View Full Version : Bernheim Straight Wheat Whiskey opinions?

09-23-2005, 08:41
Anyone have any experience with this whiskey yet?

09-23-2005, 09:02
The small taste I got at the Heaven Hill Visitors Center was light to medium body with lots of floral tones. Very interesting indeed, as it doesn't really resemble even a wheated bourbon. I liked it and I think Leslie proclaimed it one of the best whiskies she's ever tried.

09-23-2005, 12:10
I agree. Very pleasant, interesting taste.

Heaven Hill has hit a home run, except for the $39 a bottle tag. Novelty aside, this is pricey for a 5 y/o product.

I'd bet they kept a few of these barrels aging longer -- hopefully, we'll see a 7 or 10 yr old HH wheat in the future.


09-23-2005, 14:14
It's as easy-drinking a whiskey as I've had. Aged long enough to pick up some of the sweetness from the barrels' red layers, but not aged long enough to of the more 'woody' astringency. Like many wheated bourbons, it's not terribly complex without the barrel notes, but pleasantly tasty in its own right.

09-23-2005, 16:57
I really enjoyed the small amount I was priviledged to try but I don't know if any of the others had the same experience I did in nosing. There just wasn't very much there and I was really straining to find it. The taste however was quite pleasant and I am looking forward to getting a bottle to peruse over a longer period of time.

09-23-2005, 18:05
I had the same experience with the nose--it took awhile to really get a decent reaction. This would be a great whiskey to try with one of those nosing/watchglass cover things.

I was pleasantly surprised with the straight wheat. It didn't knock my socks off like the 20yo rye did, but it definitely piqued my interest into buying a bottle or two if it ever hits the shelves around here. I didn't find it very bourbonlike, but then again, when I think of wheated bourbons I think subtle, smooth, unaggressive which is exactly what this was.

09-24-2005, 09:08
Hi Jeff, Leslie is her name, sorry I called her Tracy...anyway I'm glad that you enjoyed the Bernheim SWW from HH.

09-25-2005, 15:44
I had an opportunity to try this last week at LeNell's. I found it to be very enjoyable, as did a number of my Scotch buddies. I'm glad to have been able to grab a bottle, which will give me a chance to more carefully check it out.


10-05-2005, 17:11
This showed up on the shelves of Liquor Barn today, priced at $37 and some change. I'm getting the same violet, floral notes on the nose as before, but I'm also getting what seems like a lot of corn too. There is a young "raw" quality that's got hints of white dog, but not really. It's very smooth with just a little tingle on the tongue. I think I can sense some similarities between this and say Maker's or younger Van Winkles, but it's really quite different. I like it a lot. Leslie gives it 2 thumbs up http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/lol.gif

11-03-2005, 22:31
It does have quite a bite on the finish, much more so than I ever expected from a straight wheat having based this assumption on wheated bourbons. There's a lot of kick to it even at 90 proof. It's not as sweet as I expected. I like it a lot, though.

11-04-2005, 10:17
I like this as well - though I agree that a bit more aging might make it a bit more interesting. I find it very pleasant, but not very complex.


11-04-2005, 11:20
Is there any info on this on Heaven Hill's website? I can't seem to find a thing.

11-04-2005, 17:36
I just picked up a bottle today (one of two on the shelf), and just opened it now. Very nice, even if it's a bit on the pricy side. I'd agree that it's not the most complex pour around, but it's very pleasant to drink. http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/yum.gif

I'd be interested to see if they squirrelled away some barrels for extra aging, too...

I'm following it up now with a wheated bourbon (Old Weller 7/107) for contrast. The Weller, aside from being darker, has a heavier body to it, and a bit more prickle on the tongue (probably the higher ABV). There's some similarity between the two, but the bourbon's higher corn content and extra aging are also apparent.

I must say, the Weller is fine stuff, too! http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/yum.gif

11-08-2005, 01:05
I picked up a bottle of this when I was in Cincinnati a couple of weeks ago. Man, I really like it! As others have said it's not the most complex bouquet, but the taste is really quite different from a wheated bourbon. I find it sweeter and lighter than Weller or Van Winkle. I agree it would be interesting to taste some that aged longer. But I heartily endorse this whiskey, and I hope it turns up on California shelves.

12-05-2005, 17:56
I tried this tonight. I have to say, I enjoyed it. It is on the sweeter lighter side, especially for 90 proof.

12-06-2005, 06:19
I like this... a lot! I find the taste light and an interesting change from my typical bourbon. Very drinkable. I hope they made more because I believe this will get better with a little more time in the barrel.

