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  1. #11
    Irreverent One
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    Feb 2008
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    Heart of the Beaver State
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    2,395

    Re: Best mid priced beginner bourbon

    Quote Originally Posted by nblair View Post
    In my experience with trying to get people into bourbon (or liquor in general), the bottle you choose has to have these 2 qualities, if not others as well:

    1) It should have the quality people always describe as being "smooth", which I guess means they don't like the anything too spicy or the burn that comes from drinking spirits. So I think you want something not too high in rye and not too high in proof.

    2) As stupid as it is, if you're not doing it blind, the bottle has to have some sex appeal. A fancy bottle added to buzz words people know (small batch, single barrel, etc.) and you will be on your way to winning them over.

    My go to is usually Eagle Rare SB. Nothing offensive, 90 proof, mashbill is high in corn, good looking bottle, and "single barrel" written on the label.
    VW Lot B works well for this purpose, for the same reasons. However it costs more ($20 more in OR), and the ERSB is probably the better choice.
    Scott

    "Remember that your sense of humor is inversely proportional to your level of intolerance."
    - Serge Storms

  2. #12
    Guru
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    Sep 2004
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    Jackson, MS
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    12,075

    Re: Best mid priced beginner bourbon

    Pretty gets my attention but I've always had a soft spot for well packaged goods.

  3. #13
    Advanced Taster
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Location
    Nebraska
    Posts
    137

    Re: Best mid priced beginner bourbon

    Being an noob myself, I can only speak to the bourbons on your list that I have tried. When I was first starting out, one of the first few bourbons I got was Buffalo Trace. I thought it was a good starting bourbon because it was smooth, fairly straightforward noes and taste, and at 90 proof, its a baby step toward the higher proofs. It's not a sexy pick, but a solid one. Also, congrats on having a friend who wants to spend money on bourbon

  4. #14
    Guru
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    Sep 2004
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    Jackson, MS
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    12,075

    Re: Best mid priced beginner bourbon

    90 proof works fine for me, about the only ones I buy that are higher in alcohol are BIBs, unless something new strikes my fancy.

  5. #15
    Advanced Taster
    Join Date
    Nov 2010
    Location
    Chattanooga, TN
    Posts
    221

    Re: Best mid priced beginner bourbon

    There are a couple on your list I've not had, but ETLee is a super whiskey and fits your requirements of value and relative complexity for the dollar. The 2000 EWSB underwhelmed me. I'm a huge VOB fan - I think VOB BiB is one of the best whiskies in the world.
    "Brown eyed women and red grenadine...
    the bottle was dusty but the liquor was clean." -Jerry Garcia

  6. #16
    Enthusiast
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    Chicago
    Posts
    362

    Re: Best mid priced beginner bourbon

    Quote Originally Posted by squire View Post
    Pretty gets my attention but I've always had a soft spot for well packaged goods.
    It's too bad the new guys care more about looks than they do about her personality. It's too bad they don't make em like they used to
    Last edited by trumpstylz; 02-19-2011 at 20:38.

  7. #17

    Re: Best mid priced beginner bourbon

    I have to recommend Wild Turkey Kentucky Spirit. It's the only bourbon I've given a 10 out of 10 on my blog. The others I love are a little pricey; Noah's Mill and Vintage Bourbon 17 yr. I copied my review below and cited a review from this forum
    my blog awhiskeydrink.com



    It finally happened. I reviewed my first ten out of ten whiskey. I found Wild Turkey Kentucky Spirit about a year ago while searching for “bourbon ratings OR rankings” on google. A post over at straightbourbon.com came up rating Kentucky Spirit very high on taste and moderately high on value; I agree with both (Forbes).

    Kentucky Spirit is a single barreled bourbon, and each bourbon is hand selected. Master distiller Jimmy Russell selects for qualities of vanilla, a touch of sweetness, almonds, honey and leather. It is a fuller body bourbon and 50 percent alcohol, yet still manages to be remarkable smooth (Wild Turkey).

    taste - bright and sparkling upfront, orange, meringue, warm, white chocolate, dark caramels, vanilla spice, light oak, pepper, white smoke, hint of woods and earth on finish.

    smell - vanilla, white oak, orange blossoms, honeysuckles, rosewater, tree sap, cinnamon bark, boiling sugars, effervescent (I want to add “forests and log cabin” because of that woodsy, earthy tone).

    look - grade “A” maple syrup, amber honey, deeply aged Grand Marnier, burnt orange (a nod to Texas).
    rating - 10, my first 10!
    price - $37.50 - $50

    Cheers,
    Swift

    Work Cited
    Forbes. "Bourbon Comparison - Quality, Taste and Cost - Straightbourbon.com." Straight Bourbon: Makers, History, Brands, Tastings, Reviews, FAQ, Drinks ... Web. 19 Feb. 2011. <http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/showthread.php?t=742>.
    "Wild Turkey Kentucky Spirit." Wild Turkey Bourbon. Web. 19 Feb. 2011. <http://www.wildturkeybourbon.com/>.

  8. #18
    Disciple
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    Jul 2005
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    North Shore Boston, MA
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    1,604

    Re: Best mid priced beginner bourbon

    I'd vote for ETL or WTKS at this price point (gotta be a scotch drinker if $50 is "mid-priced"!)

    Agree with EWSB or VOB BIB for base+complexity profile.
    Kevin

    "Clears up her head with bourbon/Cause beer is so suburban/And declasse for what it's worth"

  9. #19
    Advanced Taster
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Location
    Oregon
    Posts
    190

    Re: Best mid priced beginner bourbon

    $50 is mid-priced? I usually have to think long and hard about throwing down that much for a bottle (although I have many times).
    Chris/Oregon

  10. #20
    Guru
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Location
    Jackson, MS
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    12,075

    Re: Best mid priced beginner bourbon

    I was thinking the same thing, to me mid price Bourbon/Rye is under $20.

 

 

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