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View Full Version : How much Hirsch 16 yr old is left?



GreggB
12-16-2007, 19:53
Anybody know how many bottles of Hirsch 16 yr old are still available? I have seen where the price has been shooting up, and was wondering if that means we are really nearing The End.

Old Lamplighter
12-16-2007, 20:20
Just a guess: In general, we are not as close to the end as the retailers would like us to believe. However, in some areas/states, it is already gone and perhaps next to impossible to find more if you are in a state (such as mine) that forbids 'importation'. Therefore, if 'reasonable' (under $100 IMO) and you find yourself in one of those states like me, it might behoove you to buy it while you can. For the fortunate others, I understand it is still available at places like Binny's. So, it's still out there. You just have to work a little harder now to hunt it down. I am planning to purchase a couple tomorrow if the price is still around $90 where I last saw it at a certain store. If they have raised the price over $100, I am out of the hunt. Another retailer I passed thru last week had it for $150. I am told it has reached asking prices close to $200 in some parts of the country.

IMHO, unless someone decides to make an attempt to go all-out and buy it up quickly thereby shrinking the market more rapidly, we are still a year or so away from seeing it disappear completely. Of course, there is always ebay but be prepared to pay a premium as time moves forward.

MikeK
12-17-2007, 09:59
I recall reading an article in the last year or so where Henry? Preiss discussed the Hirsch stock. He stated that only about half of what he had bottled as gold foil had been released. His intention was to release the remaining half over the next 'x' years, a little at a time, increasing the price each time.

+1 for honesty.
-1 for gouging.

Yes, it is a free market, and price/demand even out. But I also applaud those companies that charge much less than they could get away with, presumably to do the right thing and get the whiskey into the hands of those who would enjoy it vs. those who just want to collect it.

For instance, I can buy a Van Winkle '13'yo Rye for $35 (which is really about 18yo) or a Sazerac 18yo rye for $45 (which is really 20+ yo). At the same time there are pleanty of 20+ year old ryes out there far north of $100.

Thank you Julian and BT.

CrashRiley
12-17-2007, 11:06
I have almost 24 bottles in stock, and I'm told that my distributor has more if I want it. It's a s-l-o-w seller, though, I'm happy to do a generous discount to SB.com folks who want it, I have too many other Bourbons that need shelf space.

Pharaoh
12-17-2007, 11:18
Is it just me or does anyone else find that the last gold foil bottles taste like, ummm... other whiskey has been supplemented? Sure it's still good whiskey, but that was some serious oxidation process if the sudden sharper profile is really a "natural" occurrence.

JMHO

jwrussell
12-17-2007, 11:39
I can say that the local distributor had multiple cases available, but at ~$139/bottle I wasn't about to have my local store bring any in for me.

TNbourbon
12-17-2007, 14:45
Here's a 4-year-old exchange I had with Henry Preiss, the Hirsch owner:
http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/showpost.php?p=26032&postcount=19
I figure it's pretty much all in distribution by now. Or, at least, whatever isn't doesn't amount to many cases.

CrashRiley
12-17-2007, 15:00
I can say that the local distributor had multiple cases available, but at ~$139/bottle I wasn't about to have my local store bring any in for me.
Still a bargain compared with what my distributor is asking for it now. If I went out and bought more of it today, I'd have to charge $188.99/bottle for it. :bigeyes:

cowdery
12-17-2007, 16:14
When I spoke to the Preiss folks a little more than a year ago, they had 500 cases in their inventory. It probably will continue to be available, but the price will go nowhere but up.

Binny's no longer has it on their web site but I bought a bottle off the shelf at their Clark Street store about a month ago, for $79.99, and it wasn't the last one they had.

My sample size is small but I haven't had a bad bottle. As for the integrity of the product, all of the people who have handled it since its creation in 1989 have protected its integrity and I have no reason to suspect Preiss hasn't as well.

In some ways the brand was badly managed, but in fairness to all of its proprietors, the idea of a truly super-premium, long-aged bourbon from a famous, defunct distillery was kind of new, so they were making it up as they went along. My suspicion is that it has always been profitable but never earned its proprietors a lot of money because it was such low volume.

