Greetings, all! I'm somewhat new to the world of whisk(e)y in general, and to bourbon in particular. I've been lurking on the boards for a week or two trying to absorb some knowledge, and now I'm looking for some suggestions on what additional bourbons I should try.
Here is what I have in my stash or have had at some time:
<ul type="square"> [*]Knob Creek - My first "premium" bourbon, I like the vanilla nose and the smoothness. [*]Maker's Mark - Eh. It's ok. I have friends that love it. I've still got a 375 mL bottle that I haven't finished, simply because I don't drink that often. [*]Basil Hayden's - Cool bottle, but I'm not a big fan of the contents. Wish I'd read the boards here before purchasing, as it seems others feel the same way.[*]Elijah Craig 12yo - This is probably my favorite to date. And it's cheap enough to drink as an "everyday" bourbon. Only downside is that the state determines availability for all liquor in Vermont, so I have to special order this through their website.[*]Evan Williams Single Barrel (I believe 1993, not 100% sure) - I've seen raves of EWSB on these boards, but for me, the taste of charcoal dominates everything else - I have yet to find any other flavor in this bottle. Was a gift from the in-laws.[*]Jim Beam Black - Good, I (gasp) use this to mix with (whiskey sours, manhattan, and bourbon & coke). Seems a good value for the price, but I prefer the EC12 for drinking neat.[*]Jim Beam White - Staple. Used for mixing when guests are over. I also have some friends who PREFER the JB White either on the rocks or *shudder* for shots.[/list]
After reading the boards here, I compiled a list of "must try" bourbons. Here are the items that are available in-state:
<ul type="square">[*]Harper Gold Medal 15yo - $28[*]Ancient Ancient Age - $12[*]Booker's - $48[*]Elijah Craig 18yo (single barrel) - $33[*]Rock Hill Farms - $38[*]Wild Turkey Rare Breed - $31[*]Eagle Rare Single Barrel - $20 (Eagle Rare is $16)[/list]
In addition to these, there are several bourbons listed on the state page that I have heard no mention of here, and they look interesting:
<ul type="square">[*]Very Very Old Fitzgerald - $27[*]Old Charter Proprietor's Reserve - $28[/list]
Very few of these items are "in stock" at the state liquor stores, and must be special ordered. I know packaging is not important (think "Basil Hayden's), but I like to be able to look at a bottle before I buy it. So, I'm doing the next best thing - asking a bunch of folks who have hopefully seen (and even better, tasted) these bourbons, and can point me in the right direction!