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  1. #1
    Advanced Taster
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Location
    Cleveland
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    143

    Look into your crystal high-ball to 2020!

    We all have spent a lot of time grumbling about the recent "bubble", and there is little doubt that it will continue to grow before it bursts. Posts alerting of shortages in product, dropping of age statements...heck dropping products all together seem to be more frequent too.

    I thought it might be interesting to look into the crystal high-ball and make guess on where our beloved bourbon industry will be in the year 2020.

    Personally, I think we will see continued elimination of value pours either to NAS, or all together, to make more juice available for "limited" or "special" releases. Whether it deserves it or not "limited" and "special" gets attention and probably will get more money. In reality it will likely be the same product we used to pay $20 for under another name.

    Also, with the popularity of a few of the flavored whiskey (i.e. red stag, honey, fireball, etc.) I would not be surprised to see the "flavored" portfolios explode the same way it did with vodka. Can't wait to get me some Whipped Whiskey!

    So what do you think?

  2. #2
    Guru
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Location
    Jackson, MS
    Posts
    11,786

    Re: Look into your crystal high-ball to 2020!

    Well it's always been about give the customer what they want so I expect to see more flavored stuff and emphasis on cocktails. That and more stretching in the middle as brands migrate lower while aged stock moves higher.
    We're Bourbon Geeks, it's who we are, it's what we do.

  3. #3
    Guru
    Join Date
    May 2013
    Location
    Louisville, KY
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    2,200

    Re: Look into your crystal high-ball to 2020!

    I expect worldwide demand grows faster than capacity does, and prices rising as a result....possibly even accentuated by Beams recent acquisition by the Asian market. The Japanese are regarded as connoiseurs of the upper shelf stuff, so I expect more of the best stuff will head there in higher proportions, possibly hurting the upper shelf prices more than the lower shelf stuff. But, I expect, as a result, even more stuff to go NAS to keep the lower shelf stocked.

    If any of the above happens, its all the same result: less supply, higher prices, more allocations, scarcer releases

    I'm not usually a pessimist.........

  4. #4
    Connoisseur
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Dunwoody, GA
    Posts
    726

    Re: Look into your crystal high-ball to 2020!

    Prices eventually have to rise to equalize supply and demand. Hopefully some of the new comers become players, High West and Smooth Ambler, further increasing supply with additional offerings and supply. Supply will increase as stock catches up with demand due to the higher prices. Some of the fanboy stuff subsides when prices normalize. I won't paint a picture of glut and bourbon bliss, but the frenzy will eventually stop.

  5. #5
    Enthusiast
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
    Location
    Philadelphia, PA
    Posts
    310

    Re: Look into your crystal high-ball to 2020!

    No an expert but my thoughts...

    Bourbon will face market saturation. With all the new craft distillers that will have real straight bourbon product, I think there is going to be a shift in bourbon drinker's willingness to pay for higher end spirits and the major distiller's will respond in kind. Pappy Van Winkle is an extreme example of everyone chasing the top shelf. New bourbon drinkers will expect to pay entry level scotch prices for their bourbon into the future. Profits will be greater than ever!

    High end will become the new premium and standard premium products like Old Grand Dad will be the bottom of the shelf, if not stripped of its quality and phased out completely. While Beam is making quite a push for the older brands to establish a foothold in the younger generation, none of this really matters as the off forgotten brands never make up that much of total bourbon production anyway. The writing on the wall is that all of the old brands that are prized right now (Weller, OGD, OF, OHH) will either be put on the cutting block or upgraded to higher end prices. The price bourbon drinkers will pay for the legitimacy of quality product. It was good while it lasted but the cats out the bag: quality bourbon has been severely under-priced for decades.

  6. #6
    Guru
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
    Location
    Houston
    Posts
    2,478

    Re: Look into your crystal high-ball to 2020!

    I don't know if it's been under priced or not. Some of the ultra premium stuff, maybe. Not the mid-shelfers though. How much does it cost to make a bottle of OWA? $3-$5?...and it sells at wholesale for $15 to the distributor? I do think that the prices are going to continue to climb and be much closer to the entry level scotch prices which is what $50-$60? If Weller 12 continues to exist by 2020 I wouldn't be surprised at a price of $45-$50 for a 5th.
    I've never tried GTS with any sort of soda. Maybe I'm missing out; but I'm OK with that.

  7. #7
    Disciple
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Location
    Wisconsin
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    1,534

    Re: Look into your crystal high-ball to 2020!

    WellerSR and OWA will once again have age statements. They'll both be 2yrs in the wood.

  8. #8
    Disciple
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Location
    Wisconsin
    Posts
    1,534

    Re: Look into your crystal high-ball to 2020!

    All WT products will be bottled at 61 proof, as that's better for cocktails.

  9. #9
    Disciple
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Location
    Wisconsin
    Posts
    1,534

    Re: Look into your crystal high-ball to 2020!

    Barton's disitilling equipment will have been removed, to make more space for BT barrels.

  10. #10

    Re: Look into your crystal high-ball to 2020!

    Anything age stated at 10 years old will be minimum of $45 per 750.

    12 year age stated, $65 minimum.

    Older than that, $100 plus.

    Quite a few 17 plus year old super premiums will be on market for $225 plus.

    Van winkle products will go exclusively to on premise only (like with some of the most sought after wines).

 

 

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