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cowdery
06-14-2007, 16:55
Later this month, Woodford Reserve will roll-out of the latest whiskey in the Woodford Reserve Master's Collection. Since I know how much everyone here at Straightbourbon.com enjoyed the first Woodford Reserve Master's Collection whiskey, Four Grain, I wanted to let you know right away.

They aren't telling what it is but provided a pretty big clue. The roll-out is being done at two locations, the Woodford Reserve Distillery in Kentucky and an undisclosed location in Sonoma County, California, where Brown-Forman owns several vineyards. Taking a big leap, I'm guessing a Chardonnay-finished bourbon.

I'll let you know.

BourbonJoe
06-14-2007, 17:44
Why screw up an already mediocre bourbon with Chardonnay? Doesn't sound very appealing to me. I didn't like the 4 grain either.
Joe :usflag:

TNbourbon
06-14-2007, 19:38
Unlike BT's Chardonnay finishes of 6 and 10 years, I believe this one is in the 6-month range.

ILLfarmboy
06-14-2007, 20:26
I would be more excited about a wine finish if it was a Shiraz, Cabernet or even a port wood finish.

HighTower
06-15-2007, 02:15
I would also be interested if it was something to do with Shiraz or Cabernet, but not Chardonnay. If it is the red, I better get my hands on a bottle of four grain just for the hell of it. I always wanted one, but since I joined this forum it has changed my mind! I don't think I have heard a positive thing said about it, but if there are going to do different releases in the "Master's Collection", I may have to just get them all.

Bourbon is fun!:grin:

Scott

mgilbertva
06-16-2007, 13:18
I have not had the opportunity to try any bourbons finished in wine casks, but when it comes to scotch I find they don't appeal to me. The only wine-related casks that complement scotch, and likely any whiskey, for my tastes is sherry. For example, I love the Glenmorangie Sherry Wood 12 yr, but none of their other wine-woods. It just seems to me the wine is fighting with the scotch rather than complementing it.

But again, this is just my tastes, and bourbon may be different in that regard.

Mamba
06-16-2007, 15:03
This type of experimentation is inevitable, and maybe something great will be discovered, another type of bourbon. But in the meanwhile there will be floundering and flops, and as bourbon fans, it is simply our duty to call it as we see it and enjoy the ride. Even if a chardonnary-finished bourbon doesn't immedietely appeal to me, it seems more interesting than the latest flavored tequila or vodka.

I wonder... if you HAD to make a chardonnary-finished bourbon, what type of chardonnary would you try, what size cask, for how long would you guess to age it, and what type of bourbon would you use for the base?

mgilbertva
06-16-2007, 15:15
I agree completely. I'm glad there's people out there with the capital to try such experiments, and I'm certainly willing to buy a bottle to try it out - if only I could get my hands on one, e.g., the BT experimentals.

As for Chard? A big, fat, buttery chard like Lewis comes to mind, or maybe Sonoma-Cutrer for something less expensive.

pepcycle
06-16-2007, 15:23
In response to Hightower,
I find that batch #2 of the Four Grain is much better than batch #1.
I'm still not a fan, but its palatable, and in some ways like a scotch blend.
That's the most positive thing I can say

cowdery
06-16-2007, 17:01
I suspect it is Sonoma-Cutrer, a Brown-Forman brand. It fact, the reason I suspect it will be a Chardonnay finish is because I suspect Sonoma-Cutrer is the winery where they're having the west coast roll out.

(Read my original post to see what I know and what's speculation.)

TNbourbon
06-16-2007, 21:08
I suspect it is Sonoma-Cutrer, a Brown-Forman brand. It fact, the reason I suspect it will be a Chardonnay finish is because I suspect Sonoma-Cutrer is the winery where they're having the west coast roll out.

(Read my original post to see what I know and what's speculation.)

Mine is a third-hand report (via someone who heard it directly from Chris Morris, reportedly) that you are, indeed, correct, Chuck, and that the finish in Chardonnay barrel was about six months.

Hedmans Brorsa
06-17-2007, 04:28
In theory, I approve of experimentation, even though 99 % are failures, sooner or later a breakthrough will be achieved.

However, the tests with different finishes have gone on for many years now, in the Scotch industry, with no discernible improvement. I think this is mainly an attempt to pander to the non-whisky drinking crowd, who finds SMS too rough.