In 2003, Preiss had everything that was left bottled and it came to 2,500 cases, more than all of the previous bottlings combined. Early batches may have had some flavor variation since they were from selected barrels, but everything since 1993 has come from stainless steel. That's most of the 16-year-old and all of the gold foil. So, there has been a lot more of the gold foil around than there ever was anything else and that, with the increasingly rare weird exception, is everything that is still at retail.

Regardless of how much there actually is out there now, it is only going to get more rare and more expensive.

shyster512
12-17-2007, 19:04
I was told pretty much the same thing from my store. He had several bottles for sale at $134.99, but told me when he replaced this stock, he would have to charge $199.00. He told me the bottlles supposedly out there, but I have forgotten that number. It is limited, but with that high price tag, it should be around awhile. $200 per bottle should really limit its sale. While I find it enjoyable, I wll not pay any more than current price, and in fact find it difficult to pull the trigger on another bottle at $135.

NickAtMartinis
12-17-2007, 19:55
but everything since 1993 has come from stainless steel. That's most of the 16-year-old and all of the gold foil.


Chuck, do you happen to know how much of an affect, if any, the steel has on the flavor of the bourbon?

TnSquire
12-17-2007, 20:07
I saw a bunch today for 129.99

I saw some the other day for 79.99.

I saw some a month ago for 29.99. A bottle of it was my thanksgiving bourbon. It reminds me of Old Overholt.

TroyM
12-17-2007, 22:02
Over here Hirsch 16 ranges from $150 Aus to $195 Aus. All gold foil. Doubt very much if any of the wax varients would have ever hit our shores.

cowdery
12-18-2007, 00:34
Chuck, do you happen to know how much of an affect, if any, the steel has on the flavor of the bourbon?

Zero. The whole idea of dumping it into stainless is to get it away from the wood to stop it from getting any woodier. In stainless it is pretty much the same as it is in the bottle, inert.

cowdery
12-18-2007, 00:35
Over here Hirsch 16 ranges from $150 Aus to $195 Aus. All gold foil. Doubt very much if any of the wax varients would have ever hit our shores.

They probably did hit your shores but 15 years ago or more, when they were made.

Rughi
12-18-2007, 08:30
...In stainless it is pretty much the same as it is in the bottle...

Yep, but does it change over time?

We know that whiskey changes in a glass left out overnight and a bottle with a goodly amount of airspace will change if left for a period of years. When I asked about BT's stainless tanks I was told that they have no special measure to prevent an airspace - so if the tank is half empty, it's half airspace, and allows for a lot of interaction.

Roger

PS - I think Chuck's use of the term "inert" was quite on the spot. Dictionary.com references use phrases like "sluggish by habit or nature" or "not readily reactive with other elements" to define inert. Inert doesn't mean unchangeable, but rather slow to change.

NickAtMartinis
12-18-2007, 10:38
Zero. The whole idea of dumping it into stainless is to get it away from the wood to stop it from getting any woodier. In stainless it is pretty much the same as it is in the bottle, inert.


Thanks. I'm still a bit surprised that there is no flavor carry-over.

bigtoys
12-18-2007, 15:48
I have a bottle open (I'm drinking some now) and one bottle bunkered from when I was told it wouldn't be available anymore--that was about a year ago. I'm pretty sure I saw about 6 bottles the other night at Sam's HP.

All I can say is: Makes Pappy 20 at around $90 a pretty good buy.

Pharaoh
12-19-2007, 07:34
These are the sorts of things that only raise further questions.
When I spoke to the Preiss folks a little more than a year ago, they had 500 cases in their inventory. It probably will continue to be available, but the price will go nowhere but up.Let me state unequivocally, I have NO doubt your account of the events / discussion is accurate, Chuck.

Take a look at what Henry Preiss said June 15, 2004 (at 5:29PM to be exact):

Originally there was about 54,000 liters and over the years we marketed the brand and up to today there are about 200 cases left and everything is now bottled and in special storage.So about 300 more cases have materialized since then. There's been a couple of math problems surrounding the whiskey IMHO and here's another one.

cowdery
12-19-2007, 09:48
Actually, I misspoke, having written that from memory. Here is exactly what I reported in Volume 9 Number 6 of The Bourbon Country Reader (http://cowdery.home.netcom.com/page9.html) in October of 2006:

"The remaining Hirsch bourbon, the stash that had been tanked in Cincinnati, went [to Buffalo Trace] too. In 2003, Preiss had the last of it bottled by Buffalo Trace. It came to 2,500 cases, more than all of the previous production combined. That is the 16-year-old, 91.6 proof, gold capsule product that is in stores now. When we spoke with Steve Fox in last August, they had about 1,000 cases left."

