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View Full Version : Four Roses Small Batch vs Single Barrel



Brisko
01-06-2012, 08:16
I'm referring to the standard issue for both of these. What is the current wisdom on these? Does one win out over the other or do they stand alone on their own merits? I've seen a few posts around lately suggesting that they like the SmB a little better than the 1B, where as older posts seemed to trend the opposite direction.

For the record, I haven't had either. I intend to rectify that soon.

AaronWF
01-06-2012, 08:58
I'm referring to the standard issue for both of these. What is the current wisdom on these? Does one win out over the other or do they stand alone on their own merits? I've seen a few posts around lately suggesting that they like the SmB a little better than the 1B, where as older posts seemed to trend the opposite direction.

For the record, I haven't had either. I intend to rectify that soon.

I feel that the SmB lacks a sweetness that would balance out its more citrus-rindy flavors. If I recall, the finish left me unsatisfied. I vatted my last bottle with a Binny's 1B OBSF, and enjoyed it much more that way.

I really like the standard 1B. It's more balanced, if perhaps less complex than the SmB. It has a cool, refreshing note that isn't quite minty but is very pleasing to me, and it has the perfect amount of weighty sweetness for my palate.

bad_scientist
01-06-2012, 09:31
I vatted my last bottle with a Binny's 1B OBSF

How was the Binny's OBSF on its own? I have a TPS OBSK that I love, but I want something with even more rye/mint. I've read that the OBSF recipe can be pretty minty.

AaronWF
01-06-2012, 09:47
Of the Binny's 1B I've had (OBSQ, OBSF, OBSK, OESQ), I think the OBSF is my least favorite. It was in the 126pr range, and a bit hot with a thinner finish. I don't recall it being particularly minty. I'm curious as to how their OBSV compares to the standard 1B, but I have yet to taste Binny's OBSV.

My favorite so far is the OBSQ. Not sure about the mint, but it has an exotic, medicinal astringency balanced with a delicious caramel sweetness that blew me away.

StraightNoChaser
01-06-2012, 09:47
I'm a whore for the 1B, definitely a staple in my glass. I like the SmB as well but it lacks the intensity that I love in 1B

Young Blacksmith
01-06-2012, 09:51
I'm on the 1B side too. Love that stuff!

Small Batch to me is just like Bulleit, so pick the cheaper. I like it too, just not as much.

STLbourbon
01-06-2012, 11:52
Single Barrel lover here. Small batch is ok, but I never buy it given the other choices at that price point.

STLb

cowdery
01-06-2012, 13:47
I prefer 1B, but they're supposed to be different. 1B is like a perfect nectar while SmB is more challenging, hence more complex. Definitely more spice and astringency in the SmB.

Brisko
01-06-2012, 13:57
Thanks, everyone. I was leaning toward the 1B and I think that it sounds like just the ticket this weekend. SmB sounds pretty interesting, too. Maybe next time.

Phil T
01-06-2012, 14:12
1B is like a perfect nectar while SmB is more challenging, hence more complex. Definitely more spice and astringency in the SmB.

Very good points of comparison.

If you really want to branch out, try the LE SmB's or the SB's..or try the various private barrels of all 10 recipes, most times, just a computer click away.

luther.r
01-06-2012, 14:23
or try the various private barrels of all 10 recipes, most times, just a computer click away.

+1

I picked up a 1B at the gift shop a couple months ago and thought it was just so-so. Based on recommendations here, I got an OESO from Binny's last week and was very impressed. It's much better than the regular 1B.

nivto
01-06-2012, 14:30
i don't drink it often, but i think the small batch is one that falls into that dangerously drinkable territory. it's one that i find to be very easy drinking, but at the same time still has a lot going on in it... i think some people might even argue there is too much going on with all those different recipes

i love the sb. that's my go to off the shelf pour. a good barrel of the sb is really terrific bourbon, and i've found that there are more good ones then there are so-so ones.

cask strength sb's are fun too... obsk, obsv, oeso are three of my favorites, but i've found it's hard to go wrong with any obsk selection.

fishnbowljoe
01-06-2012, 14:34
I prefer 1B, but they're supposed to be different. 1B is like a perfect nectar while SmB is more challenging, hence more complex. Definitely more spice and astringency in the SmB.

