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  1. #1
    Novice
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Location
    Santa Clara, CA
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    20

    Pappy van Winkle

    Hi I'm brand new here, and I've been casually trying to be a whiskey guy for a couple of years. My favorite (affordable) bourbon is Wild Turkey 101, but I had a question about something else. My dad got some "Pappy Van Winkle’s Family Reserve 20 Year-Old" for a present recently. He doesn't like bourbon (weird premium tequila fetish) so he just gave me the bottle, and I haven't tried it yet. I've never heard of the brand, or in fact of any bourbon that's aged 20 years.

    So finally the question: Is this stuff respected in the forums? My whiskey knowledge is very financially sensitive, particularly with bourbons, and I wanted to get opinions on this stuff.

  2. #2
    Guru
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    May 2005
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    Eastern Pennsylvania
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    2,781

    Re: Pappy van Winkle

    Your dad, IMO, gave you a very desirable and expensive bottle of bourbon. It sells for between $70 and $110 a bottle and contains Stitzel-Weller wheated bourbon which is gracefully aged for 20 years. Pappy 20 is personally in my top 5 bourbons and I think you have done well to get a bottle. Enjoy.
    Joe
    Colonel Joseph B. "Bourbon Joe" Koch

    "Bourbon.....It's cheaper than therapy!!"

  3. #3
    Guru
    Join Date
    May 2002
    Location
    Central Arizona (near Prescott), U.S.A.
    Posts
    4,235

    Re: Pappy van Winkle

    N.C.,

    Welcome! You'll find all the opinions you'll ever need here.

    I'll echo what Bourbon Joe said, with a twist.

    If you are tempted to sell your bottle of Pappy 20 y/o ("this stuff", you called it? ) now, don't -- for several reasons.

    Because of the limited supply of bourbon from the now-defunct S-W distillery, the dollar value of your bottle is almost certain to appreciate faster than the rate of inflation.

    If you part with it now, you may never get another chance to taste it.

    A few years in the future your financial situation may be very different than it is now, and even at its appreciated value you may wish to drink it.

    It's a keepsake, even an heirloom, save for the fact that its purpose is to be consumed.

    If you sell it, it may end up in a collection in some faraway land, never to be consumed as its maker intended.

    Of course in the final analysis it's yours, and you can do whatever you want with it. I suggest only that you be thoughtful about it.

    BTW, it's entirely possible that you will like the 15 y/o version better. Some folks here do. Even so, a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity is not to be taken lightly.

    Yours truly,
    Dave Morefield
    Yours truly,
    Dave Morefield

    Dog Lover, Euphonium Player, Campfire Guitarist, Marksman,

  4. #4
    Virtuoso
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Location
    Texas
    Posts
    1,024

    Re: Pappy van Winkle

    Quote Originally Posted by No Chaser View Post
    He doesn't like bourbon (weird premium tequila fetish)..
    I'm the opposite, I recently made a run (north) for the border and switched from premium tequilas to bourbon as my favorite distilled spirit, very easy on the wallet too.

    The Pappy 20 is a very coveted and sought after bourbon, and you're very lucky to have it.

    In your attempts to 'be a whiskey guy', have you tried any of the wheated bourbons (ones made with a portion of wheat instead of the usual rye)? In the 'affordable' camp of wheated bourbons I'd recommend Weller Antique 107, and for a little more money but still very affordable I'd recommend picking up an Old Rip Van Winkle 10yo 107 proof (if you happen across one, they are kindof rare). Another wheated one that is VERY affordable (usually around $12-15 per bottle) is Old Fitzgerald Bottled In Bond 100 proof. The Pappy 20 you have is of course also a wheated bourbon and purported to be one of the very best ever (I've yet to try it, but I do have an unopened bottle). My point is that if you haven't tried any of the wheated bourbons, they just may end up tickling your fancy, I know they do mine. I tend to enjoy the higher proofs (100 and above), so that's what I would recommend.