Steve Fox is National Sales Manager for Preiss Imports. I'm not sure why I remembered it as 500, but that's entirely my mistake.

TnSquire
12-19-2007, 12:56
I think its a good $50.00 to $60.00 bottle of bourbon.

NickAtMartinis
12-19-2007, 14:19
I think its a good $50.00 to $60.00 bottle of bourbon.


Agreed. Some of the prices out there today are outrageous.

cas
12-19-2007, 14:46
I can find it in a few shops around Ann Arbor, but the price is just over $200.
I paid about $50 for a bottle of the blue wax in Myrtle Beach about 4 years ago. And I left a few bottles on the shelf. They were sitting next to the $70 bottle of 20 year old...
Craig

GreggB
12-22-2007, 14:48
I just talked to someone at Cork n' Bottle in Covington, Kentucky (the old owners of the Hirsch bourbons) and they do not have any in stock.

I have seen it here in St. Louis for $85, so I guess I should grab some before the infestation of $150 or $200 prices reaches St. Louis.

cowdery
12-22-2007, 15:50
The price jump in some places probably represents what the stores are being charged when they reorder. The stores where it's still under $100 are probably still working through existing inventory.

Thesh
12-22-2007, 20:38
I'm just happy I got mine at under $100 (that was some time ago). It's a decent whiskey, and all things considered if I hadn't bought it before I probably would have bought it in the future and been seriously disappointed.

NickAtMartinis
12-22-2007, 20:41
Anybody know how many bottles of Hirsch 16 yr old are still available?


I was told today that I purchased the last 1,000 bottles of Hirsch 16. ;)

GreggB
12-24-2007, 15:40
I was too late! I went to the store today, and the Hirsch 16 I had seen for $85 was now $160. Well, not exactly the same bottles -- the liquor manager told me they had sold out of the $85 stuff, and when he re-ordered, it cost him $800 per case.

So Chuck was right, as usual.

I'm not paying $160 for it.

That frees me up to buy something else.

Any suggestions?

Brennan77
12-27-2007, 08:15
The price jump in some places probably represents what the stores are being charged when they reorder. The stores where it's still under $100 are probably still working through existing inventory.

This is the likely scenario in most of the price increases. We recently bought 2 more cases at an increase of over $15/bottle in costs. The shelf price is higher accordingly.

GreggB
12-28-2007, 14:28
Are the numbers the liquor manager gave me standard kinds of numbers?

At $800 per case (I am assuming a case is 12 bottles - correct?), he is paying $67 per bottle, and selling it for $160 per bottle.

Is that a standard degree of mark-up?

AVB
12-28-2007, 15:02
I bought 16 bottles earlier this year from a place that closed for $60 per (plus tax) and sold 12 of them to friends all over the country for $75 delivered. If they had more I would have bought more but I can't see paying some of the $150-200 prices being mentioned.

cowdery
12-28-2007, 16:26
Although the nine-liter case (12 750 ml bottles) is considered standard, many super-premium products come in smaller cases. Woodford, for example, comes in a 6-bottle case, Stagg comes 3 bottles to a case. So, considering the numbers quoted, I suspect that $800 is for a case of fewer than 12 bottles.

GreggB
12-29-2007, 21:48
Thank you, Chuck.

Anyone know for sure what a "case" of Hirsch 16 yr old is?

I will ask the liquor manager what he meant next time I get over there.

Brennan77
01-01-2008, 07:37
Thank you, Chuck.

Anyone know for sure what a "case" of Hirsch 16 yr old is?

I will ask the liquor manager what he meant next time I get over there.

I've seen them come in 12 bottle cases. But that could certainly be different in other areas.

mgilbertva
01-03-2008, 12:12
I paid about $50 for a bottle of the blue wax in Myrtle Beach about 4 years ago. And I left a few bottles on the shelf. They were sitting next to the $70 bottle of 20 year old...