What he said. I also actually like FR Yellow better than SmB.

ebo
01-06-2012, 16:26
FRSB is one of my favorites. I like the Small Batch, but I have to give the nod to the 1B if I have to pick between the two.

ebo
01-06-2012, 16:31
What he said. I also actually like FR Yellow better than SmB.
It must just be me.... I just can't drink the Yellow Label. I've tried to like it on several ocassions... not happening. I find it to be so boring...... bland and so...... nothing, compared to 1B and SmB. I finally gave the rest of it to my brother to mix with Coke.

sob0728
01-06-2012, 20:04
Thanks, everyone. I was leaning toward the 1B and I think that it sounds like just the ticket this weekend. SmB sounds pretty interesting, too. Maybe next time.

Don't know if you bought your 1B yet, but they have it on sale for $34.99 on my side of the city. PM me if you want to know where.

bgageus
01-06-2012, 20:19
Im more of a SmB person. I drink both, and like both. The SB I think is better with a little water, I also enjoy unfiltered and uncut, but I need to cut them to where I think they are best. One thing about the SmB that really impresses me is that I think it is the best bourbon I have had out of the bottle. I think Jim found the swet spot with the proof of the SmB. If I was in a desert and had no water, I would drink 4R SmB.

Aside: I have been pondering ordering TPS 1Bs, what is the difference between their bottle and LE's. Is it the age of the LE? Are there ages on TPS?

T Comp
01-06-2012, 20:56
It must just be me.... I just can't drink the Yellow Label. I've tried to like it on several ocassions... not happening. I find it to be so boring...... bland and so...... nothing, compared to 1B and SmB. I finally gave the rest of it to my brother to mix with Coke.

Not just you...and I've tried too...though I've made peace when it is joined by sweet vermouth and bitters.

BFerguson
01-07-2012, 04:06
1B is by far the winner in my book. i haven't picked one up in some time, but the last one that i had, Chuck nailed it with the nectar description. It was a really good bottle.

And a great deal at $34

There just have been too many others that have got in the way of it recently. Its one that I do need to revisit.

B

Phil T
01-07-2012, 04:46
Aside: I have been pondering ordering TPS 1Bs, what is the difference between their bottle and LE's. Is it the age of the LE? Are there ages on TPS?

The LE's, both SB and SmB, seem to come from older Four Roses stock. Of the ones I've enjoyed, the stated ages used ranged from 10 to 19 years old.

The private SB's I have had ( TPS, Kahn's, Binny's ), have all been 8-10 yrs old, cask strength, non chill filtered

jburlowski
01-07-2012, 05:21
My vote is for the SmB. I love the FRSB and pretty much everything that Jim Rutledge produces ---- especially the selected SB at barrel proof. But the SmB (and I would include the Mariages and SmB LEs) gives a complexity and taste experience that simply can't be found in any other bourbon.

Old Lamplighter
01-07-2012, 11:21
My favorite so far is the OBSQ. Not sure about the mint, but it has an exotic, medicinal astringency balanced with a delicious caramel sweetness that blew me away.

I was fortunate enough over the holidays to be able to get a few TPS 1Bs. So far, the OBSQ is my least favorite. Don't get me wrong, I like them all...just this one the least. Can't put a finger on it but your description starts to put into words this bottle for me. Maybe it just needs some air for a while..don't know. But, it is definitely different from the rest and any other 4R1B I've had past & present. Further, the "exoticness" of it has turned me away from spending even more dollars on the 2011 LE 1B which is also OBSQ, just a couple of yrs older.

I want try the OBSK next as well as more OESO & some OESF.

Brisko
01-08-2012, 15:23
Don't know if you bought your 1B yet, but they have it on sale for $34.99 on my side of the city. PM me if you want to know where.

Funny story. I walked in to buy 4 Roses and I left with a PHC wheater instead.
But I think I'll probably grab both 4Rs next time.