash of spring water)

Special Note: Some batches of Booker's and Blanton's have been mindblowingly good! :)


04-06-2001, 18:00
I too have fond memories of the old Beam's Black Label, 8 year old. It was essentially a 90 proof Booker's at a fraction of the price.

--Chuck Cowdery (http://cowdery.home.netcom.com)

04-14-2001, 18:25
Hello, Again. I have been absent the past couple weeks form this form have been spending more time to my stocks rather than to my Bourbons. Well today is my 53rd Birthday and of all the Bourbons I have to choose from i chose the 16yr Hirsch. Tried it again tonight. Tried it first neat and loved it more than any other to date. Its really a wonderfull drink. My son in law matt also liked it but Matt's skills kinda revolve around my saying i like the stuff. Any how after trying many of the best Bourbons available today I have once again refined my 5 top favorites. They are in no particular order.
1. 16yr Hirsch
2. 90 Evan Williams
3. 13yr Van Winkle Family Reserve Rye
4. Wild Turkey Kentucky Spirit
5. 15yr Vanwinkle 107 proof

Please note I have not tried my 20yr Hirsch and 20 & 23 yr Pappy Vanwinkle. Saving the 20yr Pappy for my first grandchild this summer and the 23yr Pappy if and when my son gets married or my first granddaughter is born. The grandchild due this summer June 10th is a boy and the 20yr pappy is set aside for this special occasion. So many good Bourbons really hard to just choose top 5. I did really like the 16yr Hirsch tonight. Creggor. I must also give a special mention to Bookers. neat it's a real Bourbonic adventure. Creggor.

11-06-2001, 18:40
Per Linn's suggestion, I am re-opening this thread.

Since I started seriously tasting, I have only tried about ten or eleven bourbons. I listed Blanton as my single favorite in his thread, but I'm not including it here because it has been so long (about 14 years) since I tasted it.

Anyway, here are my top 5:

1) Wild Turkey Rare Breed
2) Knob Creek
3) Woodford Reserve
4) Elijah Craig 12 year old
5) Wild Turkey 101

Hard to eliminate, but somebody had to be sixth: Old Forester 100 proof. And the Evan Williams 1991 Single Barrel is very good, too.

Cheers, Tim

11-06-2001, 23:04
Hello, Tim & Linn. last night on Linn's board about your favorite all time bourbon I again mentioned my top 5 and suggested we see what the top five are again of other fourm members. I wrote mine of my birthday April 14th and looked at the top five I had mentioned last night. Not quite sure what I had previously wrote I was supprised to see the same 5 as before. I might add that the 91 Evan Williams is just as good or better than the 90 version. I did not include my all time favorite 20yr New version Vanwinkle Pappy Family Reserve. As much as I would like to drink it everyday I can not afford to do so and I feel it would take away from that special feeling I get when I do have some and or offer it to friends.

11-07-2001, 07:06
That's a pretty good list you've got there Tim. I've reviewed my own list, and now have a newer cheaper version. I've removed all single barrel bottlings. They should have their own list.

In order of deliciousness:

1) Labrot & Graham's Woodford Reserve Distiller's Select

2) Jim Beam's Knob Creek

3) Wild Turkey's Russell's Reserve

4) Old Charter Proprietor's Reserve 13 year old

5) Virginia Gentleman 90 proof 'The Fox'

All of the above costs less than $30 per bottle, but they are all high quality small batch bourbons that are surpassed only by the very best single barrels.

As far as single barrels go - I like all of the bottlings from Buffalo Trace; Blanton's, Elmer T. Lee, Rock Hill Farms, and Hancock's President's Reserve. All delicious in every way. Add to that Wild Turkey's Kentucky Spirit; Heaven Hill's Evan Williams Single Barrel Vintage 1991, and Charles Medley's fabulous Wathen's Single Barrel and there you have the very best bourbons available on the market today.

Am I cheating or what?

Linn Spencer

Have Shotglass. Will Travel.

11-07-2001, 16:36
So, I guess after I manage to acquire Blanton, Kentucky Spirit, Rock Hill Farms, and Elmer T. Lee, I need to squeeze van Winkle Pappy Family Reserve onto my wish list.

Whew. This is going to be fun!