Oh, ow, that makes me hurt just thinking of finding blue wax and red wax for that little ... and then leaving it!

Ted Wright
01-07-2008, 05:11
So it looks like I am late to the discussion but I am new to the forum but the Hirsch 20 is my passion so I follow the pricing of the 16 just in case I ever see some 20 the gets disgourged by the gods and lands on a shelf.

In Atlanta there is plenty at $135. That price has held for the last couple of years.

On E-bay the 16 generally never gets any bids when priced over $130.

All the disrtibitors that I have talked with as well as the guys at Sam's and Binny's tell me there is plenty left in the market. In fact Binny's was trying to unload a bunch about 20 months ago and I got a call at my house. I like the 20 much more than the 16 so I passed and saved my bucks for the rare times I can squeeze out a 20 from someone.

Rake
01-07-2008, 11:29
For what it's worth, Hirsch 16 is pretty easy to find around here for about $80. Stores must be working through existing stock, and it doesn't appear to be moving very quickly.

GreggB
12-07-2008, 19:03
It's now hit $200 here in St. Louis.

p_elliott
12-08-2008, 06:42
It's $418 on some of the internet sites.

wadewood
12-08-2008, 15:56
lots left in Houston area for $160

GreggB
12-08-2008, 18:09
A great bourbon, but not worth (in my opinion) what it is going for these days.

About five years ago, I bought a bunch at Cork 'n Bottle in northern Kentucky (just across the Ohio River from Cincinnati) for $60 each, and am glad I did!

drli
12-09-2008, 17:37
$289.99 here at bevmo.... in Northern CA. Dont see it anywhere else.


ebay has one bottle for $229.00.



supply seems to be drying up.

GreggB
12-10-2008, 09:12
I did find some last night, for sale here in St. Louis, for $160.

Anyone know how many bottles/cases/whatever remain?

whskylvr
12-13-2008, 21:44
A. H. Hirsch 16yr old. The supplier has less than 40 cases left this does not include what is actually out in the marketplace.

They are selling approx 5-8 cases per month to the distributors. I believe the supplier (Preiss Imports) will be sold out by late spring or early summer. As I receive more info I will post it.

Dave

cowdery
12-14-2008, 16:39
Brett at Binny's reports that they have quite a bit of it, although I neglected to check their current price.

Vange
12-15-2008, 12:48
I think Brett has them for sub $100, not on website anymore though.

Attila
12-15-2008, 18:07
I think Brett has them for sub $100, not on website anymore though.

Are you talking Blue Wax?

Vange
12-15-2008, 18:08
No way, theyd be gone. Gold foil top.

GOCOUGS2002
12-15-2008, 18:31
I just bought two blue wax I found in Idaho, they are out there...you just have to get lucky.

spun_cookie
12-15-2008, 19:24
Damn!!!! Nice Find Cougs

cowdery
12-15-2008, 20:30
Yes, finding anything other than gold foil is a major coup.

But if you are going to find them, it would be someplace like Idaho where nobody except a SB.com person would think to look.

Attila
12-15-2008, 21:20
Yes, finding anything other than gold foil is a major coup.

But if you are going to find them, it would be someplace like Idaho where nobody except a SB.com person would think to look.

Or Japan, where harvesting them is not so impossible.

Vange
12-16-2008, 06:41
But if you are going to find them, it would be someplace like Idaho where nobody except a SB.com person would think to look.

ROADTRIP ROADTRIP! ;)

GreggB
12-16-2008, 16:59
[QUOTE=cowdery;151764]Yes, finding anything other than gold foil is a major coup. QUOTE]

Why? I have some gold wax, and some gold foil. Never seen any blue wax.

What's the difference?

Vange
12-17-2008, 10:13
In a nutshell, blue wax is the first release then the gold wax and finally the gold foil (there is a black wax too, but nevermind that for now). They are all 16 years old as they were stored in a stainless steal vat to stunt their aging. Many believe the extra time in the vat has done some harm to this fine bourbon and the releases with the least amount of time in the vat have been the best tasting of the bunch. This has been discussed in other threads as well, but I figured I'd give a quick lowdown/opinion on the differences. The only real way to know is to do a vertical with all 3!

