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View Full Version : Did Sazerac ever have an age statement?



Josh
01-17-2012, 12:12
Did Sazerac Rye, aka Baby Saz, Saz Jr., Sazito, ever carry an age statement?

I can't remember ever seeing a photo of an age-stated Sazerac or a seeing one in the flesh, as it were, but something in my brain tells me it was once 6 y/o. Brisko, I believe, stated that he thought Saz had once been an AS product.

Another piece of fuzzy evidence is that it is listed in the Michigan Price Book as SAZERAC RYE-6 YR

Any dusty enthusiasts out there know anything else about this? Anyone have any old bottles of Saz in the bunker they can photograph and post?

Brisko
01-17-2012, 12:31
Thanks for starting a new thread, Josh. You are correct, I was under the impression that it was a 6 y/o. But I have absolutely no proof of that.

John Hansell's review listed it as a 6 y/o, too.

And, I have a spreadsheet with notes on pretty much every brown spirit I've purchased, and I listed it as a 6 y/o. Whether that was from the label or by the power of suggestion, I don't know.

I searched greatbourbon.com on the "Wayback Machine" (webarchive.org) and it looks like Baby Saz got added to the website late in 2006. The image there didn't have any age statement visible, so if it was there, it would have had to been on the back of the label, or maybe on a neck tag?

Anyway, where'd we get the idea that it was 6 y/o? Did Sazerac push this in the early marketing or was it actually on the label/

BigRich
01-17-2012, 12:32
Josh, I don't have any hard evidence for you but I recall it being 6 years old too.

cowdery
01-17-2012, 12:43
Everyone has always said it's 6-years-old but I don't believe that has ever been on the label.

DeanSheen
01-17-2012, 15:05
Ohio has it listed a 6 YR as well on their site.

8726B
SAZERAC RYE 6

nblair
01-17-2012, 15:11
I don't recall there ever being an age statement on the label.

There is a first production run bottle on eBay. I do not see it in the photos there either.

Old Lamplighter
01-17-2012, 16:37
No actual proof or link to it, but, I seem to hazily recall that BT introduced it to the market as a 6yo rye. Now that we seem to be accelerating faster & further into the NAS world, it does not sound sensible that BT would make such statement. Maybe someone else can track this down in the past.

cowdery
01-17-2012, 18:17
BT has always been good about telling us how old something is and I believe that's what happened with Baby Saz, especially since it followed the success of Saz 18. I don't believe it ever said six years on the bottle.

Brisko
01-17-2012, 19:27
BT has always been good about telling us how old something is and I believe that's what happened with Baby Saz, especially since it followed the success of Saz 18. I don't believe it ever said six years on the bottle.

I know you've commented many time that you tend not to believe what producers claim about the ages of NAS products; do you find BT to be more credible than some?

SDpappy
01-18-2012, 00:22
Isn't Handy also a 6 year old Rye from Buffalo Trace? Is baby Saz a diluted verson of Handy or is it completely different recipes?

Josh
01-18-2012, 04:46
Isn't Handy also a 6 year old Rye from Buffalo Trace? Is baby Saz a diluted verson of Handy or is it completely different recipes?

Handy's age varies from year to year. Usually it's 6-8 y/o IIRC. It's the same recipe.

cowdery
01-18-2012, 15:27
I know you've commented many time that you tend not to believe what producers claim about the ages of NAS products; do you find BT to be more credible than some?

It's not that I don't believe them, it's just that there are different penalties for lying to me (nothing) and lying to the federal government (hefty fines, possible loss of license), so I take that into consideration. Also, they may tell me something that's true when they say it, but when the answer changes they feel no obligation to inform me of the change.

In fact, from my experience the major producers rarely lie, though at times they do mislead and they certainly obfuscate.

As for Handy, BT makes a lot of the fact that it has, in its various domains, many different aging environments, which produce different whiskeys. Handy may be the same recipe as Baby Saz and even similarly aged, but barrels are selected according to a particular profile that may and probably does differ from Baby Saz. Handy, just based on my experience, probably comes from the hotter and higher parts of the warehouses, which produce more intense flavors.

timd
01-18-2012, 17:36
I never recall seeing it labeled on the official releases, but for a number of years there were specialty bottlings that did have exact ages on them - usually between 7-8 years for these single barrel offerings.

According to folks at TPS & Binny's, Sazerac no longer offers an SB program for Baby Saz because of its scarcity. But I had an ~8 year from TPS that was stunning. Wish I'd bought more!

With Handy, we always know the exact age, because of the nice detailed fact sheets with the cases, and I do recall them clearly SAYING that Baby Saz was ~6 when I visited the distillery a few years back, and I vaguely remember seeing that age on their website, too, a while back, but never recall seeing it on the label of the bottle.

I'm 100% sure that Handy & Baby Saz are identical mashbills, but as Chuck notes, the aging, barrel location, etc. clearly play as big a part in that relationship as it does between Weller & Old Rip/Pappy selections.

fussychicken
01-26-2012, 19:20
Handy, just based on my experience, probably comes from the hotter and higher parts of the warehouses, which produce more intense flavors.

BTAC Analysis:
http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/showthread.php?t=15400

It seems like early Handys came from middle and upper floors, but in the last couple of years have been coming from lower floors. They all seem to fit the standard angles share evaporation profile too which suggests lower floors as well.

In either case, I still like it!