11-09-2001, 12:59
Hello, Linn. Just curious. Have your tried 16yr Hirsch and 17yr Eagle Rare..Every bit as good or better than most on your list. Just my opinion Take care Creggor.

11-10-2001, 10:03
Yes I have Creggor. Thanks to Chris & Kris Giammarco I got my first taste of the 16 year old Hirsch at the special tasting event at Buffalo Trace. It is gloriously good bourbon. Is it worth $80 a bottle? I haven't bought one. It's also difficult to get. None of the liquor stores I visited in Kentucky had any. This is why it is not on my list. All of the bourbons on my list are widely available and easily affordable. There is an exception in the Virginia Gentleman 'Fox' in that it does have limited distribution. But I do like it very much, especially when it's on sale for $17!

I've had both the Eagle Rare 17 year old and also the 10 year old single barrel. It's not bad, but the all of the bourbons on my list are better.

I might as well speak to the Van Winkle's while I'm at it. They do not appear on my list for many of the same reasons - price & availablity. What I have tasted I do like. I bought a bottle of the 15 year old Old Rip and it is good. I just happen to like the six year old Fox better. It's crisp and clean and young and plucky! Good flavor and good character - in this case younger is better!

Creggor it is all too easy to fall into the older is better trap and also the more expensive it is the better it must be bugaboo.

Always think for yourself. Does it taste good to you and is it worth the price paid? When you answer yes to both of these questions then you have a bourbon that you can enjoy no matter what anyone else may say.

Linn Spencer

Have Shotglass. Will Travel.

11-10-2001, 10:31
I forgot to mention it, but I noticed last weekend that my local Beverages & More is now carrying "the fox" for $21.99.


Jim Butler

11-10-2001, 11:42
That IS good news Jim! Buy it and tell yourself 'Merry Christmas' then I'll just keep the bottle that I was going to send you as a present! I know that its not fair, but I will send you a Christmas card anyway!

Linn Spencer

Have Shotglass. Will Travel.

11-12-2001, 15:38
Henry - My five top bourbons in order Wild Turkey Russell Reserve, Ezra B, Old Charter proprietors reserve, Knob Creek, Old Fitzgerald. This was really a hard decision to make as tomorrow my pallet may change. I consider all bourbon the nectar of the gods, except one - and you be the judge- I bet John Lipman knows.

11-14-2001, 17:59
Hey Linn whats up with the yellow type you cannot read it

The Man from Missouri

11-14-2001, 19:03
Ray the original forum software was quite a bit different when that post was written. There was no way for me to know that it was going to be unreadable, and no editing ability to change it afterwards. The new version of the 'threadsfree' software is much improved. Also, as you can see, I <font color=red>rarely</font color=red> use colored text anymore.

Linn Spencer

Have Shotglass. Will Travel.

01-02-2002, 16:08
This has been one of the most informative threads for me to read, I thought I'd post my top 5 bourbons/rye to keep it going.

Russell's Reserve
Knob Creek
Evan Williams Single Barrel '91
Sazerac 18 year old Rye

This is a fine forum, I've learned a lot here over the past month or so reading these posts. A mighty friendly bastion of bourbonia. Thanks, y'all for the useful info.

01-02-2002, 19:56
That is a fine list, Carl.

I've never tried the Russell's Reserve (yet), but my top choice is Rare Breed, also from W.T.

I've also never tried (or even seen) the Sazerac rye.

And Blanton's, Knob Creek, and EWSB '91 are also among my top favorites.

Thanks, Tim

02-04-2002, 19:45
This could easily become my favorite web site . I've been reading posts and getting up to speed the last few days. My favorites are , in no particular order after the Wathens,
Ezra sb 15YO
10YOVanWinkle 107Proof
Woodford Reserve
Elijah Craig
Old Taylor
Well thats 6 actually there are more . I have some older bottlings of the Taylor , as yet unopened from National. I do like the Beam version of it . My 22 year old son has a thing for Wild Turkey I used to tell him there are better Bourbons out there, I was doing some tasting with a friend and there was a half 750 ml of it he left behind so we got into that . It is very good . I have a good collection going I tend to be slow about opening sealed bottles and then once they are open finishing them rather quickly (for me anyway) . All that I have open at the present time is the 10yo 107Van Winkle the Ezra sb and a bottle of Kentucky Pride with an advertised age of 10 years but if you do the math on the Bottled date minus the Distilled date it is 13 years old . I found one at Old Ky Home Liquors in Bardstown and 2 more at liquor outlet.