12-06-2005, 14:29
Bernheim Wheat is not a one-off, but is a product they intend to keep making. They have held some barrels back for additional aging, but there is no telling if or when they will be released.

12-06-2005, 17:23
I agree, I would like to try this aged.

12-12-2005, 16:10
I am half way through my first bottle, and I thoroughly enjoy it. Yeah, I'm not too keen on the $40.00 price tag, but, I think it may just be worth it. I don't think it was at all too sweet. Highly recommended.

12-13-2005, 18:37
A number of people have mentioned the price. I can tell you that Heaven Hill thought long and hard about that. They concluded that some of their past products (e.g., Elijah Craig 12-year-old, Evan Williams Single Barrel) probably have been underpriced and they wanted to see if this product could support a higher price point.

As a consumer, I like low prices, but as an enthusiast I recognize that the higher price point, if we pay it, encourages companies to take chances on other new, original products.

12-15-2005, 13:52
It may be able to support the higher price initially, but once us bourbon nuts have a bottle or two, will the mass-market continue to support the price?

It's like cars. Introduce a new model and people are willing to pay over sticker for the first couple months, then a year or two down the road, there are all kinds of rebates and incentives.

IMHO, this is about a $30-$35 product. I, like many others, are willing to pay $40 because it is the first of its kind, but I won't continue to buy it at $40 for very long. There are too many other great bourbons under $40, EWSB included.

But, ok, HH, raise EC 12 and/or EWSB $0.50 or $1 and I bet most people will continue to buy them. The volume of those products coupled with a modest price increase might just make up for a lower margin of Bernheim Original.

12-15-2005, 15:24
I know if it was available Downunder, I'd buy my first bottle no matter what the price.
If it was too expensive ($100+), I'd sit on the bottle and only pour a shot every now and then.
If it was priced somewhere between Evan Williams SB ($45) and Bookers ($90), I'd probably buy multiple bottles if I really liked the taste and consume it more frequently.
Unfortunately this is academic for me, because I doubt we'll see it in our market anytime soon http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/frown.gif

12-15-2005, 19:49
I enjoyed it, but it should be $29.99 at most.

12-17-2005, 13:09
I agree, I bought it because it was new and novel and, while I enjoy it, I am unlikely to continue buying it at ~$40.

12-17-2005, 13:16
I agree, mid-30s seems reasonable, while above $40 is pushing it.

I have to say, I really like this stuff "on the rocks", or with just one cube of ice, and not nearly as much neat. It tastes rather thin and uncomplex when neat, but over ice it's incredibly refreshing...I could see it as a great drink on a warm summer evening.

12-19-2005, 14:50
I opened a bottle of this and found it very drinkable. Soft and just sweet enough. I echo the sentiment of wanting to try this again if/when stocks of more advanced age are bottled. It's not available to me locally in Seattle so I doubt it will be a regular purchase, but it's good enough that I could happily pour it fairly often.

12-21-2005, 16:55
Well, now that everyone is stuck on price, I truly believe it's worth the $40.00.Maybe that's my scotch background coming through, where for a scotch of comparable value and quality would easily set you back $65-75.00. I like it a lot;
when I mentioned the price, it was because I can see myself buying it a lot, so $10.00 would be mighty fine. Oh, yeah. But for my wheatie fix, Weller Antique does an admirable job, at $25.00 (1 ltr). But I do enjoy the Bernheim.

12-21-2005, 21:37
I'd say that the Bernheim Straight Wheat is just worth it - but if the cost was any higher, I wouldn't buy it. I wouldn't mind seeing it for a few bucks less, though. http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/smile.gif

Then again, given the jumps in Scotch prices over the last year http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/banghead.gif (I haven't bought Lagavulin in over a year because of that), it isn't all that bad a price for a relatively limited-production item.

I'll agree on the Weller Antique, too - it's a great bang-for-the-buck pour when I want a wheater.

02-13-2006, 17:49
Bernheim is $39.99 every day here in Doo Dah. I like it. It is truely unique. I like to set it side by side with a rye, like Hirsch or Sazerac, just for contrast. But I've got to agree on the price. It's mighty difficult to pick this $40 bottle when it sits next to an Eagle Rare 17 or a Stagg for only a few dollars more, or even an Evan Williams Single Barrel for quite a few dollars less...

Neh, I like it. I think I'll have to keep some on the shelf.

Can't wait 'til the older stuff is released though. This could definately use another 5 years in the oak.