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BourbonJoe
05-30-2005, 08:41
For years I bought 90 proof Evan Williams Black Label as my go-to bourbon. I noticed some time ago that EW lowered the proof to 86. Does anyone know why? If it was a matter of economics, they should have just raised the price. I think all bourbon is better at 90 proof than 86. How do you all feel? I have since moved on to Ezra Brooks. http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/smil41df29a15fb35.gif

TNbourbon
05-30-2005, 08:50
If they just raised the price, you'd notice. If they lower the proof, you might not, but it still amounts to a price increase because there's more water in the bottle for the same price.
Many have done it:
Jack Daniel's from 90 to 86 to 80; Evan Williams from 90 to 86; Jim Beam Black from 90 to 86; now/soon, Wild Turkey Russell's Reserve from 101 to 90; Jim Beam versions of Old Taylor, Old Crow and Old Grand-dad 86 to 80.
Obviously, it's a pretty highly-regarded 'marketing' concept.

bulldawg
05-30-2005, 09:18
Economics. I agree with you in that I'd rather pay a little more. It's worth it to retain the integrity of the whiskey. Apparently, bean counters would rather compromise good whiskey than cut costs elsewhere. You've probably noticed that over the past couple of years Evan Williams has dramatically increased their ads in magazines. Guess they had to give up some proof to pay those bills. Use to be a regular staple with me as well. Now I've found replacements.

BobA
05-30-2005, 10:36
Is Beam actually doing this? My bottle shows 86, but it is maybe 6 months old. I keep it around for comparing to other stuff, but regularly have the 100 and 114 around.

I'll have to look the next time I'm in a store. Too bad. Especially when comparing the BIB and 114 to Beam's other proofs and prices, I thought the OGD line showed a good commitment on JB's part to the history of the product. Should have known better; I guess if the demand were there for the 114, they'd price it between Baker's and Booker's. Actually, I'm a little surprised they haven't tried to create that through marketing. Maybe we should be happy that Basil Hayden was sent out as it was and possibly forestalled any attempt to move OGD 114 up the price ladder.

Bob

Barrel_Proof
05-30-2005, 15:42
Don't worry -- OGD's standard issue today is an 86.

In years past, however, OGD could be found as an 80. I have an OGD 80 from KY-14 in a 1992 bottle that I found in a hole in the wall shop on St. Maarten. I'm still kicking myself for not buying more.

TNbourbon
05-30-2005, 17:20
Oops! http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/blush.gif Like Cliff, I have seen the older 80-proof bottlings. Guess you could say I was "grandfathering" (or would that be "Grand-dading"?) that data to the present. http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/spin_icon.gif

ej178
05-30-2005, 20:44
Here in California a 1.75 bottle of EW Black goes for 12 bucks on sale. I'm suprised it is not 80 proof.

BobA
05-31-2005, 13:41
Well good. I take back all the negatives I wrote above, reserving the right to call them back up if Beam ever does get that into their heads. I may well have had some of the 80 proof years ago; I know OGD was in the rotation of some friends of friends in the early 80's. But all that sticks out in my mind from then in the OGD line is the 114. I do keep my eyes peeled for older stuff, though.

Bob

Sweetmeats
11-18-2005, 09:36
I enjoy the Single Barrel and noticed that the Black Label was on sale lately. How does the quality compare?

chasking
11-18-2005, 12:19
I enjoy the Single Barrel and noticed that the Black Label was on sale lately. How does the quality compare?



It doesn't. I don't often have occasion to use this particular graemlin, but: http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/puke.gif

(flame suit on)

I enjoy EWSB too, but there is a universe of difference between the single barrel and the bottom-shelf black label expression. It's aimed at people who think they're being ripped off if they have to pay ten whole dollars for a bottle of bourbon. At that level, I suppose it's about what you'd expect.

Joe_Blowe
11-18-2005, 12:23
I enjoy the Single Barrel and noticed that the Black Label was on sale lately. How does the quality compare?

Evan Williams Black Label happens to be a regular pour around here -- it's really the only one that I drink ice. I've had enough of it at this point where I might feel qualified to write some "tasting notes," but I'll save that for a later date.*

The last bottle of EWSB I had was a '95. I don't think you can really compare it to EW Black Label, but I will say that you can taste "hints" of each other (mint, metal, more dry than sweet, more rye than wheat) when tasted side-by-side. The EWSB is obviously the more refined product, but a half-gallon of Black Label is much easier on the wallet!


* I've been meaning to do a comparison between the last of my EWBL 7 year old, and the EWBL NAS (no age statement) which is now just hitting the shelves in SoCal. I've had just the tiniest sip (straight, in a wine glass) of the NAS at a friends house, but can't make a call on it. First impression was that it's the about the same...