Good luck to B-F but Iīll stick to traditional Bourbon.

Rughi
06-20-2007, 08:49
tests with different finishes have gone on for many years now, in the Scotch industry, with no discernible improvement. I think this is mainly an attempt to pander to the non-whisky drinking crowd, who finds SMS too rough.

I think the Scotch industry is also desperately seeking a source of used barrels to augment the ever shrinking sherry and port barrel supplies. Bourbon barrel supply is strong, but ex-fruit-based barrels not as much.

The bourbon industry, though, wants that extra fillip from grape; bourbon doesn't _need_ a wine finish any more than a fish needs a bicycle.

Roger

Virus_Of_Life
06-20-2007, 11:10
I would be more excited about a wine finish if it was a Shiraz, Cabernet or even a port wood finish.

Me too! Or even Syrah...

Hedmans Brorsa
06-20-2007, 12:27
I think the Scotch industry is also desperately seeking a source of used barrels to augment the ever shrinking sherry and port barrel supplies. Bourbon barrel supply is strong, but ex-fruit-based barrels not as much.

Agreed. This is probably just as important as my theory. Then again, isnīt Sherry also an attempt to attract outsiders, however established? Either way, whilst not being crazy about Sherry maturing, I have certainly bumped into the odd masterpiece over the years. Wish I could say the same about other finishes. Good, yes, but they always fail to excite me.


The bourbon industry, though, wants that extra fillip from grape; bourbon doesn't _need_ a wine finish any more than a fish needs a bicycle.

Roger

Well, as it happens, I agree about this, also. :)

CrispyCritter
06-20-2007, 20:29
Then again, isnīt Sherry also an attempt to attract outsiders, however established?

I wouldn't be so sure about that, since there is a long tradition of Scotch being aged in sherry casks. It wasn't originally about the sherry so much as it was about picking up barrels on the cheap, but now with the solera system, and sherry no longer being shipped by the barrel to Great Britain, the supply is drying up.

The shift to bourbon casks is still a matter of picking up barrels on the cheap - and since bourbon must be aged in new wood, there will be a supply of used barrels as long as bourbon is made.

I wonder how much different a rye cask would be for aging Scotch?

cowdery
06-21-2007, 13:49
If you go to any whiskey distillery in Canada or Scotland, or any tequila distillery in Mexico, or any rum distillery anywhere except, perhaps, Cuba, you will have a hard time finding any barrels that are not used American whiskey barrels.

In Scotland, a common practice is to age grain whiskey in first refill bourbon barrels, and only thereafter to use them for malt whiskey.

Gillman
06-21-2007, 15:11
I was thinking that the other day, that the Havana Club I was sipping likely did not use ex-bourbon barrels and the taste seemed to be all bright citrus, brown sugar and "wild yeast", I didn't get any smoothing bourbon notes in it.

Just to test this further, I have some before me now. Again, I get citrus (lemon, orange zest), light brown sugar, and a wood barrel effect but nothing rich or bourbon-like. This is the Anejo Reserva, nice product. I can't really place the wood origin.

As a foil, I've got some 12 year old Flor de Cana next to it. The Flor de Cana (from Nicaragua) is very good, a little more neutral than the Havana Club but deeper in a way too, seemingly showing some bourbon barrel influence or possibly ex-Canadian whisky barrel effects.

I think I like the Nicaraguan rum better, but Havana Club is good too and quite unique in taste. Due to its rich up-front flavour the HC might mix better than the Flor de Cana ("flower of the cane") but the latter might be more suitable for neat sipping (at least at 12 years barrel age).

Many rums taste kind of generic but this is not so with Havana Club. It would make a great rum and cola, I've got to try this.

Gary

TNbourbon
07-03-2007, 20:29
It's official, I guess:
http://www.tennessean.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20070703/BUSINESS01/707030308/1003

Essentially, we were right (four months, not six -- mea culpa). Chuck, who is quoted, was, of course, spot on!

900 cases, $90 a bottle. I think I'll pass.

Now, "Parker's Heritage Collection" might be another matter. How come we haven't heard anything about THAT one?!:skep:

Interestingly, this story http://www.bizjournals.com/louisville/stories/2007/06/25/daily6.html?from_rss=1 says the wine-finished whiskey still is bourbon, because it was bourbon before the 'finish' was applied.