02-05-2002, 10:40
OK Bobby C. Where were you during the last Bourbon Festival? Your user profile is like totaly blanked out. Would you like to tell us something of yourself? We are all honest folk here and we like to know just who it is we're a-talkin' to.

Linn Spencer

Have Shotglass. Will Travel.

02-05-2002, 12:14
Top 3 Bourbons+2 Tennessee Whiskys:

1. Maker's Mark
2. Knob Creek
3. Old Forester
4. Dickel No. 12
5. Jack Daniels Old No. 7 Black Label

I am relatively new to Bourbons and TN Whiskys so my list is very basic. As time goes by I hope to make amends and add some new names.


02-05-2002, 18:24
Linn, I am remiss for not putting much there I have been reading the posts and hadn't got around to it . There's a little info about me there now . As for the Bourbon festival, I was there. I worked at the Bourbon Festival Commitee Tent. I had Sam Cecil autograph his first edition of his book , he told me a really funny story about my grandfather when they both worked for Bill Samuels at Deatsville .

02-06-2002, 05:52
Thanks Bobby. Yes I met Sam for the first time at last year's Bourbon Festival and bought his second edition which he also autographed. He's a fine old gentleman.

Linn Spencer

Have Shotglass. Will Travel.

02-07-2002, 21:41
Linn , Sam's a fine old gentleman indeed. I bought my copy of The Evolution of the Bourbon Industry in Kentucky from Flaget Nally at Oscar Getz whiskey Museum , on a whim actually. I started reading it and when I got to page 103 my grandfather is pictured at the bottom of the page. (Shorty Snellen) Along with Sam , Elmo Beam and others .It was taken at T W Samuels distillery .The picture is in the second edition but further up than page 103. Needless to say I was pleasantly surprized, I didn't know it was in there , what luck! I also have a copy of Bluegrass,Belles ,and Bourbon by Harry Harrison Kroll another great bourbon book, Sam mentions it at the beginning of his," Harry Harrison Kroll, a University of Tennessee professor wrote the most comprehensive book on the Kentucky Distilleries I have ever read...."

Bobby Cox

02-08-2002, 05:45
That's very cool Bobby. Your grandfather's photo is on page 109 of the second edition. Good shot too!

Linn Spencer

Have Shotglass. Will Travel.

03-27-2002, 22:57
who the heck knows if anyone will read this thread anymore but here is my favorites out of my limited tatings:

1. WT Kentucky Spirit
2. Blantons Single Barrel
3. Makers Mark
4. Evan Williams '90
5. Jack Daniel's single Barrel (I know its not bourbon, oh well)

05-23-2002, 18:33
This is just a silly post, but it would be awfully easy for it to become true:

1) Kentucky Spirit
2) Rare Breed
3) Russell's Reserve
4) Wild Turkey 101
5) Wild Turkey 80

Really, just kidding. I've never tasted Ky Spirit or WT 80. But, RB, RR, and 101 are so good, it wouldn't surprise me a bit if Ky Spirit went to the top of my list if I did taste it. I just put the WT 80 at the bottom to complete the example.

Lucky for me, I do still greatly appreciate some bourbons from other companies: Blanton's, Woodford Reserve, and Knob Creek are strong competitors. But WT has a remarkable product line across the board. Ky Spirit will very likely be the next super expensive bourbon I splurge on.

Maybe for my birthday in July.....


05-23-2002, 18:38
To follow that last post, I have settled on my REAL (current) top five. I can't assign an order, though, these are all too good. So, in alphabetical order:

Knob Creek
Rare Breed
Russell's Reserve
Woodford Reserve

11-14-2002, 19:21
I know this thread is old, but I have not yet had the pleasure of participating, so here goes:

1 -Kentucky Spirit
2- Booker's
3- Rare Breed
4- Old Forester 100
5- Jefferson's Reserve

As you can see I tend to like the higher proof more full-bodied bourbons. And, much to Linn's delight i'm sure, no wheaters currently hold a top 5 position http://www.straightbourbon.com/ubbthreads/images/icons/wink.gif

11-14-2002, 19:43
http://www.straightbourbon.com/ubbthreads/images/icons/cool.gif BLeeee! http://www.straightbourbon.com/ubbthreads/images/icons/cool.gif