Squash
01-10-2009, 21:19
I found a bottle of Hirsch 16/91.6, gold foil for $82. From what I gather here, the whiskey is overpriced, but getting rarer and more expensive.

What is the attraction that garners $2-300, if no one raves about what's in the bottle?

At this price, would it be a good idea to buy, bunker, and sell later?

smokinjoe
01-10-2009, 21:26
I found a bottle of Hirsch 16/91.6, gold foil for $82. From what I gather here, the whiskey is overpriced, but getting rarer and more expensive.

What is the attraction that garners $2-300, if no one raves about what's in the bottle?

At this price, would it be a good idea to buy, bunker, and sell later?

The only attraction for a $2-300 price range, is its novelty/rarity, IMO. However, some swear by it from a taste standpoint.

I don't particularly think it's anything special. But, I'd quickly drop $82 for it...and the other 4, if they had them. :D

Attila
01-11-2009, 01:00
But, I'd quickly drop $82 for it...and the other 4, if they had them. :D

It seems like in the last 6 months the blue wax has gone from about $80 to about $160 when it is available at auction in Japan.

I wonder why such the quick increase.

I also wonder why there is such wide variation in the shade of blue I have been seeing around here. Some more dark navy while others are more blue.

WsmataU
01-11-2009, 05:49
It seems like in the last 6 months the blue wax has gone from about $80 to about $160 when it is available at auction in Japan.

I wonder why such the quick increase.

I also wonder why there is such wide variation in the shade of blue I have been seeing around here. Some more dark navy while others are more blue.

That would make me nervous as well. Peeling a case of gold foil and re-dipping would triple its value. Gotta love e-bay!

Rughi
01-11-2009, 08:27
That would make me nervous as well. Peeling a case of gold foil and re-dipping would triple its value. Gotta love e-bay!

Hirsch has never been my game, but I seem to remember that the script label changed either between the blue wax and gold wax or between the gold wax and gold foil?

With drinkers prices having given way to collectors prices a long time ago on these, I'd keep notes and compare photos with known real bottles to protect myself from fraud if I were in this market.

Having tried a bit of Hirsch, I'd be really upset if I paid for wax and got foil. I didn't find such a large step between the two waxes, so I'd still be litigious if I got defrauded this way, but at least I'd pretty much have the juice.

Roger

spun_cookie
01-11-2009, 09:10
Between the red wax and gold wax:

8008

Thank you Moz for the image I pilfered from another posting of yours.

Virus_Of_Life
01-11-2009, 14:50
It seems like in the last 6 months the blue wax has gone from about $80 to about $160 when it is available at auction in Japan.

I wonder why such the quick increase.

I also wonder why there is such wide variation in the shade of blue I have been seeing around here. Some more dark navy while others are more blue.
I think the price increase David, is simply because people in the states with connections there in Japan have discovered it. $80 for a blue is highway robbery when you see the gold foil priced at $200+ here!!

As for the color variation, I'd assume just like a label or anything else it may get some variation over time from light exposure. I'll check my bottles and see if I can tell any variation.


That would make me nervous as well. Peeling a case of gold foil and re-dipping would triple its value. Gotta love e-bay!

I don't think it'd be that easy, and all it would get you is some gold wax assuming the person didn't notice the slight label variation between GWax and Gfoil. There is a slight difference in the gold labels.


Hirsch has never been my game, but I seem to remember that the script label changed either between the blue wax and gold wax or between the gold wax and gold foil?
That label change you describe happened, as you can see in Spun's picture, between the Blue Wax and Gold Wax.



With drinkers prices having given way to collectors prices a long time ago on these, I'd keep notes and compare photos with known real bottles to protect myself from fraud if I were in this market.

Having tried a bit of Hirsch, I'd be really upset if I paid for wax and got foil. I didn't find such a large step between the two waxes, so I'd still be litigious if I got defrauded this way, but at least I'd pretty much have the juice.