Sweetmeats
11-18-2005, 12:31
I've been meaning to do a comparison between the last of my EWBL 7 year old, and the EWBL NAS (no age statement) which is now just hitting the shelves in SoCal. I've had just the tiniest sip (straight, in a wine glass) of the NAS at a friends house, but can't make a call on it. First impression was that it's the about the same...



I noticed both bottles on the shelf at Ralphs. So the no age statement is the more recent? Is it still 7 years?

BourbonJoe
11-19-2005, 03:57
I noticed both bottles on the shelf at Ralphs. So the no age statement is the more recent? Is it still 7 years?



NO
Joe http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/usflag.gif

boone
11-19-2005, 09:18
Quote:
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------


I noticed both bottles on the shelf at Ralphs. So the no age statement is the more recent? Is it still 7 years?


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------



NO
Joe



Oh Really...

Soooooooooo...what's in there?

Bettye Jo

BourbonJoe
11-19-2005, 13:08
Oh Really...

Soooooooooo...what's in there?

Bettye Jo



Bettye Jo,
According to your humble HH represenative at the Philadelphia Whiskey Fest, it is mostly now 5 year old product with a little bit of 7 year thrown in. He said HH did not wish to change the label to read "5 years old". He said HH needed the older whiskey for other bottlings.
Joe http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/usflag.gif

boone
11-19-2005, 13:24
On the papers...A notation for the lines (about three weeks ago).

QUOTE:

All EW Black, use 7 year product, per Max.

Bettye Jo

BourbonJoe
11-19-2005, 15:24
Bettye Jo,
I don't think the "dumpers" are following Max's orders. According to your very own marketing people, the age statement was removed because, by LAW, the youngest whiskey allowed in that bottle must be 7 years old and that is no longer the case. What a pity. http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/banghead.gif First, a reduction from 90 to 86 proof and now using younger whiskey. http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/hot.gif

musher
11-19-2005, 17:03
Bettye Jo,
I don't think the "dumpers" are following Max's orders. According to your very own marketing people, the age statement was removed because, by LAW, the youngest whiskey allowed in that bottle must be 7 years old and that is no longer the case. What a pity.



I'd take Max's word over anyone in marketing in a heartbeat.

BourbonJoe
11-20-2005, 02:27
I'd take Max's word over anyone in marketing in a heartbeat.


Well then maybe Max can explain why the age statement was taken off the bottle. http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/confused.gif
Joe http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/usflag.gif

TNbourbon
11-20-2005, 08:38
...Well then maybe Max can explain why the age statement was taken off the bottle. http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/confused.gif
Joe http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/usflag.gif



It's no secret that Heaven Hill is going to have a crunch of certain-aged whiskeys at certain periods of time following the November 1996 fire. For example, I wonder what will become of the Evan Williams Single Barrel after the 1996 issue. There is no 1997 or 1998 Heaven Hill distillate except what was made under contract from then-UDV Bernheim (HH didn't purchase it until 1999).
I suspect that's what's happening now with the EW 7yo. With younger whiskey in the bottle, the label had to be changed. But it doesn't have to change again to put older whiskey back in the bottle. Max and the Heaven Hill folks have been eminently fair with consumers until now regarding both quality and price, and if he indicates that 7yo bourbon is/will be back in the bottle, I figure it's true.

barturtle
11-20-2005, 09:14
It may just be the case that they took the age statement off a number of bottlings(they have) as a way to prepare for whatever eventually comes to be as stock levels come back on again.

Not being able to gaze into a crystal ball and see what orders are coming in(I believe they bottle to order, i.e. orders come in, and they bottle when they have enough to cover a batch, but Bettye Jo would know for sure) as they deal with this for the next couple years, means that if one label were to start selling better than expected, they just might have to put in some younger whiskey than they normally would. Label applications take time and going ahead and changing them ensures that they won't have to wait for that to be approved so they can ship.

I, too had not considered what would happen to EWSB. It will be a nice way to see exactly how close they are coming to the flavor profile they tend towards for this bottling. Assuming they are still able to produce it during the switch over, from Bardstown made to contract distilled to their new (to them, though it was still pretty new when they bought it) distillery.

The stories say that Bernheim was pretty much computer controlled when they bought it and they went though and put many of those operations back into the hands of (wo)men, will be nice to find out how much of a change came from the same still with different owners.

musher
11-20-2005, 18:07
Well then maybe Max can explain why the age statement was taken off the bottle.



Be sure and let us know what he tells you.

mbanu
11-21-2005, 09:03
It's no secret that Heaven Hill is going to have a crunch of certain-aged whiskeys at certain periods of time following the November 1996 fire. For example, I wonder what will become of the Evan Williams Single Barrel after the 1996 issue. There is no 1997 or 1998 Heaven Hill distillate except what was made under contract from then-UDV Bernheim (HH didn't purchase it until 1999).



This also makes me wonder about Evan Williams 1783, which I'd always assumed was a byproduct of Evan Williams Single Barrel manufacture...