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View Full Version : Jefferson 18 vs 17 year



rutterb
07-12-2012, 10:46
Is there a big difference between the two? I've passed on each the last couple days, but they still intrest me, mainly the s-w factor.

soonami
07-12-2012, 11:43
The general thought is that 18 is just 17 with an extra year on wood since the 18 came a year after the 17 and all subsequent batches are 18. They have different batch numbers, but people aren't sure if batch corresponds to any barrels and if the bourbon is just vatted in stainless tanks and then slowly released in bottles, a batch at a time so as to not flood the market. Also, the wording of the label is somewhat weird like, "age in SW barrels" or something like that so conspiracy theorists claim that make it's not SW distillate. Regardless, point is that there isn't a lot of info out there about these bourbons, and many find the quality to be variable.

White Dog
07-12-2012, 11:53
The barrels being used are variable, as they always are, but it is DSP-KY-16 to the best of my knowledge, which includes asking Trey Zoeller point blank at Whiskey Fest 2011 Chicago. I like the 17yr, as it's about $25 less in my parts, when you can still find it, and I can.:grin:

I do like this Whiskey, and yeah, it is a piece of history, if you're into that type of thing.

soonami
07-12-2012, 13:00
I just wanted to clarify that batch and bottling quality varies, although all the bourbon is distilled at SW.

In South Jersey, I've seen 17yo for around $75, 18yo is around $85

Question, as desirable as SW juice is how did Jefferson get ahold of some? Was this bourbon deemed inferior by BT/VW and thus sold? Or was this stuff that was lost and then found later during one of the several mergers?

AaronWF
07-12-2012, 13:43
Question, as desirable as SW juice is how did Jefferson get ahold of some? Was this bourbon deemed inferior by BT/VW and thus sold? Or was this stuff that was lost and then found later during one of the several mergers?

There's a lot of discussion of the origins of this juice on the forum, look around and you'll find answers to your questions and more, much more.

Bmac
07-12-2012, 19:01
Honestly I have scoured the website and I did not find the answers to my JPS questions.

I too would really.like to know the differences. I am confused because some releases are cask strength, some have hand written statistics, and then there is the printed versions.

I mean, why bother with batch numbers and bottle numbers when we don't know the final amount?

The only fact is that was agreed upon was that it was SW distallate for sure.

Where is Chuck and Stu with their investigative prowess? If there is anyone who could shed some light it is they.

MacinJosh
07-16-2012, 10:02
The only fact is that was agreed upon was that it was SW distallate for sure.

Actually, someone please correct me if I'm wrong, but I'm not sure we know for a fact it's SW "juice". The label states "Aged in Stitzel-Weller barrels."

So what exactly does that mean? Who knows.....

But I do know most batches are pretty damn tasty, and that's all I care about. :)

StraightNoChaser
07-16-2012, 10:43
My understanding is that the JPS is Bernheim wheated bourbon aged in S-W cooperage

MyOldKyDram
07-16-2012, 14:47
I thought they claimed that it was indeed S-W juice. The wording does certainly gives one pause though. In the end no one really knows.

redbear
07-16-2012, 15:12
The old threads on this subject indicate that Bernheim was not yet distilling when this whiskey was put into barrels.

smokinjoe
07-16-2012, 15:40
Same here, WD. I emailed Trey Zoeller in September 2009, soon after the JPS 17 had debuted, and asked him "point blank" regarding it's provenance. His response: "That is correct, they (sic) bourbon was distilled in November and December of 1991 at Stitzel-Weller. I hope you get a chance to enjoy a bottle."

Now, that's the 17. I haven't followed much on the 18.

MyOldKyDram
07-16-2012, 15:46
The 18 was distilled in 91, also. I'm assuming it simply spent another year in the barrel.

Trey Manthey
07-16-2012, 17:35
My understanding is that the JPS is Bernheim wheated bourbon aged in S-W cooperage

I've heard this explanation before, but it doesn't make sense. Why would they take Bernheim whiskey and then send it to SW to be barreled and aged? Warehouses full?

