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  1. #1
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    20 yr aged bourbons???

    This is my first thread fellows. Would an Old Grand Dad, Very Old Barton, Evan Williams or Old Forester be up on par with a Pappy van Winkle 20 year, if and if, they were allowed to mellow in the barrel for 20 years? If so, why do these other labels not kick it up to twenty year? What is happening here? If not, why?
    Last edited by Billy Bourbon; 01-15-2012 at 00:16.
    One more pour
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    We all face this in some way...

  2. #2
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    Re: 20 yr aged bourbons???

    I can't speak as to whether or not those brands would be on par with Pappy if aged for that same amount of time. Others here would know better. However, I doubt any of them would be as successful commercially as Pappy has become. Pappy Van Winkle, quality of the bourbon aside, is a marketing triumph.

  3. #3
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    Re: 20 yr aged bourbons???

    We sometime have an inflated sense of our opinion on the bourbon market as a whole. The question is, if they did in fact invest the time, money and warehouse space to age something like OGD, would people that drink it be willing to pay up for it? I mean (from what I have been told here), Basil Hayden is aged OGD, and it isn't exactly setting the world on fire, so if you were to age it another 12 years, would ANYBODY be willing to pay the price that makes it worth it for the distiller?

    Conversely, would the name and image of the brand prevent people from paying up because the public perception of a brand? (the same reason aged OGD is called Basil Hayden?)

    we don't know the answers to tjese questions... But I bet the distillers do.

  4. #4
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    Re: 20 yr aged bourbons???

    I could see OGD being very good at 20 years. You can draw a comparison on the Wild Turkey line. Starting with the 4yo 80pf and moving eventually up to the American Spirit, you can see the progression a high rye content bourbon will make. If OGD were to follow the same path, it think at 20 years, it would be a phenomenal bourbon- at 100 proof.
    If you have anything Michter's or Pennco and would like to sell it or share it with me, please let me know.

  5. #5
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    Re: 20 yr aged bourbons???

    Not everyone likes 20 year old Pappy Van Winkle. Those that do not like it, dislike heavily wooded bourbons. Most distillers believe that bourbon peaks in 6 to 8 years. Why risk losing so much volume in 20 years and result in an expensive bourbon that may not be popular? Also, if you are currently selling all of the bourbon you produce, why take up space for another 12 to 14 years with something that may be undrinkable or at best, appeal to a smaller group?

  6. #6
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    Re: 20 yr aged bourbons???

    Quote Originally Posted by Billy Bourbon View Post
    Would an Old Grand Dad, Very Old Barton, Evan Williams or Old Forester be up on par with a Pappy van Winkle 20 year, if and if, they were allowed to mellow in the barrel for 20 years? If so, why do these other labels not kick it up to twenty year? What is happening here? If not, why?
    Although not the only factor & explanation, I think to a large degree the 'bottom line' is the bottom line. These labels/distilleries/companies don't really have to do it to turn more profit. Of course, we as aged bourbon & rye seekers would love it. However, we don't represent the majority of consumers out there. We command some influence, some dollars...but, not nearly the muscle the average JB, JD, VOB, EW, MM, etc., consumer demands & purchases. Currently, these companies most likely just do not view such ventures/risk as a possible improvement to their bottom line & rewards. If one visits a large retailer in a large urban area as I sometimes do, all you have to do is stand there a while or converse with a store clerk while observing the average bourbon buyer. Most could care less about age and quality. In fact, many will make a purchase decision based on nothing but price, an established label (JD), or nothing more than what "someone told me".

    Lately, I have even talked to a few of them as they made purchase decisions. The remarks & decisions are usually along the same lines...something cheap, something for mixing, under $15-20. A couple of weeks before Christmas, a young lady asked me & a store clerk what we would recommend: her boyfriend told her "to get something good, but cheap". She ended up with Benchmark based on what the clerk advised. Not a knock on Benchmark, but, I told her to make sure to have something good to mix with it...IMHO of course.

    Now, I find myself in a digression too far off the subject. If you consider each of the labels you mention, the companies behind them already do so well in the marketing or reputation of said labels, there is really no reason to leave it aging for a lengthy number of years such as 15-20. As has been stated here many times, the cost of maintaining & aging those barrels is higher....and, who knows how much is going to be left after the angel's share? It just does not make economic sense for them is basically the way I see it.

    I don't know about OGD, VOB or OF, but there is a 23yo EW product that is sold outside the U.S. From time to time one appears or is mentioned here. That opens up another tangent: the overseas market appears to pay whatever these companies ask for young & old bourbon. If these producers do make anything else in addition to EW23 as far as longer-aged bottles, about the only place to make steady, consistent and profitable sales of it is overseas. There is so much corporate decision-making well beyond & higher than the distillery executives and master distillers onsite in KY or elsewhere. Except for perhaps Julian, these guys/gals we talk to from time to time likely have nothing to do with what is aged, how long it is aged, what/how much is released, where it goes, etc., etc.

    Sorry it this is a bit choppy and hit & miss. Fighting a cold, cold medicine, etc. As normal operating procedure on this end....just my 2 cents and humble opinion. Now, I'm going back to bed until kickoff time.

  7. #7
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    Re: 20 yr aged bourbons???

    Quote Originally Posted by JayMonster View Post
    We sometime have an inflated sense of our opinion on the bourbon market as a whole. The question is, if they did in fact invest the time, money and warehouse space to age something like OGD, would people that drink it be willing to pay up for it? I mean (from what I have been told here), Basil Hayden is aged OGD, and it isn't exactly setting the world on fire, so if you were to age it another 12 years, would ANYBODY be willing to pay the price that makes it worth it for the distiller?

    Conversely, would the name and image of the brand prevent people from paying up because the public perception of a brand? (the same reason aged OGD is called Basil Hayden?)

    we don't know the answers to tjese questions... But I bet the distillers do.

    Basil Hayden might set the world on fire at 100 proof.

  8. #8
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    Re: 20 yr aged bourbons???

    One cannot discount the importance of:

    —mash bill, the quality of the individual ingredients, and how they've been prepared
    —type & quality of the barrels used for aging
    —the warehouse its aged in, including placement in the warehouse
    —the distiller and his skills, and ability to have patience + concern for quality over twenty years

    Skimp on one of these and the profile is affected. I have respect for any bourbon whose history extends back decades, whether its $20 or $250, so I cast no aspersions on any of the brands you listed. I'm merely suggesting it isn't easy matching the profile of a classic bourbon simply by more aging.

  9. #9
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    Re: 20 yr aged bourbons???

    Quote Originally Posted by clingman71 View Post
    Basil Hayden might set the world on fire at 100 proof.
    Even if it costs, say 20% more?

    American Bourbon drinkers are by and large... Frugal.

  10. #10
    Bourbonian Of The Year 2013 and Guru
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    Re: 20 yr aged bourbons???

    Frankly, if someone were to offer me my choice OF Signature, OGD 114, VOBBIB, EWBIB, and Pappy 20, I'd probably pick each one 20% of the time. Even if at the same price point. I would just say, don't read too much into increased aging. Like WIG posted earlier, it's just one part of the total picture. And can in fact, degrade a whiskey, rather than help it.
    JOE

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    Bark less.

    "Every bottle is its own learning experience." -- Sensei Ox-sama

 

 

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