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High West vs Jefferson's Manhattan

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I decided to buy a bottle of Jefferson's Manhattan/Esquire today because the High West, which I love, is 50% more and both claim to be barrel-finished.

To compare:

High West is 74 proof while Jefferson's is 68 proof. Not really that much of a difference.

High West made with Rye, Jefferson's bourbon.

High West barrel conditioned 90 days, Jefferson's no age statement.

High West is clearly darker while the Jefferson's is much lighter and states that it is colored with carrot extract. Not sure if disclosure is required.

High West is clearly sweeter and richer. Jefferson's is tangier and almost taste watered down as if allowed ice to melt in it.

Not sure if you like sweet Manhattans, some of my friends don't, but I prefer the High West and will pay the difference.

(Actually never made one myself because I don't keep vermouth.


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A bottle of the newish Groth wine cask finished bourbon made its way to the International night. 6yo bourbon finished for 9 months. Not bad to be honest although I had a lot of different whisky before and after. Unfortunately it is cut to 90.2 and tastes a bit thin. Better than the Woodford MC Pinot (which admittedly is a low bar). But at mid to high $60's the QPR suffers a good bit. Maybe $40's would be worth a bottle to try. Apparently not MGP as it claimed it was Kentucky bourbon on the bottle.

I think it was noted that apparently since they are having so much difficulty sourcing anything noteworthy they are having to resort to finishes to cover up the base whiskey.


But certainly not surprising that sourced whiskey is getting hard to come by, much less good whiskey!

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I really like the HW Manhattan, so I too bought a bottle of the Jefferson.

I much prefer the HW, though neither seemed better to me than one mixed up fresh, using decent ingredients.

There's only a $3-4 difference between the two in my neck of the woods, so I'd pay the difference for the HW.

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