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  1. #1

    Where\'s my IW Harper?

    Hey all .... what Happened to I.W. Harper? I can't find it in PA or VA.

    Was it discontinued?

  2. #2
    Enthusiast
    Join Date
    Mar 2004
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    virginia
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    441

    Re: Where\'s my IW Harper?

    A search here will yield more details, but the painful truth is that, aside from old stock, you can't get it in the US anymore.

    If it weren't for Tim/TNbourbon, this IW Harper fan would be in a sad state!

  3. #3

    Re: Where\'s my IW Harper?

    That is very sad ...... is there any other bourbon that is comparable? IW Harper was always something of a family hunting camp tradition. Is there any way to get my hands on some of the remaining stock?

  4. #4
    Bourbonian of the Year 2002 and Guru
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    Sep 1999
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    Re: Where\'s my IW Harper?

    How long has it been since you bought any? Because I. W. Harper has been generally out of U.S. distribution for many years.

    The reason is because it became a very successful and profitable brand in Japan while it was still kind-of a nothing brand here, so people were gray-market exporting it. "Gray market" exporting typically exploits a situation where something is cheap in one country and expensive in another, so one can legitimately buy the product in the cheap country, ship it to the expensive country, and sell it there for a considerable profit. This undercuts the producer's profits but is generally not illegal, so the producer's only solution is to make it more costly in the cheap country or just withdraw it from distribution there, which is what was done with I.W. Harper.

    The special 15-year-old edition of Harper, currently being discussed elsewhere on this board, was generally available in the US when it was introduced more than a decade ago, but now is only available as leftover retail stock. The standard version has been spotted in a few US markets, typically control states such as Virginia, where the producer didn't want to give up the listing.

    Having a certain brand for a certain event has a lot of sentimental value, but if you just want a whiskey that tastes the same, look for Old Charter.

  5. #5
    Enthusiast
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    Mar 2004
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    Re: Where\'s my IW Harper?

    Having a certain brand for a certain event has a lot of sentimental value, but if you just want a whiskey that tastes the same, look for Old Charter.
    Chuck took the words right out of my mouth! I was going to suggest OC 8 year, although I find IW Harper "livelier" with a hint of what I call "cream soda" on the back of the tongue. Someone else described that flavor as "mash vanilla," which is certainly much cooler as a bourbon flavor descriptor. I feel like those components of IWH are absent in OC 8 year, presumably due to aging. Then again, I never did a blind side-by-side, which is always humbling and could prove my palate wrong!

 

 

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