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RWBadley
05-22-2008, 11:37
I found this site recently and have really enjoyed having a look around. I'm impressed by the breadth and depth of knowledge here.

My own history: I grew up in WA state. My dad made wine at home and remember some of it tasting OK. My own first batches were in the late '70's and were made from cherries and honey. Pretty good stuff. I've lived in Reno NV since '81.

In '84 I started making beer and became involved later in judging beer competitions. I have been judging since '86 and am now an American Homebrew Association national ranked judge. We just finished judging the first round AHA competion in Lodi CA and at the end of the month will travel to San Francisco to judge the Samuel Adams Longshot competition. I find the evaluation of beer and spirits to overlap somewhat, but with some different descriptors.

During the early nineties I acquired a taste for all things distilled and have made it a challenge to sample as many as possible. My beer judging partners and I found that after a 'hard' day swilling beer and evaluating drink (or drinking beer and evaluating swill) we were ready for something different afterwards. I'm open to all forms of spirit and discriminate against none. I favor Bourbon, Mezcal, Rum, Scotch, Tequila, Gin, Cognac, but find vodka and most sweet liquore less interesting.

I seem to remember quite a while back doing some experimentation with distillation, but my memory sometimes plays tricks on me especially as that sort of thing is illegal. I know a buddy that made quite a mess a few times when the kettle blew it's stopper and shot wash all over, yuck. Obviously poor temperature control.

In the late nineties I won two consecutive awards as Meadmaker of the year. These were for a key lime-red pepper mead and a chipotle mead. I enlisted my then teenage son to help with the addition of the red pepper spices, as I have an iron palate for heat and could easily overdo it. I told him to let me know when it started to get 'spicy', I figured that was a good threshold level, and it seemed to work. I'm not sure my wife was keen on me plying the kid with samples, but hey, gotta break some eggs to make an omelette...

My experience with Bourbon is not quite as extensive as with Scotch, but I'm getting there. I think many of our American whiskeys are world class and we are fortunate to have them available. I feel bourbon deserves higher recognition for character and quality, and I am happy to see a site like this where it get's paid due respect.

I'd appreciate a tip or two on a favored Bourbon you might have. I'll share a couple of my best (other beverage) values here: Seek out Appleton Extra Rum. 12 yo and under $30. Great for sipping or put a small bit in your split winter squash with raisins and a pat of butter and bit of brown sugar then bake. Deelish

Another tip (and I'm hesitant to let this cat out of the bag) is Del Maguey Mezcals. In the $75 range and incredible complex and mouth watering flavors. A real treat.

Cheers,

RW

spun_cookie
05-22-2008, 11:48
Glad to see you.. I make my own wine as well.. I recomend the wheatier bourbons first... and work your way up. Weller is where I would start

mozilla
05-22-2008, 11:49
Well Howdy right back at ya'!

Sounds like you have gotten your feet wet a few times. Welcome to the board. You will find many opinions on every label, here. Lot's of indepth research has taken place....to the betterment of all of us.

There are also alot of beer and Scotch fans participating in the forum.

I hope you enjoy the site.

fishnbowljoe
05-22-2008, 15:30
Welcome RW, I am relatively new here also, but I've learned and experienced a lot in a short time with the info and help given by the members here at SB.com. As I was welcomed, so let me welcome you by saying; You'll like it here, learn a thing or two, have some fun, and best of all, meet some great people. So, let your bourbon journey begin! Have fun and enjoy.:toast: Joe

PS I agree with spun about trying wheaters first. Weller as he suggested, and I would also like to suggest Maker's Mark. It has a special place in my cabinet, as it was my "starter" bourbon.

PhilsFan
05-23-2008, 14:50
RW, Welcome! I would echo the sentiments about Weller (especially Weller Antique 107) I also enjoy Old Rip Van Winkle 10 YR/107.

-Joe

RWBadley
05-23-2008, 18:43
Well Howdy right back at ya'!

Sounds like you have gotten your feet wet a few times. Welcome to the board. You will find many opinions on every label, here. Lot's of indepth research has taken place....to the betterment of all of us.

There are also alot of beer and Scotch fans participating in the forum.

I hope you enjoy the site.


RW, Welcome! I would echo the sentiments about Weller (especially Weller Antique 107) I also enjoy Old Rip Van Winkle 10 YR/107.

-Joe

Thanks for the welcome.

I have had my feet wet- a few times up past the knees ;-)

I'm glad to hear you mention the Old Rip 10 yr. I've always liked that one. I think the bottle I have is from when they first sold. Has it changed at all since? (same distillery?) I see now the label looks the same, but it's hard to tell where any of it comes from.

RW

doubleblank
05-24-2008, 06:06
If the ORVW 10/107 says "Lawrenceburg", then it is several years old and has SW whiskey inside. If it says "Frankfort"....then it could be SW or Bernheim, but most likely Bernheim. Both are good regardless.

Randy

JamesW
05-24-2008, 06:59
Welcome to the board. I have only been here a short time but have learned an awful lot during my apprenticeship here.

I have to second or third the suggestion of hitting the ORVW 10/107 ($30). That is a mighty fine bourbon to start with. If you want to hit the $40 range try some Rip Van Winkle 'lot b'. That is as fine a whiskey as you can get at that price. Let the journey begin.http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/icons/icon14.gif

Gillman
05-24-2008, 07:50
Lee's Discount in Las Vegas has just about everything one would want in bourbon (and much else) - at excellent prices. On the premium end, it has Parker's Heritage Barrel Proof, and few whiskeys show the quality of the high end as well as this one. I also like Bulleit, Rare Breed, 1792, WT rye, Sazerac rye, all available at Lee's. Enjoy the board, good to see ya here.

Gary

RWBadley
05-24-2008, 10:45
If the ORVW 10/107 says "Lawrenceburg", then it is several years old and has SW whiskey inside. If it says "Frankfort"....then it could be SW or Bernheim, but most likely Bernheim. Both are good regardless.

Randy

Lawrenceburg, No. K6928.

Thanks for the info. I'm finding the knowledge and helpfulness here to be some great stuff!

Cheers,

RW