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  1. #1
    Virtuoso
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    Swaziland, Africa
    Posts
    1,481

    1 bourbon a month

    Hey folks,

    I have a deal with my wife where I can buy 1 bottle of burbon a month for under $30. I am about to spend some time with friends for July 4th so I want to make sure my purchase for this month is top notch. Since I am a relatively new bourbon drinker I like to try something new each month. I would love your suggestions.

    Here is what I have tried so far:

    1792
    Blantons
    Buffalo Trace
    Bulleit
    Eagle Rare
    Elijah Craig 12
    Four Roses Small Batch
    Jim Beam White
    Knob Creek
    Maker's Mark
    Very Old Barton 86
    Wild Turkey 101
    Wild Turkey 80
    Wild Turkey Rare Breed
    WL Weller Special Reserve
    Basil Hayden

    I usually drink my bourbon with ice and have found drinks around 90 proof are a good balance for me (although I certainly don't stick only in that range). Of those I have tried ER10 has been my favorite. I also really like 4R Small Batch. Basil Hayden and EC12 are also on my good list. I like Maker's for its smoothness, but find it lacks any complexity. Knob Creek has been my least favorite (i pick up a strong earthy taste in it) and although 1792 was my gateway bourbon it no longer is a favorite pour.

    To give you an idea of prices around here, with the exception of Rare Breed and Blantons, I can get all of these for under $30 (many for right around $20)

    Thoughts for something to try?

  2. #2
    Disciple
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Location
    Austin, Texas
    Posts
    1,606

    Re: 1 bourbon a month

    Welcome,

    without knowing exactly what is available in your area.....btw, what area are you in?

    I would suggest Wild Turkey rye or a bottled in bond bourbon. If your in an area with a great sellection or have access to dusty bottles there are lots of others to look for.

    Maybe you could describe the style your looking for...ie. lots of wood -or- something with some caramel and a little sweet...

    Also, how about trying the BOTM every month?
    ______________________________

    Jeff Mo.

  3. #3
    Advanced Taster
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    Frankenmuth, Mi.
    Posts
    105

    Re: 1 bourbon a month

    I recently tried Bulleit which I really like - around $24.00 here in Mi. Also, EWSB is a regular pour for me - just under $30 in these parts. A little smoother than the Bulleit, but I like a little bite in my bourbon. Good Luck and Happy 4th!

    Mark

  4. #4
    Enthusiast
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    Texas
    Posts
    261

    Re: 1 bourbon a month

    I'll second the BOTM idea- though some months, the selection will stress your budget.

    In that price range and with your preference for higher proofs (which are two realities you and I have in common) I think Weller Antique, Old Granddad Bottle-In-Bond, and Old Granddad 114 are must-tries. I also agree that WT Rye, though not a bourbon, is worth checking out. All these are great tasting pours and excellent values. They are over 90 proof, but you can dilute down to 90 with a little good spring water if you like. This, of course, will also make your monthly handle-o-happiness last that much longer.

    Benchmark and Old Charter 10 Year Old are also decent options as they are both made by the same distillery who makes ER-10 and may hit some of the same notes at a lower price-point. They are both under 90 proof. If you can find it, the now-discontinued Old Charter 12 is 90 proof and and great tasting bourbon.
    Last edited by OldJack; 06-29-2008 at 16:27.

  5. #5
    Virtuoso
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    Swaziland, Africa
    Posts
    1,481

    Re: 1 bourbon a month

    Of the bourbon of the month's under 30 in these parts (I live in Bowling Green, KY by the way and have acess to most of the bourbons I read about here) I have not tried the following in my price range: Ten High, Classic Cask, Old Charter 12, Old Grand Dad 114, Elijah Craig 18, 4R Single Barrel, Elmer T Lee SB, Old Forester.