11-14-2002, 19:47
Alright, I'm game!....Here goes...
1. Woodford Reserve
2. OF Birthday Bourbon
3. Elmer T. Lee SB
4. WT Rare Breed
5. JD Single Barrel (I know, I know, but I'm listing it anyway!! http://www.straightbourbon.com/ubbthreads/images/icons/smirk.gif I think this should be a Top 10 list! http://www.straightbourbon.com/ubbthreads/images/icons/mad.gif There are so many that I have left off!...Bookers, Jefferson Reserve, etc..If someone doesn't do it, I may just post a Top 10 list! http://www.straightbourbon.com/ubbthreads/images/icons/laugh.gif See ya, H'wood http://www.straightbourbon.com/ubbthreads/images/icons/cool.gif

11-14-2002, 23:23

Jeff, you may be the biggest wheated bourbon booster on this board, and there is not one to be found. Have you lost your way???? http://www.straightbourbon.com/ubbthreads/images/icons/confused.gif http://www.straightbourbon.com/ubbthreads/images/icons/confused.gif http://www.straightbourbon.com/ubbthreads/images/icons/confused.gif

Tom (Why man, WHY!?!?!?!?!?) C

11-15-2002, 06:15
I Know, I know, but the introduction of KS knocked my MM out of the running. It is still a solid #6 or 7. Weller Antique 107 is a good bourbon, but has done little to bolster the wheat movement's hold on my taste buds. Of course, I may have to re-think this whole thing once I get to sample some of the VW products.

11-15-2002, 16:30
</font><blockquote><font class="small">In reply to:</font><hr />
Of course, I may have to re-think this whole thing once I get to sample some of the VW products


Jeff , Things take back seats , side seats , and generally moved down a notch when you put the VanWinkles' in the equation. The good thing is , you have a very smooth and enjoyable ride coming up! http://www.straightbourbon.com/ubbthreads/images/icons/cool.gif

11-15-2002, 21:21
OH how naive I once was!! http://www.straightbourbon.com/ubbthreads/images/icons/blush.gif http://www.straightbourbon.com/ubbthreads/images/icons/blush.gif !! Now that I have tasetd some real bourbons, a new top 5 list:

1. Wild Turkey Russell's Reserve (10 Year/ 101 Proof)
2. Old Rip Van Winkle 10 Year 107 Proof
3. Old Forester Birthday Bourbon
4. Elmer T. Lee Single Barrel
5. Elijah Craig 12 Year

Wow, what a difference 8 months makes!

Tom (ever changing tastes) C

11-15-2002, 21:42
how cool My list would include 3 you have here. ORVW, OFBB and EC12.I can't say the other 2 because I haven't had them yet. Well I have them I just haven't had them. What fools we are however to love the Birthday Bourbon so much. It will never be again in its' present form. We can only hope that the differences will be subtle. I do have a shrinking stash of it , Discipline return to me! One can only cringe at the thought of someone chugging this beautiful Bourbon on a loading dock and chasing it with coke. Wishing the whole time they had a bottle of Crown Royal. Believe me it's not that far out of the realm of possibilities!
I think Wathens is still on my list. I'll let the other choice revolve! http://www.straightbourbon.com/ubbthreads/images/icons/grin.gif

11-15-2002, 21:47
</font><blockquote><font class="small">In reply to:</font><hr />
One can only cringe at the thought of someone chugging this beautiful Bourbon on a loading dock and chasing it with coke. Wishing the whole time they had a bottle of Crown Royal.


Words like that can really break a guys heart http://www.straightbourbon.com/ubbthreads/images/icons/smirk.gif http://www.straightbourbon.com/ubbthreads/images/icons/smirk.gif !

