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kbuzbee
11-17-2005, 16:20
So there have been several discussions of favorites and long lists of these produced. A recent post turned that around and asked which high priced bourbons are not worth their asking price. I found that question interesting but most of the answers were to the affirmative eg - things that ARE worth their asking price.

But it brought up yet one more iteration.... If you could choose only one Bourbon (for a year, for 10 years, for life.....) Which would it be?? The Bourbon would cost what it does now but it would be available to you where you live in the quantity you require.

No restrictions other than you can only afford how much you can afford. You choose your criteria, flavor profile, cost, whatever. You may want: Lots of a cheaper pour. Less of a more expensive offering. Almost none of something very exotic. Lots of something exotic (and you're taking out a second mortgage http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/lol.gif)

Now I realize this is not the bent of most people on this forum. Most of us enjoy a wide range of offerings and have pours for certain weather, certain moods, certain food etc. etc. But if you could only have one! (and no trading with folks who choose something else http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/shocked.gif)

I choose Kentucky Spirit. Altough not cheap, I can pretty much afford the amount I wish to drink daily and it is very nearly the prefect Bourbon, to me. Well balanced, rich and sophisticated with a great kick, complex patale and killer finish. I'm good! http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/yum.gif

Ken

Sweetmeats
11-17-2005, 16:26
Obviously I would choose Elmer T. Lee.

Side note: I've realized recently that what I truly like about Elmer is the heavier amount of rye in it. Now I've tried Wild Turkey 101 recently and it tastes similar. If I remember correctly, somebody said Wild Turkey has more rye than most? If that's the case, I may have to try Kentucky Spirit, or Rare Breed or Russel's Reserve. http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/yum.gif

camduncan
11-17-2005, 16:27
I don't know what bourbon I'd choose - I just enjoy too many of them to pick.
Non-Bourbon is easy - Old Rip Van Winkle 13yo Rye http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/yum.gif

EricABQ
11-17-2005, 16:29
I'm going to have to second your nomination of Kentucky Spirit.

And, I wouldn't even get bored with it if I could also have one Scotch and one rum.

Gillman
11-17-2005, 16:43
Elmer T. Lee, the closest to a perfect bourbon I know. I might have said, Rock Hill Farms, but it isn't as consistent as ETL.

Gary

barturtle
11-17-2005, 16:58
This is a nice litle thought provoking idea.

I normally drink as a house pour Charter 12, as its low price allows for the purchasing of more expensive whiskies that I couldn't drink everyday, but if I could only have one for the rest of my life, I wouldn't have to worry about spreading the money around. I don't quite think the budget would stretch to allow me to drink $40 bottles on a regular basis, but I can see$30-32 happening.

One bourbon that I love barely squeeks into that at $32 and change: Rare Breed.

I think I can live with that. http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/lol.gif

RedVette
11-17-2005, 17:02
I might have said, Rock Hill Farms, but it isn't as consistent as ETL.




It is also two to three times the price.


I do not have the confidence in my ability to pick a bourbon today that I will still prefer a year from now. My preferences have changed dramatically over the past year, I see no reason to assume that they are now permanent.

BrbnBorderline
11-17-2005, 17:40
I guess I'd hafta go with WT RB.

ratcheer
11-17-2005, 17:42
Right now, I would choose Elmer T. Lee. It has everything I enjoy in a fine bourbon and at a reasonable price.

Tim

bucky1
11-17-2005, 17:50
Expensive yes...but I'd have to say Pappy 20.

Jon

TNbourbon
11-17-2005, 19:18
Keeping in mind your proviso about personal affordability, I'd go with Weller 12yo, which is only available around here in 1.75L bottles, but for a wondrous $29.99 (in a store that routinely gives me a 10% discount http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/toast.gif).
Nice, well-aged bourbon at a great price.

alphaiii
11-17-2005, 20:13
Eagle Rare Single Barrel 10 Year Old.

