View Full Version : Thedford Reserve- Mystery Solved??

02-26-2001, 11:08
The Boston Bourbon Boys, Al and Larry, have taken the challenge of determining the source of the mysterious Thedford Reserve "Colonial Style Bourbon". This comes packaged with 2 bottles and a fancy wooden cask. Retail price is about $300, though up here iln Boston we can get it for about $150.
Based on our extensive research, we have concluded that it is probably made by Brown/Forman and it may be Early Times Borbon, not available as such in the USA. Here is a summation of our evidence: The verbiage used to advertise both ET and TR is similar in many cases - both reference early colonists, limestone water, smooth and mellow taste, (as do most others bourbons). The round seal is remarkably similar, both have "point proofs" 90.4 ET vs. 92.6 TR. Thedford references no age statement, Early Times tells us in its website, that age does not matter as much as "maturity". The force age their whiskey several cycles per year in climate controlled warehouses, whereas non-climate controlled warehouses only undergo one cycle per year.

In our taste tests we compared TR against several Early Times bottlings. Kentucky Whiskey 80*-3 yrs 1985, Kent. Whisk, 80* 3 yrs 1997, ET straight boubron 3 yrs 80*, ET straight bourbon 4 yrs 80*. Then we tasted Old Forester BIB 6 yrs 100 1973 & 1979 and several other Old Foressters. We felt all bottles were from the same family and were similar.

Both are from Louisville KY. That was our biggest clue. Not a lot of distileries in the neighborhood.

We know Early Times bourbon is made for export only and cannot be sold domestically under that label but maybe there is a loophole that lets Brown Forman sell it under someone elses label and maybe that label is Thedford Reserve.

I'd be interested in John Lipman's response particularly.

02-26-2001, 13:15
Giobo said:
I'd be interested in John Lipman's response particularly.

Yo John...it's OK...tell him and he can have my prize...really...that's just the kindof person I am...:o)

Blowin' smoke in Bardstown

02-27-2001, 06:07
Says BrendaJ, "Yo John...it's OK...tell him and he can have my prize...really...that's just the kind of person I am..."

Joe actually was the first with the answer to the original question. This post goes beyond that to speculate on which distillery actually MAKES the bourbon sold as Thedford Reserve. But your kind offer has been duly noted, and so impressed were Linda & I at your benevolence that we've decided to double your prize instead! I'm sure you'll be delighted.

Joe: Linda and I spent a very pleasant afternoon with Jim Razzino at his home just outside of Louisville last Wednesday. I'll be putting together a page on McKendric/Thedford on our Tour-The-Distilleries website and going into a little more detail there, but Jim impressed us as a really nice guy trying to wrestle some very innovative ideas into a market that could certainly use them. I'll give you a better response offline, but for now I will say that your conclusions certainly seem well-researched. I'm interested in seeing what others might come up with.


02-27-2001, 08:38
Damn John, It's about time you showed back up, things were getting awfully quiet around here.
Bettye Jo tells me you paid her a visit. How'd it go?


Jim Butler

02-27-2001, 08:43
As Master Distiller for Brown-Forman Corp. I can assure you that Thedford Reserve is NOT Early Times Bourbon. However is a "play on" Woodford Reserve.

02-27-2001, 09:10
I replied to this earlier however I do not think my reply went through.
As Master Distiller for Brown-Forman I can assure you that Thedford Reserve is NOT a Brown-Forman product. Of course we are the proud producers of Woodford Reserve Distiller's Select at the Labrot&Graham Distillery in Woodford county Kentucky.

02-27-2001, 10:10
Welcome to the forum and thanks for the info. It's GREAT to have an expert join our group!!


02-27-2001, 17:08
Oh sure, Linda.
Let a suave, handsome Kentucky gentleman into the forum and just look who goes all eyelid-batty and flirtatious http://www.straightbourbon.com/wwwthreads/images/wink.gif
At least with Linn I didn't have anything to worry about!

Seriously, it's really an honor to have you join us, Lincoln.
I doubt that there's anyone here who isn't aware of who Brown-Forman's master distiller is, so I don't feel I'm betraying any secrets. Some of your greatest fans lurk and contribute here and any wisdom you can add will be highly appreciated. Be prepared, though, for a million questions.