My understanding is: SW distillate, stored at SW rickhouse until they were shuttered, then purchased and moved elsewhere to finish the aging.

Restaurant man
07-16-2012, 18:53
To me it tastes exactly like the stitzel profile

White Dog
07-16-2012, 19:28
To me it tastes exactly like the stitzel profile

Me too. It seems to me that Trey just used stupid wording on his label. And I don't know about you, SmokingJoe, but when I spoke to him he seemed to be speaking the truth, and I'm told I have a high B.S. meter.

Bmac
07-16-2012, 19:43
I see through the wording. They aren't SW so they can't say "Yeah, this is SW juice.". They can say they are barrels of SW juice. I think it's a way of revealing the province without having to pay royalties.

Besides, SW aged their barrels for a year before toasting/charring. They produced some of the most coveted barrels in bourbondom.

redbear
07-16-2012, 20:19
Here is the thread. This has already been discussed to death. http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/showthread.php?14552-Jefferson-s-Reserve-Presidential-18/page3

Bmac
07-17-2012, 06:01
Here is the thread. This has already been discussed to death. http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/showthread.php?14552-Jefferson-s-Reserve-Presidential-18/page3
Yeah. It's SW juice. It may not be as rich as PVW15 SW but it is DAMN fine stuff! I have to agree the flavor profile is SW. I have Bernheim wheted 17 yr and it tastes NOTHING like JPS18.

Brisko
07-17-2012, 06:34
How much would you guys pay for the 17? I saw one for just under $100 recently and figured that might be too much, based on what I remember from the other thread on the subject.

soonami
07-17-2012, 07:36
I think I paid around $75 for it after taxes in NJ. I've seen in the 18 go for $85-90 in the area

clingman71
07-17-2012, 08:26
To me it tastes exactly like the stitzel profile

I agree. I have a '71 Weller 107 and a PVW 20 that share more similarity with JPS than my CnB Weller 12 - Bernheim or Vintage 17, which.I assume to be Bernheim.

Bmac
07-17-2012, 15:04
I think I paid around $75 for it after taxes in NJ. I've seen in the 18 go for $85-90 in the area
The only store in the Dallas TX area known to sell this has it for 89 if you pay in cash, or 95 otherwise.

StraightNoChaser
07-25-2012, 15:51
The only store in the Dallas TX area known to sell this has it for 89 if you pay in cash, or 95 otherwise.

I think it's like $75 at Total Wine... Might call them to be sure. My friend almost got one but I directed him to the 4R 2011 LE SmB next door at Spec's and he was elated with the result

Bmac
07-26-2012, 12:52
I think it's like $75 at Total Wine... Might call them to be sure. My friend almost got one but I directed him to the 4R 2011 LE SmB next door at Spec's and he was elated with the result

is Total Wine next to the Spec's in Dallas?

cowdery
07-26-2012, 13:04
First, I can't believe we're talking about the origin of Jefferson's again.

Second, use your heads. What is 'Stitzel-Weller Cooperage?' Stitzel-Weller isn't a cooperage, it doesn't and didn't make barrels, so what is SW cooperage? Is it a barrel that was used to age Stitzel-Weller whiskey? Maybe, but you couldn't use that to age bourbon, because it would be a used barrel, so it can't mean that. "Stitzel-Weller cooperage filled with Bernheim whiskey" is an impossibility since the words 'Stitzel-Weller cooperage' are meaningless. There is no such thing.

I myself have thrown it up as a joke but I don't think I'm going to do that anymore, always too many newbies around. Why confuse them unnecessarily?

It was a stupid choice of words on Jefferson's part, but that's it. We know Jefferson's is wheated bourbon made at Stitzel-Weller.

Bmac
07-26-2012, 13:10
It was a stupid choice of words on Jefferson's part, but that's it. We know Jefferson's is wheated bourbon made at Stitzel-Weller.
I quite agree. I am sure there's a story behind why 'Aged in Stitzel-Weller barrels' was used. Honesty, I still think it was done because there were complications using "Stitzel-Weller whiskey." Maybe the original request to COLA was denied for that reason. Based on the way the Jefferson's salesman are pushing the whiskey, they are targeting enthusiast who seek out SW. What I was told is that stores should be saying to customers "if you can't get pappy, get this, it's the same juice." Therefore, they clearly wanted the province known for that reason.

