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  1. #1
    Novice
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Townsend, MT
    Posts
    1

    Smile Bourbon Making Advice

    Hi all,

    I'm new to StraightBourbon.com. I am in the process of assisting a friend opening up a distillery here in Montana. He will be producing rum and bourbon. The rum we have perfected very nicely. The bourbon needs work. Our latest test batch has a grain bill was too high on the malt. It had a very Scotch like flavor. The newest test batch will be more like the grain bill Basil Hayden uses. I have some experience tasting many fine single barreled vintage bourbons but am seeking advice as to what folks prefer.

    What do you prefer?
    Does price dictate quality?
    What makes that bourbon special? (Is it a specific wood that it's aged in? Is it made with more rye or wheat than the other? Why do you like it?)

    Any advice is greatly appreciated. We are hoping to open the doors up in another 6 - 12 months. Once it's a go, I'll certainly let folks know.

    Cheers,

    Joseph Gill
    Last edited by Virus_Of_Life; 06-15-2012 at 22:51. Reason: Please refrain from pimping out your business until you've been here a while and got permission.

  2. #2
    Virtuoso
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Location
    Sutton, Massachusetts
    Posts
    1,201

    Re: Bourbon Making Advice

    Well ... you're in for quite a bit of advice, I'd think - not sure how it is going to converge! Taste preferences are as varied as bourbons on the market ...

    Whatever you decide to do, for me, the best bourbons (or any spirit) stay balanced, so nothing sticks out. There are many styles that will fit different circumstances/moods, etc. Are you targeting a particular market segment (premium/specialty, everyday bourbon, both?)
    Mark

  3. #3
    Connoisseur
    Join Date
    Oct 2011
    Location
    Piqua OH
    Posts
    828

    Re: Bourbon Making Advice

    Hi Joseph, and welcome to the site. I'm sorry if you find this a bit rude, but it is what it is. There is a ton of info available here, about every question that you asked. The search function is your friend. If you and your friend are serious about a quality bourbon, spend the time researching this site from top to bottom, don't take the easy way out, which I think you are doing by your post...
    The liver is evil. It must be punished...

  4. #4
    Guru
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    Northwest of Peoria
    Posts
    4,437

    Re: Bourbon Making Advice

    The best advice dosn't center around taste profiles and mashbills.

    Low proof off the still

    low barrel entry proof

    And 94 -100+ bottling proof.

    What we don't want is another micro that came off the still tasting more like GNS than white dog that was minimaly aged and bottled at 80.

  5. #5
    Enthusiast
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Location
    Chicago
    Posts
    327

    Re: Bourbon Making Advice

    Quote Originally Posted by ILLfarmboy View Post
    The best advice dosn't center around taste profiles and mashbills.

    Low proof off the still

    low barrel entry proof

    And 94 -100+ bottling proof.

    What we don't want is another micro that came off the still tasting more like GNS than white dog that was minimaly aged and bottled at 80.
    +1

    And whether or not you have to start selling 2-year aged whiskey from the start, start aging some older stuff from the get-go. 6-year, 10-year, 12-year, etc. And use 53 gallon barrels.

  6. #6
    Enthusiast
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Location
    Arlington, VA
    Posts
    322

    Re: Bourbon Making Advice

    What do you prefer?
    Delicious bourbon at a cheap price.

    Does price dictate quality?
    Not necessarily, but the age of the spirit weighs on the price.

    What makes that bourbon special? (Is it a specific wood that it's aged in? Is it made with more rye or wheat than the other? Why do you like it?)
    This is different for each drinker. I highly recommend getting an idea and a taste for what you like in bourbon and going for that. IMO if you're at this small of a scale, making bourbon for what you think someone else will like is going to be problematic. Drink up. Read the forums and formulate your own opinion. Develop your palate and determine what it is you want to contribute to the variety out there. If you really want to analyze the components of what creates flavor profiles, then maybe you're an ideal customer for BT's Single Oak Project. You'll at least be able to write off your bottles on your tax return...

    If you're asking if there's a hole in the market somewhere for bourbons, IMO the answer to that is yes, but in order to fill it, you're going to have to make some incredible whiskey and sit on it for 12 years

  7. #7
    Disciple
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Location
    Northern Indiana
    Posts
    1,661

    Re: Bourbon Making Advice

    Small barrels don't make for faster aging, it makes for different aging. Don't take the bait. You won't be able to comete on price, so make a different product. I wish more micros would make whiskeys, so they'd have more freedom to make a product that has a more distinct taste.

  8. #8
    Connoisseur
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Location
    Kilgore, TX
    Posts
    686

    Re: Bourbon Making Advice

    There are tons of start ups using small barrels and aging for anywhere from months to a few years. If you want to differentiate yourself, use the advice given above about large barrels, proofs, and just as important for good bourbon, time.

    Me personally, I prefer high rye mashbills. Aged for anywhere from 6-15 years in large barrels. All bourbon is aged in new charred white oak barrels, so wood choice is pretty easy.

    And price does not dictate quality. I have paid $30 for a 3 month old baby bourbon 375ml that is crap. I have also paid $20 for a liter of great bourbon.
    "this hobby is supposed to be fun. When it stops being fun, check yourself, because you're doing it wrong." Charles Cowdery

  9. #9
    Mr. Anal Retentive Bourbon Drinker
    Join Date
    Jul 2003
    Location
    Houston, TX
    Posts
    1,811

    Re: Bourbon Making Advice

    1st time poster; restrain yourself.....troll

  10. #10
    Virtuoso
    Join Date
    Oct 2011
    Location
    Atlanta
    Posts
    1,221

    Re: Bourbon Making Advice

    Go to Kentucky. Find a nice hillside & buy 5 acres. Brew ur bourbon as best you can. Sit by the fire and wait 6-8 years. Bottle and enjoy. Then share with friends and watch the fever spread! Congratulations you are an instant bourbon millionaire!
    "On a long enough timeline, the survival rate for everyone drops to zero"
    T. Durden

 

 

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