View Full Version : Booker's question
I was wondering if the batch numbers on Booker's bourbon meant anything in regarding to the year they were bottled or barreled? For example, a bottle I have here is Batch No C99-B-22, and I was wondering if this was bottled in 1999, or perhaps being 6 years 11 months, and being a current bottle, if it was the year it was barreled?
Thanks for any info!
I have saved the first bottle of Booker´s that I´ve ever bought. It is C87-D-21, 8 years, 8 months. According to your theory, then, it should hail from 1995 or 1996.
It was bought in 1998 or 1999. Your theory could hold water as it is more than possible that, due to modest bourbon sales in Sweden, the bottle could have collected dust in some Swedish liquor depot for a couple of years.
It appears to be a system similar to what they do on barrels, which is that they use letters instead of numbers for the months to avoid confusion (assuming you know the system) so Scott's bottle would be from February 22, 1999 and Hedmans would be from April 21, 1987. I have one that's B93-L-16, which would be December 16, 1993. I'm going to further theorize that the "B" stands for "Boston" and the "C" stands for "Clermont," the two Beam distilleries.
I'm offering this as a theory only. What do other people have?
I'm further theorizing that this is the barreled-on date, not the bottled-on date. But, you say, Booker's isn't single barrel. True, but as a "small batch," it probably is drawn from a batch of whiskey all made on the same day.
I have one...signed by Booker :grin: :grin: C-92-I-15
I'm offering this as a theory only. What do other people have?
How would you say this compares with the labeling on Baker's? There's an old thread around here (which I can't find right now) discussing the fact that nearly everyone's "old-label" bottling of Baker's has the batch number B-85-001. There was a comment in the thread, IIRC as told to the poster by Fred Noe, to the effect that, basically, there's no way to tell from the batch number when that batch of Baker's was made.
I have wondered, having never seen a different batch number on old-label Baker's, if there was just one "batch" produced with the old label before the new style was introduced, but that seems unlikely.
Not trying to hijack; just wondering if labeling on the small batches is at all similar across labels.
Tboner, could that have been a bottle of Jacobs Well? All of the bottles of J.Well have the same batch # printed on them.
That was true of Jacob's Well. It also was true of a short-lived iteration of JB black label, that had a fake batch number on it. I think they did it with OGD 114 too. I don't know for sure about Baker's, but that wouldn't surprise me. It's something Jim Beam did a couple of times.
Pretty much the giveaway is that if the batch number is printed on the main face label, it's probably fake. The Booker's number is on a small auxiliary label that also states the exact age and proof of that batch.
What got me wondering about this is that I have a bottle with Batch No C87-B-19, aged 7 years 3 months, and it got me thinking about when Booker's was first introduced. The small batch website says 1988. This particular bottle also has a number on the small label, 53836, which makes it look like a bottle number, but does not say so. Current bottlings do not have this.
This bottle was from a box with a solid wooden front, not the clear plastic front.
I have one from 1991 that is in an all-wood box too. Not sure when they went to the plastic front. The all-wood one is not the number I gave above. The all-wood one is on a high shelf and too much trouble to get to at the moment.
As for the other numbers, I don't know. Could be nothing, a label control number, for example.
On the Baker's bottles in question, it's a separate small label. I found the old discussion. It's on page 11 of Dougdog's Dusty Corners thread. mobourbon is quoted below.
"Doug, I e-mailed Fred Noe about the age of this and he said there is no way of knowing by that batch #."
That, I guess, may answer my question, though I don't have any bottles of Baker's to look at right now for comparison.
HighTower, I've only seen one bottle in the all-wood box, and I didn't buy it because it was overpriced vs. other stores in town. However, I'll stop in to the store and look at it soon to see if there's an add'l number on the small label like you indicate. You've got me curious about this...
I found an old bottle that says "batch no. C-E-15-84." Different format, but I read that as May 15, 1984. It says 6 yrs. 7 mo., so that means it was bottled in December of 1990 and I got in sometime in 1991.
It also has what appears to be a bottle serial number, 002388.
If that is, in fact, a bottle serial number, I think it would have to be a number within the batch, not from the first bottle filled. I mean, I know it was still a new brand, but surely they had sold more than 2, 388 bottles by 1990.
I have one bottle open at my bar right now.
On the label which is all like hand written by Bookers,
Lot No C-B-04-82 NO.19391
This one says 125.2 proof and to be seven years old.
On the back it says Bottled in Clermont.
Great Bourbon by the way.
I opened this one when I heard the news.
After looking around the Bar there was another bottle behind the shelf.
This one came in a heavy dark wooden box.
Has a branded B on the wooden cover.
This one just says Booker's on the Top
Seems like 7 years old,121.6 proof.
Lot no.C-E-19-81 No.07405
In the back says, 7 year old Bottled in Clermont
I dont know when Im gonna open this one.
Bumping because I picked up an older bottling yesterday. The batch number on the neck label begins with a "B." All of the recent bottlings I've seen start with a "C." I know at one time Booker's was all Boston distillate (per Jim Murray's Complete Book of Whiskey). I'm wondering if the "B" is for Boston, and if some distillation of Booker's now happens at Clermont (indicated by "C" labels). Is there any significance to the B and C denotations? In addition, as in Chuck's post above, the sequencing of what I assume are significant other numbers and letters is different on the older neck label. The distillation and/or barreling date (in this case, an "84," on current bottlings, usually a "99" or "00") occurs last in the sequencing on the older bottling. There is also an additional letter (in the case of my bottle, a "K"). Anyone know if this refers to a particular warehouse? It seems likely, but it could I suppose refer to nothing in particular.
Also, does anyone know when the first year was that Booker's was made available to the public? I read an old thread where Chuck mentioned that the first bottlings, done for family, friends, employees, etc., were in 1986 or 1987, and the product didn't go commercial for a few more years. But when, exactly, was this? My bottle is 8 years, 2 mos. old, meaning it was released around 1993. It seems likely this is one of the first two or three years Booker's was available to the public. Anyone have a bottle released commercially from an earlier date? If so, when?
The first bottles of Booker's about which I am aware are labeled Lot No. C-B-16-79. They are 7 years old, 120.9 proof, individually numbered, and were distributed with a bag. I believe these are the first holiday bottles distributed by Beam, but that has never been confirmed.
Later, barrels from 1984 (C-E-15-84, for example) were bottled as Booker Noe's Special Barrel.
Subsequent barrels (C90-K-28 and B95-C-31, for examples) were bottled as Booker's True Barrel.
My bottles of Booker's 10th Anniversary are labeled C90-B-8. The Booker's 2004 Commemorative bottles in the bunker are labeled B96-C-15.
Glad to find this thread, didn't want to start a new one. And I thought I had found a really old bottle of Booker's until I saw Koji's! Still, I had to get this because it was the first and only one I've ever seen in the all wooden box. Batch C87-D-21 which, from the logic I've read elsewhere, puts it in the bottle around '95. What I am most curious about is what is the little bit of copper 'wire' wrapped around the top of the bottle for??? Was there a hang tag or something that is missing?
I had a couple of bottles with that same wire around them, and they were the Booker's 10th Anniversary with the gold wax that had a commemorative hang tag. Other than that I have only seen the small batch tags affixed to Booker's bottles with the regular elastic.
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