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  1. #11

    Re: Old Charter BIB 7-Year-Old

    Charter 10yo is a staple in our store. From local experience, anyway, I'd say it's the most popular version in Middle Tennessee, at least.

  2. #12
    Connoisseur
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    Re: Old Charter BIB 7-Year-Old

    Old Charter has an interesting history. It was started by the Chapeze brothers at the distillery at Chapeze, Ky. (close to Beam, who uses the warehouses at Chapeze today). The first year of Old Charter sales is also the year of the first Kentucky Derby. The distillery and brand later was sold to Wright and Taylor. W.L. Weller and Sons bottled the product during prohibition for Marion Taylor, taking a percentage from the sales. After Prohibition the brand was sold to the same people who owned I W Harper and in turn was sold to Schenley in 1937.
    The history gets even more interesting after the second world war. Schenley over produced because they were expecting trouble from the Soviets and then really over produced during the Korean War because they were afraid they would have to go back to war production of alcohol. Schenley knew they could not sell of this whiskey in 8 years (the bonding period) so they pushed to have the bonding period pushed to 20 years. In the meantime they increased the age of Old Charter to take care of the older whiskey they had on hand. Old Charter became the "Whiskey that did not watch the clock" and the yellow label was designed with a clock on it (7 o'clock for the 7 year old, 8 o'clock for the 8 year old). They invested into an antique clock collection and they would tour the country with the collection to promote Old Charter. After the bonding period was extended to 20 years, they created a 10 and 12 year old products.

    In the mid 1950's Old Charter also fought a legal dispute with the Charter Oak brand that lasted about 10 years before they finally won their trademark infringement case.

    When U D had the brand they continued to bottle the 7, 8, 10 and 12 yo products and created a label for the Japanese market but the whiskey for the Japanese was actually Old Fitzgerald wheated bourbon.

    Mike Veach

    P.S. TheChapeze distillery can be seen in the movie "Stripes". They filmed the Czech scenes at the distillery.

  3. #13

    Re: Old Charter BIB 7-Year-Old

    In luck! The distributor still has some bottles, so we got a couple more back in on reorder. I've also found a handful of bottles at an older liquor store in Nashville. So, I'll be cracking open a bottle soon.

  4. #14
    Disciple
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    I recently found a 200 ml bottle of this same stuff, Old Charter BIB 7 yr old, at a liquor store in Baytown, TX (near Houston). There are several still on the shelf if folks are interested. Mine has a tax strip (or faux tax strip) with the dates "Fall 1976" and "Spring 1984". Despite the apparent 8 1/2 year age, the back of the bottle still says "This whiskey is 7 years old." I'm not sure if it's a real tax strip b/c I thought that the official ones ended in 1980-81. I'm sure someone remembers...
    -Dan

    Who stole the cork from my breakfast?

  5. #15
    Bourbonian of the Year 2002 and Guru
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    After the tax stamp requirement ended, companies were still required to seal bottles just for tamper-evidence purposes. For those who could not immediately install new capers or other sealing technology, the faux tax stamps were used.

    There is no reason to doubt the stamp's authenticity. It was bottled during the bourbon glut, when it was common for the whiskey's actual age to be significantly greater than the age stated on the standard label for that expression.

  6. #16
    Disciple
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    Oh, I didn't doubt the stamp's authenticity in terms of the dates, just doubted that it was a real tax stamp. I understand that the age stated on the bottle is just the minimum age for bottling. Just thought it was interesting that they would disclose the actual age on the tax stamp.

    The cap is also odd - it sort of looks like a narrow lampshade with lots of ridges. Almost like a mini shot glass - was this the intention?
    -Dan

    Who stole the cork from my breakfast?

  7. #17
    Bourbonian of the Year 2002 and Guru
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sijan
    Just thought it was interesting that they would disclose the actual age on the tax stamp.
    My assumption is that they simply continued all of the practices they had done when the stamps were required.

    The cap is also odd - it sort of looks like a narrow lampshade with lots of ridges. Almost like a mini shot glass - was this the intention?
    Possibly. That's not unusual. The cap on Sauza Hornitos Tequila bottles is designed to be used as a shot glass.

 

 

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