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  1. #1
    Advanced Taster
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    Jun 2004
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    Sydney, AUS
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    Best of the BT Line?

    Following on from the WT post above, I was curious about the Buffalo Trace range. It is also something that is unavailable in Oz, so I'm taking advantage of the folks bringing some back. Problem is I can only get 1 (customs etc.)

    I'm really looking at the higher-end stuff, cause I can order the BT and ER10 later on. If tossing up:
    Eagle Rare 17yo
    Rock Hill Farms
    Blantons
    W.L Weller Centennial
    Stagg

    What would be your pick (as a foil to my other request of Elijah Craig 18yo)
    Are all of these readily available in most stores in Calif or SF? (with the exception of the Stagg)

  2. #2
    Guru
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    Pelham, AL
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    Re: Best of the BT Line?

    I love Blanton's, but I believe I would choose the Rock Hill Farms. It is the most luxurious bourbon I have ever tasted.

    Tim

  3. #3
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    Central Arizona (near Prescott), U.S.A.
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    Re: Best of the BT Line?

    Peter,

    I'll take a stab at this one because most of our truly knowledgeable folks are now at the Bourbon Festival, where they are undoubtedly widening the knowledge gap between us at this very moment. I can see a couple of perspectives from which to try to answer your question.

    One is based on pure enjoyment. The other takes into account the relative rarity of each bottling. For example, someone might rank Stagg number two in terms of pure enjoyment, but it is so rare that the same person might choose to buy it when available, not knowing whether the opportunity will be repeated.

    Of your five candidates, Eagle Rare 17 y/o is the only one I have not tried. (I'm saving a bottle to open for some special occasion, perhaps the 2004 atumnal equinox. <g>) If I were to substitute the 10 y/o, I would insert it at number 3 on both lists, below. I can hardly imagine that the 17 y/o would rank lower than the 10 y/o.

    Of the other four, here are my rankings, first based on pure enjoyment (your mileage may vary), second based on need to acquire at any opportunity.

    Enjoyment

    1. Rock Hill Farms
    2. Stagg (most SB'ers would rank this one ahead of RHF)
    3. Blanton's (a large gap between this and no. 2 on my list; however, if you value subtlety over oomph, you might rank this one no. 1)
    4. Weller Centennial (an even larger gap between this and no. 3; not even the best wheat-recipe bourbon from BT, IMO)

    Acquire

    1. Stagg (all but unavailable within a few weeks after each year's release)
    2. Rock Hill Farms (available from numerous sources most of the time in the USA)
    3. Blanton's (widely available)
    4. Weller Centennial (fairly widely available)

    When I still lived in SoCal, I found nos. 2, 3 &amp; 4 on the shelf at Hi-Time in Costa Mesa most of the time. I seldom made the trek to Wine and Liquor Depot in Van Nuys, so I don't recall what they normally stocked. I think I bought Blanton's there one time. (And my son bought me Hirsch 20 y/o there a couple of Christmases ago.) I know of no other outlets in the area that rival these two for selection. However, the many locations of the Beverages and More chain may be worth a look. Beverage Warehouse in Culver City is also worth a look, if it's not too far out of the way. (With a definite list in hand, it's probably better to phone first in each case.)

    I hope you enjoy whatever choice you make.

    Yours truly,
    Dave Morefield

  4. #4
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    Re: Best of the BT Line?

    Evening Pete,

    That's a good list. I'm sure you would be pleased with any of them. I have tasted them all and currently have a bottle of each in my cabinet.

    Since you asked for just the one I recommend Rock Hill Farms. Not only is it the equal of the others but its one that you won't encounter very often as it is easily the most overlooked and underrated of the lot.

    Regards,
    Squire

  5. #5
    Advanced Taster
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    Jun 2004
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    Re: Best of the BT Line?

    Thanks for the feedback folks. I was wondering why there was a dropoff of posts in the last day or so.

    To be honest The RHF was what I was looking at primarily. It seems to get a great rap on the forums. (with the exception of one post of Marvin's off memory), the flavour profile described sounds like it'd be up my alley, and a good spice/fruit alternative to the oak/wood flavour of the EC18.
    The fact that it's not often focussed upon is what I'm after, as I'd like something you wouldn't get, even if I ordered them from Binny's. ER10 Weller12 and BT seem to be the value bourbons out there.

    Do i take it that RHF would be freely available, even to bourbon novices in a strange land like my parents?


  6. #6
    Enthusiast
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    Sep 2004
    Location
    Burlington VT, USA
    Posts
    336

    Re: Best of the BT Line?

    Our selection in Vermont is pretty terrible, but even we can get Rock Hill Farms via special order through our Department of Liquor Control. In fact, I am going to be ordering a bottle today to give it a go.

  7. #7
    Advanced Taster
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    Jun 2004
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    109

    Re: Best of the BT Line?

    Trust me. ANYWHERE on the continental United States in miles better than over here. Jim Beam White is considered a delicacy here by many people...

    I'd also like to know, for future international Binny's purchases, how the 3 'cheap' Buffalo Trace bottlings differ in taste, and what is generally preferred:

    Buffalo Trace
    Eagle Rare 101
    Eagle Rare SB

    I can say that I want a bottle of Buffalo Trace just by virtue of the bottle. I don't think I've seen a more schmick design before. (maybe Kentucky Spirit...)

    Let me know how the RHF's goes. Seems to be well regarded here.

  8. #8

    Re: Best of the BT Line?

    I've not tried the Eagle Rare 10yo 101, but there's nothing 'cheap' about either the BT or ERSB 10yo, making them great values for the money.
    The Buffalo Trace has more of a manly rye quality, yet has pleasant sweetness that balances it nicely. The ERSB is almost Scotch-like (in a good sense -- though some here would call that an oxymoron) -- lighter-bodied and almost delicate at entry, then the rye spiciness and other flavors (honey, florals) just burst on the mid-palate. Neither is 'woody' in the sense of over-oaked. There's more ripeness, less dryness.


  9. #9
    Guru
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    Central Arizona (near Prescott), U.S.A.
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    4,235

    Re: Best of the BT Line?

    Your post inspired me to open the 1.75 l. of ER 101 that I picked up in Houston recently. (What's with that plastic insert in the neck, anyway? It makes the bourbon frothy as it first hits the glass.)

    I suspect that if I were offered BT, ERSB and ER101 in a blind tasting, I would have no idea which is which. (I just might pick out the ERSB based on its silky, grape-like mouthfeel.)

    That said, the ER 101 seems to have the same sophistication (I think of it as "brandy-like" not "scotch-like") as the ERSB, but with a more muscular presentation, more reminiscent of molasses than grapes. At the same time, it is richer and smoother than I recall the BT.

    The funny thing is, every time I drink any one of these three, I find myself thinking that I would be happy to drink only that bottling for the rest of my life, if need be.

    In short, I wouldn't worry too much about which one you end up with. If you have no choice but to select one at a time, I'd go in the following order:

    1. ERSB
    2. ER 101
    3. BT

    Yours truly,
    Dave Morefield

  10. #10
    Taster
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    Jul 2004
    Location
    Annapolis, MD
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    60

    Re: Best of the BT Line?

    [SNIP]What would be your pick

    Of stuff generally available, I'd go with the Rock Hill Farms.

 

 

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