    Cheers and welcome to SB,
    Gus

  5. #5
    Novice
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Location
    Santa Clara, CA
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    20

    Re: Pappy van Winkle

    Yeah, unfortunately my choices have been extremely limited, and I've also been trying to learn scotches as well, all on a bad budget, so I've only gone through well-known stuff like Maker's Mark, Woodford Reserves, Jim Beam (euch never again), and other grocery store stuff. I'm actually not sure where rye enters the equation and where it doesn't, except in the Wild Turkeys, as they are clearly labeled in original and rye variants.

    Anyway we've already opened the bottle since a scotch fanatic was over and we were all arguing about the relative merits of our different alcohol types. The scotch guy and my tequila dad loved it and so did I. The nose was very rich caramel for me, and we all agreed that the finish was THE LONGEST that we'd ever experienced in ANYTHING. It wouldn't stop morphing into something different, with orange and woods interlacing between god-knows-what. Suffice it to say that it's probably the single best drink I've ever consumed in my life up to this point. The scotch guy liked it as much as the fancy double-barrel stuff he drinks!

    Anyway thanks for the information, I'll be sure to post here in the future and maybe start lurking too.

  6. #6
    Guru
    Join Date
    Sep 2001
    Location
    Pelham, AL
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    3,889

    Lightbulb Re: Pappy van Winkle

    In my opinion, your bottle of Pappy 20 is one to put on your top shelf and take of sparingly over a period of years, e.g., only for the most special occasions or most revered guests. That's what I would do, anyway.

    Tim
    Self-Styled Whisky Connoisseur

  7. #7
    Connoisseur
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Location
    Northford, CT
    Posts
    784

    Re: Pappy van Winkle

    No Chaser,

    Do not listen to my fellow posters, they are having a little fun with you. Despite what they have written, this Popeye Ban Vinkle stuff is terrible, it'll burn a hole right through your stomach. This is now an unfortunate burden for you to bare, especially given the fact that if not properly disposed of this violent material can cause irreparable damage to the ecosystem that surrounds you within a 50 mile radius.

    Here's what to do. It just so happens that I work in the hazardous waste field. Do yourself, your family, your neighbors and your fellow townsmen a big favor and send the bottle, with contents fully intact, to me and I will properly dispose of this unsavory and hazardous liquid. PM me and will gladly reply with my address.

    You will thank me later.

    Your friend,

    Nick



  8. #8
    Novice
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Location
    Santa Clara, CA
    Posts
    20

    Re: Pappy van Winkle

    Oh boy, I'm sold.

    No, yeah, it's damned fine stuff, almost a different kind of alcohol altogether in comparison to my usual pours.

  9. #9
    Connoisseur
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Location
    Northford, CT
    Posts
    784

    Re: Pappy van Winkle

    Quote Originally Posted by No Chaser View Post
    Oh boy, I'm sold.

    No, yeah, it's damned fine stuff, almost a different kind of alcohol altogether in comparison to my usual pours.

    Damn it all, I said don't open it.


    It's great bourbon. Enjoy.

  10. #10
    Guru
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    Dec 2006
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    Wash DC Metro
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    2,409

    Re: Pappy van Winkle

    Quote Originally Posted by No Chaser View Post
    Oh boy, I'm sold.

    No, yeah, it's damned fine stuff, almost a different kind of alcohol altogether in comparison to my usual pours.
    NC,

    If you like the 20 year that much...you're certain to like or love the 15 year. It's a fantastic pour and easier on the wallet. It can be found for around $40 a bottle depending on where you live and availability. Since you are boxed into a buget, I would second the suggestion that you seek out and try Weller Antique 107. For around $20, it's a really great bourbon and under priced in my opinion. And again, I would agree with the suggestion of ORVW 10/107. If you get serious about drinking bourbon, you might as well get a second job now....you're gonna need the extra $$.
    “Giving money and power to government is like giving whiskey and car keys to teenage boys.” - P.J. O’Rourke
    Greg's "bourbondork" blog

 

 

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