Tom ( http://www.straightbourbon.com/ubbthreads/images/icons/blush.gif Wonder Who That Happened To?? http://www.straightbourbon.com/ubbthreads/images/icons/wink.gif ) C

11-16-2002, 07:16
Isn't that the nice part..we get to revise our list! http://www.straightbourbon.com/ubbthreads/images/icons/laugh.gif I'd like you to keep tasting..your number five (5) will fall off-waaaaay off! http://www.straightbourbon.com/ubbthreads/images/icons/grin.gif Seriously, enjoy what YOU like. See ya, H'wood http://www.straightbourbon.com/ubbthreads/images/icons/cool.gif

11-16-2002, 14:05

You wrote, in part, as follows:

</font><blockquote><font class="small">In reply to:</font><hr />
your number five (5) will fall off-waaaaay off! http://www.straightbourbon.com/ubbthreads/images/icons/grin.gif

[/QUOTE] In all seriousness, I hope that you are able to reevaluate your response to EC12 from time to time. Maybe it's your list that will change. http://www.straightbourbon.com/ubbthreads/images/icons/grin.gif

In my case my first reaction was almost as negative as with a couple other bourbons that I ended up dumping. And yet I realized that it wasn't as much bad as different (as compared to every other bourbon I had tried). Even now I have to be in the right mood for it, and yet that happens often enough that I recently replenished my supply -- 1.75 L. worth.

My point is that EC12 is a considerable departure from what I would consider a mainstream flavor profile; it "pushes the envelope" as the old-time test pilots used to say. Accordingly, I think it's a good idea to set aside one's initial expectations, and give EC12 time to expand your tastes. One way to do that is to drink it exclusively on the rocks for a while. IMO it holds up to ice better than any other bourbon I've tried, bar none.

As always, your mileage may vary -- just as I was unable to get past my initial distaste for Old Fitz BIB (and yet I like Old Fitz 1849) a while back. (And I was unable to muster a serious effort in the case of Old Whiskey River.)

Yours truly,
Dave Morefield

11-16-2002, 16:21
B'B'D, I think you missed it just a little bit! http://www.straightbourbon.com/ubbthreads/images/icons/grin.gif I was teasing you somewhat. I've made it clear that EC12 "isn't my favorite"! However, in that note I did say Enjoy what YOU like, because I know you will. On the other hand, I've been open to this pour many different ways, ie: neat, rocks, etc.. I've spent all of the money that I'm going to on this one. Again, too many bourbons out there I like...to waste money on ones I don't. It has had its chance! http://www.straightbourbon.com/ubbthreads/images/icons/confused.gif I'm sorry that maybe you took offense to something that wasn't intended to do so. Anyway, enjoy what you like. http://www.straightbourbon.com/ubbthreads/images/icons/laugh.gif See ya, H'wood http://www.straightbourbon.com/ubbthreads/images/icons/cool.gif

11-16-2002, 16:57

No offense taken. If my previous post suggested otherwise, then I'm responsible for not being clear.

I'm a firm believer in "enjoy what you like" -- for everyone. I also believe that some things need more than a little getting used to. Even at that, I can now see that you've given EC12 a fair trial, and it just isn't for you.

I'd just hate to have someone give up on it after only one or two drinks (as I did recently with Old Whiskey River http://www.straightbourbon.com/ubbthreads/images/icons/blush.gif ).

Yours truly,
Dave Morefield

11-16-2002, 18:01
B'B'D, Comments well taken! I have noticed that your likes are scarily http://www.straightbourbon.com/ubbthreads/images/icons/ooo.gif similar to mine. However, over 1500ML I can't make EC12 work! http://www.straightbourbon.com/ubbthreads/images/icons/confused.gif Anyway, I still value your opinion on many other pours. Thanks! See ya, H'wood http://www.straightbourbon.com/ubbthreads/images/icons/cool.gif

11-17-2002, 07:52
Here's my top 5:
1. Wild Turkey Kentucky Spirit
2. Old Rip Van Winkle 10 YO, 107 Proof
3. Woodford Reserve
4. Ancient Ancient Age 10 YO
5. Wild Turkey Rare Breed

It's tough to figure out the top 5. That's my list as of now, but tomorrow, who knows? http://www.straightbourbon.com/ubbthreads/images/icons/smirk.gif http://www.straightbourbon.com/ubbthreads/images/icons/wink.gif


11-17-2002, 14:08
Perhaps the differences will not be subtle, but the next expression could be even better in a different way! http://www.straightbourbon.com/ubbthreads/images/icons/tongue.gif I like their idea on this one. I hope they keep new and perhaps different stuff coming. http://www.straightbourbon.com/ubbthreads/images/icons/smile.gif

11-21-2002, 17:25
Due to recent events my top five must be updated. Here Goes:

1- Kentucky Spirit
2- Booker's
3- Old Forester Birthday Bourbon
4- Rare Breed
5- Old Forester 100

Sorry Jefferson's Reserve. You are a fine bourbon, but Mr. Brown has put you in your place (#6 that is) http://www.straightbourbon.com/ubbthreads/images/icons/grin.gif

11-21-2002, 23:01
Its as simple as this, and everyone who has tried it so far agrees. . .

