I have had a few "hand picked" bottles over the past year. With the Binny's Buffalo Trace, I had nothing to compare it to, as I had never had BT in its "not hand picked" format. With the Hi Times ETL, I had a current ETL as well as some older black label stuff to compare it to, and the Hi Times version blew them both away. So far, I guess I am better off for having the special bottles, than not.