This is the bourbon that really got me into bourbon, and it continues to be my favorite as far as taste goes. The price is right too.

bobbyc
11-17-2005, 20:37
Jim Beam Black. I couldn't go 10 years without a drink of that.

squire
11-17-2005, 20:52
I would buy Rock Hill Farms by the barrel and have it bottled in inexpensive containers.

If I had to buy by the bottle then Bulleit, Knob Creek, Elmer T., Elijah Craig or 100 proof Barton.

Those are my Bourbon choices. If I absolutely had only one choice it would be a well aged Rye.

Regards,
Squire

Edward_call_me_Ed
11-17-2005, 23:29
I could make a long list of bourbons that I could be happy with, day in day out, year after year. Choosing one from that list would be painful. I'll keep thinking about it, but after reading this thread, I found myself pacing back and forth, waving my hands, and talking out loud. http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/confused.gif

Ed

gr8erdane
11-17-2005, 23:42
For me it would be Van Winkle Family Reserve Lot B. I never tire of drinking this wonderful bourbon and if the bottle I grab happens to have Randy Blank's name on the sticker so much the better! http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/thankyousign.gif

smokinjoe
11-17-2005, 23:47
I guess this question really puts one on the spot. A lot of terrific options, but I have to go with Evan Williams Single Barrel 1994. This is my favorite of the EWSB family and is also at the top of my list of favorite bourbons. To me, it goes well on a hot day, a cold day, when I'm happy, and when things go to crap. I love it's range.
http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/toast.gif
JOE

lakegz
11-18-2005, 03:16
Id go with a Wild Turkey Rare Breed as well. I could always easily restock that.

kbuzbee
11-18-2005, 06:17
I do not have the confidence in my ability to pick a bourbon today that I will still prefer a year from now. My preferences have changed dramatically over the past year, I see no reason to assume that they are now permanent.



I understand that. Tastes do truely change over time. According to Ken W. this even happens to the pros (he mentioned Elmer has developed quite a sweet tooth, very apperent in ETL). So in five years you may want to petition the courts to revise your choice....

But today, the pressure is ON. If you don't select one you will be denied ANY Bourbon.....



Ken http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/icon_pidu.gif<font color="blue">And thanks everyone for playing! Fun discussion.</font> http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/icon_pidu.gif

jburlowski
11-18-2005, 06:20
I second the vote for ETL... outstanding value for the price.

kbuzbee
11-18-2005, 06:57
I could make a long list of bourbons that I could be happy with, day in day out, year after year. Choosing one from that list would be painful. I'll keep thinking about it, but after reading this thread, I found myself pacing back and forth, waving my hands, and talking out loud. http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/confused.gif

Ed



Ed, I gotta tell you, the vision of you pacing around over this has had me smiling all morning. Great image! Thanks!

Ken

jspero
11-18-2005, 07:49
Count me in with the Elmer T Lee crowd. I've really come to like this over the past couple of months. If I had to pick a second choice, it would be some form of Eagle Rare.

Jay

Punchy
11-18-2005, 08:09
I guess this question really puts one on the spot. A lot of terrific options, but I have to go with Evan Williams Single Barrel 1994. This is my favorite of the EWSB family and is also at the top of my list of favorite bourbons. To me, it goes well on a hot day, a cold day, when I'm happy, and when things go to crap. I love it's range.
http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/toast.gif
JOE



This would be my choice as well, and I could not have put it any better. There are certain bourbons that are great on a winter day and there are certain bourbons that are great on a summer day. This one just seems to be great all the time.

Unfortunately, I have about two pours of the 1994 left. This will definitely be savored.

chasking
11-18-2005, 09:36
Elmer T. Lee. ( http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/22.gif, I know. But it's so good.)