Tico
07-26-2012, 15:39
First, I can't believe we're talking about the origin of Jefferson's again.

Second, use your heads. What is 'Stitzel-Weller Cooperage?' Stitzel-Weller isn't a cooperage, it doesn't and didn't make barrels, so what is SW cooperage? Is it a barrel that was used to age Stitzel-Weller whiskey? Maybe, but you couldn't use that to age bourbon, because it would be a used barrel, so it can't mean that. "Stitzel-Weller cooperage filled with Bernheim whiskey" is an impossibility since the words 'Stitzel-Weller cooperage' are meaningless. There is no such thing.

I myself have thrown it up as a joke but I don't think I'm going to do that anymore, always too many newbies around. Why confuse them unnecessarily?

It was a stupid choice of words on Jefferson's part, but that's it. We know Jefferson's is wheated bourbon made at Stitzel-Weller.

According to Sally VW Campbell in "but always fine bourbon"

"Stitzel Weller barrels were more costly than others because they were thicker"

"Upon stepping into the little cooper shop"

Geroge Durkalski ran the cooperage at SW, there is a pic of him in the book circa 1959. (pages 152-153)

Im not disagreeing with you, I think the JPS stuff is SW but SW did have a cooperage shop at one point, not sure if it was still active when the JPS was distiller and barreled in 1991.

Bmac
07-26-2012, 20:41
Here is the picture mentioned above

13957
Just an observation but arent those used barrels? They are dismantling, not creating.

Tico
07-27-2012, 07:01
[QUOTE=Bmac;296678]Just an observation but arent those used barrels? They are dismantling, not creating.[/]

Probably on their way to Scotland, used barrels are broken down then arranged on a pallate.

cowdery
07-27-2012, 12:29
Cooper shops at distilleries were mostly for making repairs and for knocking down barrels for shipment to Scotland. Even in 1959, a small all-hand cooper shop like that could not possibly have supplied enough new barrels for a distillery the size of Stitzel-Weller. Even so, that shop was a distant memory by the time the whiskey for Jefferson's was made. I'm saying that from personal knowledge, as I was there during SW's last days.

I stand corrected for saying SW didn't have a cooperage, because a repair shop like that is considered a cooperage, but it doesn't really change the point. For purposes of the Jefferson's bottling, that statement can't be parsed for its 'true' meaning because it doesn't have one. It is meaningless nonsense, like most label copy.

As for Sally's statement, every distillery gives barrel specifications to its cooperage. That was not the meaning intended by the Jefferson's label writers.

I am sure there is not a story behind why 'Aged in Stitzel-Weller barrels' was used. It certainly had nothing to do with label approval, as that's not something TTB would care about.

The copywriter simply didn't understand what he was writing about. Speaking as a copywriter, I can assure you that happens a lot.

cowdery
07-27-2012, 17:03
This talk about old-time cooperages inspired a blog post (http://chuckcowdery.blogspot.com/2012/07/when-visiting-kentucky-dont-miss.html).

Now 20 years old, my "Made and Bottled in Kentucky" has become an historical artifact in its own right. I don't know if Walter Doerting (in the excerpt on the blog) has passed, but I assume he has. Other interview subjects in the video who are no longer with us include Sam Cecil, Booker Noe, and Owsley Brown.

luther.r
07-27-2012, 19:38
Chuck, do you know any specifics of S-W's barrels? Which cooperage was making them, what char, etc.?

cowdery
07-30-2012, 13:56
I don't know. I know there were a few more cooperages then. Brown-Forman's would have been convenient, but there were others in the area. The building that houses Kelvin Cooperage, on Outer Loop Road, was built as a cooperage and that would have been convenient to them too. Sally Van Winkle Campbell says they were thicker than other barrels. I don't know about that.