Old Forester Birthday Bourbon = Some Damn Good Shit!

Rock On Jeff yuou snagged a good one, it has quite a bang for your buck http://www.straightbourbon.com/ubbthreads/images/icons/wink.gif http://www.straightbourbon.com/ubbthreads/images/icons/wink.gif !

Tom ( http://www.straightbourbon.com/ubbthreads/images/icons/shocked.gif http://www.straightbourbon.com/ubbthreads/images/icons/shocked.gif 800!! http://www.straightbourbon.com/ubbthreads/images/icons/cool.gif http://www.straightbourbon.com/ubbthreads/images/icons/cool.gif ) C

01-14-2003, 22:00
Till someone enlightens me:
1. Bookers (Indeed)
2. Blanton's (Worth the $)
3. George Dickel #12 (Just right!)
4. Jack Daniels #7 (I hate the fact I like this one)
5. Early Times http://www.straightbourbon.com/ubbthreads/images/icons/frown.gif (I've been to the Derby too many times) <font color="orange"> </font color>

01-14-2003, 22:18
1)Old Forestor BDay Bourbon
2)WT Russells Reserve
3)ORVW 10 Year/ 107
4)Wathen's Single Barrel
5)W.L.. Weller 19 Year

(and this is taking into account that I have got enough of THE STAGG to form an opinion. . . that it ranks a solid 6th)

Tom ( http://www.straightbourbon.com/ubbthreads/images/icons/crazy.gif Blasphemy, I Know http://www.straightbourbon.com/ubbthreads/images/icons/crazy.gif ) C

01-15-2003, 07:16
My top 5 would include:
1. George T Stagg
2. Old Forester Birthday Bourbon
3. Wild Turkey Kentucky Spirit
4. Van Winkle 13 YO Rye
5. Old Rip Van Winkle 10 YO 107 Proof
The was harder than I thought, there's so many good things out there, but those are my votes!

01-15-2003, 11:06
My Top 5 until someone can beat one/all of them are:

1. A.H. Hirsch 16 Year
2. Pappy Van Winkle Family Reserve 20 Year
3. George T. Stagg
4. Wild Turkey Kentucky Spirit
5. Evan Williams Single Barrel Vintage

Old Forester Birthday Bourbon (#6) almost made it but the value and quality of the Evan Williams put it into my Top 5. http://www.straightbourbon.com/ubbthreads/images/icons/smile.gif

01-15-2003, 13:21
Living in the great control state of Pennsylvania--where the state government operates all wholesale and retail of alcohol--I do not have access to some whiskeys which have received much praise on this site, namely Stagg and OF Birthday Bourbon. My Stagg is on special order, but Lord knows when (or if) I'll ever actually get it. I'll have to look into the availability of the OFBB. With that in mind, I present my current Top Five:

1) Van Winkle Family Reserve Rye 13yo
2) Wild Turkey Rare Breed
3) Wild Turkey Kentucky Spirit
4) A.H. Hirsch 16yo
5) Knob Creek

Moving up the charts with a bullet is Wild Turkey 12yo. Late last year, the PLCB cut its price on WT12 to $38 per. I hoarded what I could (as did others), and now the state is just about dry on that number.

Sazerac Rye 18yo was in my Top Five two years ago, but the latest release just didn't measure up to the first release, dropping it out of the rankings (but still Top 10 material).

01-15-2003, 14:07
Just Five? I thought this would be easy, but I've changed it numerous times.
Here Goes
As of 4PM 1/15/2003
1) Jefferson Reserve
2) Hirsh 16
3) Rock Hill Farms
4) Stagg
5) Weller Centennial

Ask me again at 9PM

01-16-2003, 12:12
At present...
in no particular order...

knob creek
WT rare breed
george dickel (you said american whiskies...)