BourbonJoe
11-18-2005, 10:03
Well I guess if price be a consideration it would be Elmer T. Lee, if not, then any Van Winkle http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/bowdown.gif(most probably ORVW 15-107 except you can't buy it anymore) http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/banghead.gif http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/hot.gif
Joe http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/usflag.gif

gr8erdane
11-18-2005, 10:12
I see a lot of votes for Elmer T Lee here. I hope for all your sanity that you'd find the newer foil wrapped bottles rather than the old wax entombed ones. I envision a castaway on a desert island that finds a case of ETL washed up on the shore with the wax closure trying in frustration to open it with a coconut. http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/banghead.gif

angelshare
11-18-2005, 11:27
Guess we would have to go with AAA assuming we remained in VA. It's delicious and cheap - $12/liter.

Vange
11-18-2005, 11:35
I am relatively new to bourbons, but here is my answer...

I think I am overthinking the question, but if I had to only drink one bourbon for the rest of my life I think I would want it to be a higher end bourbon rather than a bargain bourbon. So, I guess my answer is PVW 20. I know that the pricing sucks as compared to the ETL or others, but I would want to go out knowing I went out with one of the best! No regrets!

I tried the Elmer T Lee and the OF Birthday bourbon at the philly whiskey festival and I actually preferred the OF Birthday bourbon. Don't get me wrong, for what we pay for ETL, it's damn good.

clayton
11-18-2005, 11:52
I reserve Stagg as my favorite pour, but it's not something I drink everyday. I have a bottle of ETL that is unopened (but won't be for long after reading all of these posts!). Until I check that out, I would probably take Weller 12 as a personal favorite.

I agree with Camduncan though -- I would happily drink VW Rye the rest of my life, but this thread isn't about rye. http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/smile.gif

kbuzbee
11-18-2005, 15:56
I am relatively new to bourbons, but here is my answer...

I think I am overthinking the question, but if I had to only drink one bourbon for the rest of my life I think I would want it to be a higher end bourbon rather than a bargain bourbon. So, I guess my answer is PVW 20. I know that the pricing sucks as compared to the ETL or others, but I would want to go out knowing I went out with one of the best! No regrets!

I tried the Elmer T Lee and the OF Birthday bourbon at the philly whiskey festival and I actually preferred the OF Birthday bourbon. Don't get me wrong, for what we pay for ETL, it's damn good.



You're not overthinking this at all. And that is exactly what I was looking for. What is important, to you, assuming you couldn't go high end one day and cost conscious the next. What is you most driving desire (okay, with Bourbon!). Is cost YOUR deciding factor? Or taste? Or age, oak, smoothness?? Where would you balance these?? Pappy 20 is a fine choice if you can afford as much as you want to drink (or, to turn that around, if you'd be happy only drinking the amount you could afford!). For me, I wanted something I could have 5-8 oz a day and not file for food stamps.

Angleshare - you don't have to stay in Virginia (though you certainly CAN). One of the criteria was you would have ample availability, but you'd have to pay whatever that Bourbon costs. If you can afford it, you can have it. But only one choice! So if you want to change from AAA feel free (but not compelled) to do so.

Thanks everyone for playing by the rules. This one is hard if you really think it through. Lots of votes for ETL. Many for WT in one iteration or another. I figured Tim to go for a Weller, though I wasn't sure which one.

Ken

Edward_call_me_Ed
11-18-2005, 16:33
I am still not done thinking, but I did have an interesting thought. I might either Booker's or Stagg. Both of them are on my top shelf, and, while neither of them is my absolute favorite, their high proof would give me more range than a lower proof bourbon. My favorite proof, day in and day out is somewhere around 100, so most days I could cut my choice down to that. Some days 86 to 90 proof is what takes my fancy, and what the heck, some days I might want a glass of brown Zinfandel.

Other days I want a really high proof bourbon in my glass. If I choose Elmer T Lee, which may be my favorite pour, certainly one of the top five, I wouldn't be able to drink a 120 something proof bourbon ever again.