Maybe it's just me, but I've seen a a little bit of paranoia [for lack of a better word] about bottle fraud, but I've never read anybody state that they know of a case for sure? I understand it's human nature both to suspect the worst and to be greedy leading one to commit the worst; however to go to the extent of creating an identical label and wax dip in hopes of making a couple hundred bucks seems lunacy. It's not like the Hirsch Blue Wax label would be an easy one to forge, maybe for a talented graphic artist, then like I said I am sure that talented GA probably gets paid enough that it wouldn't be worth wasting the time. Just my 2cents but I guess I'd like to see if there's ever been a case of this before I up my level of concern.

Virus_Of_Life
01-11-2009, 18:09
... Not to mention the Blue Wax is bottled in the glass bottles that have the green tint. I believe Julian used these for all his original early bottlings. So, I guess if someone didn't know any of and research any of these things they could get taken by a counterfeit Blue Wax, but it's really unlikely me thinks!

cowdery
01-11-2009, 18:34
Re bottle fraud, I don't know of it happening with American whiskey, but from time to time it has been a serious problem with Scottish single malts.

Re the Hirsch whiskey itself, some people (i.e., me) consider it outstanding, others do not. I think I bought my last bottle or two of 16-year gold foil at $70 or $80 and if I had the money, I would buy more at that price. How much it's "worth" is subjective, but to me it's certainly worth $70-$80, and not as an investment or collectible, but to drink.

WsmataU
01-15-2009, 16:56
Between the red wax and gold wax:

8008

Thank you Moz for the image I pilfered from another posting of yours.

:bowdown: Thanks for the picture! I didn't realize that the blue wax had a different label (as if it makes a difference). I'll keep looking!

wadewood
01-19-2009, 16:11
You want Gold wax? Book a cruise on the NCL Jewel. They had Gold wax for $9.75 a pour. Their pour is strictly measured and exactly 1 oz.

Pink
07-08-2009, 19:10
Quite a while ago, at least six months, I was told by my local liquor store chain that they had no more Hirsch 16 Gold Foil for $80, and that if I wanted them to order, it would be $250 or more, if they could get it. Since then, they continue to put one bottle on the shelf at a time for the same $80, so I keep buying when I see it.

Sometimes I think it is a steal at $80 because I hear of it costing $250 elsewhere, but other times I think it is a scam because it keeps showing up for the same price and some people say the whiskey is "disappointing" and "funcky."

Should I keep buying at $80?

GOCOUGS2002
07-08-2009, 19:18
Pink,

It really depends if you like it enough to keep spending $80; if it is your favorite bourbon then by all means go ahead and buy it at that price (which is the lowest I've heard of in awhile).

I've tried pours bottle of Gold Foil and Blue wax and I can honestly say my taste buds have had better for significantly less money.

smokinjoe
07-08-2009, 19:24
Quite a while ago, at least six months, I was told by my local liquor store chain that they had no more Hirsch 16 Gold Foil for $80, and that if I wanted them to order, it would be $250 or more, if they could get it. Since then, they continue to put one bottle on the shelf at a time for the same $80, so I keep buying when I see it.

Sometimes I think it is a steal at $80 because I hear of it costing $250 elsewhere, but other times I think it is a scam because it keeps showing up for the same price and some people say the whiskey is "disappointing" and "funcky."

Should I keep buying at $80?

Yep, keep buying at that price. And, you would have been an absolute hero if you had included a bottle with those Glencairn's you got for your friend. ;)

All of that said, I don't get all the hubbub on the Gold Foil from a taste perspective. It's not struck me as being mind blowing. But, tastes differ...My rec to buy at $80, would be for the opportunity to sell at something significantly higher. Though to date, I've never sold a bottle for a profit. :crazy:

cowdery
07-09-2009, 09:16
I'm inclined to say that if you have to ask us, then the answer is no.

drli
07-28-2009, 21:34
well, its $289.99 here in NorCal..... at bevmo.

http://www.bevmo.com/Shop/ProductDetail.aspx?D=Hirsch&Ntx=mode%2bmatchall&Dx=mode%2bmatchall&Ntk=All&Nty=1&Ntt=Hirsch&N=0&ProductID=1922

If you can get it for $80-$90... go for it... while it lasts.

silverfish
07-29-2009, 07:07
When I was looking into this bottling, I checked
the web for on-line sellers. I have a list of 23
sellers with price range from $210. to $330.

The cheapest I found was $130. but the seller no
longer lists it on their site. I would love to find
some for $80.