01-17-2003, 19:54
George T. Stagg
Eagle Rare Ten Years 101
Van Winkle 13yr Rye
All Wild Turkeys
Jack Daniels No.7

01-17-2003, 22:14
OK Tom I'll match your Re Revision with one of my own;

1) Buffalo Trace's George T. Stagg

2) Wild Turkey's Kentucky Spirit

3) Buffalo Trace's Rock Hill Farms

4) Pappy Van Winkel Family Reserve 20 year old - Yes a wheater!

5) Brown-Forman's Old Forester Birthday Bourbon

6) Charles Medley's Wathen's

7) Jim Beam's Knob Creek

I cheated a bit and gave you a different bottle for every day of the week. I challenge anyone to say they would actually be unhappy if this weeks worth of bourbon showed up on their front porch. http://www.straightbourbon.com/ubbthreads/images/icons/grin.gif

01-17-2003, 22:55
Upset if those 7 showed up on the porch??? No way!!! A great list of great bourbons, is that. And thankfully, none of those pesky Tennessee whiskeys taint Linn's list.

01-17-2003, 23:23
</font><blockquote><font class="small">In reply to:</font><hr />
4) Pappy Van Winkel Family Reserve 20 year old - Yes a wheater!


With that kind of an endorsement, I will have to get a bottle next time I head sout to KY.


01-18-2003, 16:42
If there's going to be a Wheater listed, you sure picked a damn good one! http://www.straightbourbon.com/ubbthreads/images/icons/wink.gif

01-18-2003, 20:43
Well you know Bob, I just don't care for wheated bourbons in general, but I've come around a bit since I first set foot on the cyber-shores of Bourbonia. There are only two wheaters that I truely enjoy and those are the Van Winkel's and Virginia Gentleman's six year old 90 proof 'Fox'. The 20 year old Pappy is my hands down favorite wheated bourbon, and at $75 a bottle I wouldn't be putting out that kind of dough for anything that didn't taste a little better than great. For just plain great at $21 the 'Fox' is the wheater for you!.

01-18-2003, 23:12
Hello Linn. Way to go Linn. Just saw your revised 5 or should I say 7 favorite whiskeys. I will second your selection of the 20yr Van Winkle pappy Family Reserve. http://www.straightbourbon.com/ubbthreads/images/icons/grin.gif It is one of my all time favorites. http://www.straightbourbon.com/ubbthreads/images/icons/tongue.gif http://www.straightbourbon.com/ubbthreads/images/icons/wink.gif I have had 3 bottles so far and it's a special occasion bourbon for me. http://www.straightbourbon.com/ubbthreads/images/icons/wink.gif Thats one impressive list you have there Sir Linn. I have some Stagg waiting for me in KY. I am planning on driving up there in a few weeks just to get the Stagg. I can't wait until this July to try it.. http://www.straightbourbon.com/ubbthreads/images/icons/laugh.gif I need to try it ASAP. To keep up with you here is my list of favorite 7 one for each day of the week. Now keep in mind If the Stagg and the Birthday Bourbon are as good as you say it is. I may have to redo my list. Here it is in no particular order. http://www.straightbourbon.com/ubbthreads/images/icons/smirk.gif Creggor

16yr A.H Hirsch.

Wild Turkey Kentucky Spirit

Van Winkle 13yr Family Reserve Rye

Van Winkle 20yr Pappy Family Reserve.

Pure Kentucky XO Small Batch

Van Winkle 15yr 107 Proof

2001 Bottling of 18yr Old Sazerac Rye

01-19-2003, 08:11
I've read lots of good things about "The Fox" from yourself and a number of other Bourbonians, and it's on my list of things to buy. Once I have, I'll let everyone know what I think. I've never bought the 20 YO Van Winkle, but had the opportunity to taste it at WhiskyFest and loved it! But at about $75, it's a bit our of my price range. I have bought other VW products and love 'em all, cause they taste great and are very affordable! http://www.straightbourbon.com/ubbthreads/images/icons/smile.gif


01-19-2003, 22:07
Hello, Linn, Question for you. Looking at your list of favorites you list Knpb Creek in 7th place. My question is do you really like Knob Creek better than Blantons, Russells Reserve, Woodfords Reserve and Rare Breed?? Or is the Knob Creek on your list because of price and availability. I ask because I kinda recall your tasting notes on Blantons..Creggor..