However, neither of these whiskeys has the powerful cinnamon note that I currently value the most. Stagg has it more than Booker's. Hmm. I have a bottle of Olde St Nick 20 that has a lot of cinnamon, it is 58% too. More expensive than the other two. But I don't think that expense is that big a factor for me. I buy whiskey much faster than I can drink it so I am spending more per month than I would be buying only what I can drink of a more expensive bourbon.
Ed

BobA
11-18-2005, 17:07
I too have given this some thought, and thought the same thing about Stagg and Booker's as you, ED. Then again, I believe that I've said in other threads that I'd probably miss OGD 114 most if it left the market, on its mix of proof, price, quality, and distinctive taste. If I was only buying one bourbon, I could afford Stagg, given my consumption; like you, exploratory purchasing outpaces my drinking. But then never to re-examine wheaters, or those drinks I like when I just want a simple pour, or when I want something oily, or dry? No RHF, or even OC 12?

I have made my decision. I refuse to accept the premise.

Bob

Ghoste
11-18-2005, 21:27
This is a tough one for me to answer. I'm a neophyte to actually tasting and with limited product available in Canada, there is just SOOO much I have yet to try. My collection can't even rightly be called that yet as it's just too small.
So, given my limited experience, I have to go with something that is nice but fairly simple. My two current favourites have been Beam Black and Wild Turkey Rare Breed. If it has to be only one of them, tonight, the nod will go to the Jim Beam Black.

OneCubeOnly
11-19-2005, 05:26
Hmmm...a 'desert island' bourbon but you have to pay for it? If I can have Montgomery County pricing, I'll go for Blanton's. If I have to pay retail, give me standard Buffalo Trace.

I guess I'm one of the rare folks who just doesn't get it with ETL.

Edward_call_me_Ed
11-19-2005, 05:42
Hi One Cube,
It is interesting to me that you really like Blanton's but don't care for ETL. To me they are very similar bourbons. Real family resemblance. I guess YMMV.

I know how you feel, I don't 'get' EWSB. I have had it in bars and bought a bottle while I was home. I didn't finish it, but I put a dent in the contents. Very nice. No wow for me. I really like the Even William's line, too. The black label is good. The 12 yo red label is excellent. I have had a 15 yo once in a bar, very good.

As for the ETL, how many times have you had it? Under what conditions? I have to drink at least a bottle for my opinion to begin to stabilize.
Ed

BourbonJoe
11-19-2005, 07:06
I guess YMMV.

Ed



YMMV ???
Joe http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/usflag.gif

Edward_call_me_Ed
11-19-2005, 07:18
YMMV: Your Milage May Vary.
Ed http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/toast.gif

RedVette
11-19-2005, 08:04
But today, the pressure is ON. If you don't select one you will be denied ANY Bourbon.....



Then there is my answer. If I were limited to only one Bourbon, I am afraid that I would no longer be a Bourbon drinker. A major part of the enjoyment of Bourbon for me is the diversity of the product. I like finding rareties, I like finding bargains, I like drinking bad Bourbon so I have a benchmark to tell me what a good Bourbon should be. One Bourbon would be boring so I think I would just check out.

musher
11-19-2005, 08:15
I guess I'd have to end up where I started then, and choose Wild Turkey 101. It got the right balance of sweetness and spice that I would not grow tired of.

OneCubeOnly
11-19-2005, 10:44
It is interesting to me that you really like Blanton's but don't care for ETL. To me they are very similar bourbons. Real family resemblance. I guess YMMV.



I've heard ETL described as the "poor man's Blanton's" before, and I wouldn't even call it that. To me, ETL is a lot less esoteric, and in a whole different league. ETL has a bold punch of nutmeg/cinnamon which to me throws the balance off. I also find the sweetness a bit much.

I can understand the great following it has though...it's aged longer than Blanton's and definitely has a take-no-prisoners in-your-face boldness. It's just not for me I guess.



I know how you feel, I don't 'get' EWSB. I have had it in bars and bought a bottle while I was home. I didn't finish it, but I put a dent in the contents. Very nice. No wow for me. I really like the Even William's line, too. The black label is good. The 12 yo red label is excellent. I have had a 15 yo once in a bar, very good.