    I tend to like a bourbon that has more flavor to it. That being said, I can appreciate a sweeter bourbon (like a Bulleit), or one with more bite (I like Islays if it is a scotch night). A bourbon that is flat and one deminsional is the worst for me (which is how I found the 1792 to be). I am not afraid of buying a bourbon I won't like because my taste is still evolving so I often go for the ones I hear mentioned the most on this forum.

    I am intrigued by EC18 and Weller Antique. The Van Winkle 10 is in my price range, but I hear it is worth $10 more for the 12yo. I might not go with a WT just because in my early tastings I have already tried so many and want to widen my experiance. I have shyed away from Old Forester, Old Charter and Old Granddad because of my percetion of them being cheap. I have been eying Elmer T Lee and EWSB for a while, but have not commited.

    In my mind, the running is down to ORVW10, EC18, ETL, EWSB. Any thoughts on those, or should I try something beyond that. Any other "must try" bourbons you keep on your shelf.

  6. #6
    Disciple
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Location
    Austin, Texas
    Posts
    1,606

    Re: 1 bourbon a month

    IMO, price has little to do with the qaulity of flavor. I would put some of my under $20 retail up against higher priced offerings at any time. Most bourbons come out of the still the same, anyway. For example...Stagg and Old Charter come out of the still vertually identical. Same with AA 80, ETL and Blantons...all from the same mashbill. For bourbon to be bourbon, it all is held up to some very high standards. It is rare for a low quality product to be distributed these days. I am not saying that every bourbon is outstanding....because some are not(old crow), but that is another story.

    So, if you like some of the HH products....give them all a shot. See some of the common threads between them and the differences that aging can make.

    Also, don't forget that distilleries often share products between them. So, without your knowledge, you might have already tried some of the bourbons that you so easily...poo poo.

    My main point is that...bourbon is bourbon...until you try a label, you will never know if you like it. So, don't be afraid of the Tiger!
    Last edited by mozilla; 06-29-2008 at 17:49.
    ______________________________

    Jeff Mo.

  7. #7
    Guru
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Livonia, MI
    Posts
    2,064

    Re: 1 bourbon a month

    kickert,

    First, you need to strike a better bargain with your wife. There will come a time when you will need to work on your bourbon IRA stores. (Just kidding about the bargain, but not the IRA.)

    Anyhow, my taste evolve, and I'm hard pressed to say there are bourbons I don't like. As a general rule, I like bourbon at about 90 proof. To that end, the 90 to 100 proof bourbons are neat, the high alcohol content bourbons are diluted to about 90-100 proof and I enjoy most. Weller Special Reserve and Van Winkle Special Reserve might just average $30/ month in KY or perhaps 2 Weller and 1 Van Winkle could average $30/month over 3 months. I know I'd be happy with that.

    Eagle Rare SB is a nice bourbon and presents well, that too is a good choice.

    Will

  8. #8
    Guru
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    AZ
    Posts
    2,726

    Re: 1 bourbon a month

    For good quality to cost to proof, very hard to be that WT 101, but for something different than what you have had, under $30 or near there, look for the Weller Centennial, Elmer T, Blanton's Silver, or something new on the shelf you have not had.

    That is what I started with and I found lots that I liked

  9. #9
    Apprentice
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    Newport News, VA
    Posts
    39

    Re: 1 bourbon a month

    I am envious of your access to many good bourbons. I am wanting to try some more Van Winkle's and some Weller's. I would go with the 10 yr VW.

  10. #10
    Guru
    Join Date
    Sep 2001
    Location
    Pelham, AL
    Posts
    3,892

    Lightbulb Re: 1 bourbon a month

    For bourbons with "a little more flavor to it", I would recommend the Elmer T. Lee and the Old Grand Dad 114, of the ones mentioned.

    BTW, you have great access to good prices. You have several on your original post that I couldn't get for anywhere near $30, such as Blanton's and Basil Hayden's.

    Tim
    Self-Styled Whisky Connoisseur

 

 

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