01-20-2003, 09:31
That's easy Creggor. I already had two Buffalo Trace products on the list.Both of which I like better than Blanton's (which I do love) and I wanted to have a Beam whiskey on the list. I just happen to love Knob Creek. It's widely available while things like George T. Stagg and the 20 year old Pappy aren't. http://www.straightbourbon.com/ubbthreads/images/icons/wink.gif

01-20-2003, 15:19
My current top five:

1) WT Russell's Reserve (has the rich, smoky pre-Prohibtion taste)

2) Jack Daniels Single Barrel (as rich or more than the above, surely this was Jack Daniels as sold from the barrel in, say, 1900)

3) Van Winkle Old Time Rye (a world-class whiskey, luxurious)

4) Evan Williams 7 year old (best price brand in America)

5) Hirsch 16 Year old (this is the last available stocks of the legendary Michter's Original Sour Mash whiskey of Pennsylvania - it drinks like a cross between the finest aged bourbon and the finest aged cognac).

01-20-2003, 16:15
</font><blockquote><font class="small">In reply to:</font><hr />
Hirsch 16 Year old (this is the last available stocks of the legendary Michter's Original Sour Mash whiskey of Pennsylvania - it drinks like a cross between the finest aged bourbon and the finest aged cognac).


Is it the last of the 16 AND the 20yo Hirsch? I have seen a few bottles of the 20 here and there but none of the 16. Some have said that there might be a little yet to be bottled, but I can't remember what age they were talking about. The 20yo is running about $85. Should I go for it, or keep looking for the 16?

01-20-2003, 16:24
This just in: My top 5 have changed yet again. They are as follows:

1 - Kentucky Spirit (Nothing else needs to be said)

2- George T Stagg (Only #2 because of limited availability)

3. Old Forester Birthday Bourbon (Damn limited availability)

4- Old Rip Van Winkle 10yo 107 proof

5. Wathens

Honorable mentions include: Booker's, Rare Breed, Virginia Gentleman 90 proof, Old Forester 100 proof (my one time favorite), EC12yo, EWSB91.

01-20-2003, 16:26
That's a great price for the 20 year old but from what others have said and in my opinion, the 16 is a MUCH better whiskey... I like older whiskies but it seems like to 20 year hirsch is a little too matured... Like I said, just my opinion.


01-20-2003, 19:42
My understanding is that Hirsch 16 and 20 year olds are both Michter's production. I have not tried the 20 year old but the 16 year old was very special. I have seen the 16 year old recently in fine New York City liquor stores.

01-20-2003, 23:28
I am glad that there is some sense in the world again, Jeff has a wheater on his favorites list again! http://www.straightbourbon.com/ubbthreads/images/icons/wink.gif http://www.straightbourbon.com/ubbthreads/images/icons/wink.gif !


01-21-2003, 05:12
Wheaters have taken a down turn on my list as of late. While I still enjoy Maker's Mark, there are so many better bourbons out there that it quickly fell off the radar. Old Weller Antique did nothing to reaffiirm my taste for them, if anything my opinion dropped somewhat. Then along came Ol' Rip. I had tried the 20yo Pappy, which I love, but I thought that the wonderful taste profile must certainly be exclusive to the more expensive older bottles. I was pleasantly suprised with the $21 10yo 107 proof. This is one damn fine pour. Whereas Maker's Mark has become somewhat plain, and Old Weller just tastes a little off to me, Ol' Rip has many of the qualities that I associate with the better rye bourbons. It will be hard for something to knock this one off the list. I hope someone tries http://www.straightbourbon.com/ubbthreads/images/icons/grin.gif

01-21-2003, 09:49

I made a posting when I first joined this forum that said something to the effect that one of the best things about this form was watching peoples tastes evolve in what is actually quite a large range of flavors in bourbonia. Its funny because considering wheaters (except maybe makers mark) I have thought the opposite recently. Having now tasted 3 Wellers (Antique, Centennial, &amp; 19 Year), 3 Vanwinkles (10/107, 15/107/ Pappy's), and Old fitz BIB I think I have shaken the initial bias I had against them. I dont consider myself a "wheated" or a "ryed" person (my top 5 list has 3 ryed and 2 wheated bourbons), I just now thinl there is a definate place for wheated bourbons and I am glad that we have both varieties to try.

So know the distilleries have to get cracking on a mashbill with both! http://www.straightbourbon.com/ubbthreads/images/icons/grin.gif

Tom (yay Jeff!) C