I'm very much the same way with EWSB, but probably for a different reason. I 'cut my teeth' so-to-speak into the Heaven Hill lineup with EC12, which I thoroughly enjoy. EWSB seems to have the same tastes but in different proportions, so it has always tasted slightly 'off' to my palate. I absolutely LOVED the 12yo Red Label that Koji brought (and we also tasted during the VIP HH tour).



As for the ETL, how many times have you had it? Under what conditions? I have to drink at least a bottle for my opinion to begin to stabilize.



I finished a whole bottle, but the final third went into ginger ale. For $16.99 I can't complain though!

tmas
11-19-2005, 14:57
Only one huh, ok, I gotta go with Old Rip 10yr 107. Love what's in the bottle, the price ain't too crazy, and, I love look'n at the bottle too. Tom V

SBOmarc
11-19-2005, 15:33
If I can only buy one it would be so very tough.

But....

Eagle Rare 10 y/o SB

Question? Can I have an occaisional sip of everyone else's?

kbuzbee
11-20-2005, 07:58
Question? Can I have an occaisional sip of everyone else's?



Sorry, with all the wonderful folks around here this would quickly become scenario abuse http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/lol.gif Suddenly there would be "gazebos" springing up all over the county functioning weekly (if not daily). It was defined this away in the premise to avoid having to call the scenario police! Nice try though.

Ken

Edward_call_me_Ed
11-20-2005, 08:32
Hi OneCube,
I see what you mean. One of the reasons that I like Blanton's is for the nutmeg/cinnamon note. The Blanton's that I enjoyed the most were the ones with the strongest cookie spice note. The bottle of ETL that I am working on now has that note in spades. It is a little one dimensional that way, which is fine with me, I like that dimension.

Elijah Craig 12 was one of the first bourbons that I had after coming back to whiskey about a year ago. I had the same problem with the Evan Williams line for the same reason as you did. The notes I was looking for were there in the EW, but subdued.
Ed

barturtle
11-20-2005, 08:44
The original scenerio does specificaly say bourbon though, leaving a wide open gap for drinking all of the Rye, Corn, Irish, Canadian, Scotch, Wheat and Japanese whisk(e)y you could handle. I was counting on this loophole to save me http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/lol.gif I might be able to limit it to one of each, but no way I can go down to one whisk(e)y for the rest of my life.

kbuzbee
11-20-2005, 11:10
The original scenerio does specificaly say bourbon though, leaving a wide open gap for drinking all of the Rye, Corn, Irish, Canadian, Scotch, Wheat and Japanese whisk(e)y you could handle. I was counting on this loophole to save me http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/lol.gif I might be able to limit it to one of each, but no way I can go down to one whisk(e)y for the rest of my life.



Oh exactly. I fully expect to still have a WT Rye, a Forty Creek Canadian and a Lagavulin Scotch for non Bourbon nights. I find I have the most variety with Bourbon making it a much more difficult selection process.

Ken

barturtle
11-20-2005, 11:35
I can see Van Winkle 13yo rye, Lot 40 Candian, Highland Park 18, Platte Valley Corn, Bernhiem Wheat(only one, so far, haven't had it but the chioce is there), Connemara Irish, and for relaxing times I'll make it Suntory time. http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/lol.gif

If I really want to cheat Old Potrero counts twice according to the government's rules, once as malt whiskey(the younger) and once as rye malt whiskey(the older), of course at this point we also start running into blends and grain whiskies and non-straights, but that starts getting ridiculous to track.

Talk about finding a loophole and running a freight train through it. http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/lol.gif

JimR
11-20-2005, 19:24
If I had to pick just one..........it would be WT RB.

Of coarse having at least one Irish and one Scotch would help me through it. In that case give me Black Bush and Highland Park.http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/smirk.gif

Jim

1holegrouper
12-03-2005, 09:18
Thought about this one for a while:

If money and availability were not considered it would definately be: PVW 20 (as good or better than Blanton's but not in a gaywad bottle)

If reality (money and availability) were considered it would be: WTRB