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Seasick Sailor

Confess Your Unpopular Bourbon Opinion

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Jazzhead

I don't much care for Heaven Hill bourbon,  and there are a number of craft bourbons that are pretty doggone good.   

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Saul_cooperstein

I like the secondary market 

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Clueby
39 minutes ago, jshleffar said:

Blanton's is meh... So is Elmer (yet i love RHF)... ORVW is barely better than OWA... MM tastes like varnish and sharpie pen... I wouldnt pay 25 dollars for a bottle of OF 1920... OE 7 BP is the most overrated release in a long time.

Some days I agree with most of that.  Blanton's can be boring at times but other times I find it very elegant.  Elmer has more bottle/barrel variance.  RHF is my favorite of the US MB2.  I often prefer OWA to ORVW.  I don't think many people could pick them apart in a blind SBS as to which one is "better".  Probably notice a slight difference.  Same with VW12 and W12.  OF1920 however is the best OF bottle I've tried.  I also really like OE7BP but do find the $40 retail is pushing its value a tad.  At the prices I've seen it lately ($65+) its an easy pass.

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Bourserker

My confession, although it won't likely be a surprise to most, is that I do not care for W12, Lot B or ORVW.  Don't know what it is but these just don't trip my trigger.  I've also had some issues with OWA.  I used to like OWA, but the recent ones I've had taste like varnish to me.  Another thing I don't get about W12 and Lot B is I have done side by sides on those multiple times, and they are literally almost identical to my taste buds.  So the massive upcharge for Lot B makes zero sense to me.  

 

Also, I think PVW 20 is good, but like maybe $80 to $100 good...no way no how is it anywhere near worth the secondary market prices.  Not sure if that is really much of a confession...I guess the confession is that I have PVW 20 and I'm just kinda like "meh". 

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Steven C
On 2/10/2019 at 8:48 AM, AndyD said:

Beam signature 12 is the exact

template that bourbon should smell and taste like.

Based on Andy's review and Vosgar's follow-up, I ventured out to find a bottle of this juice today and I'm enjoying a pour now. It really is fantastic. And I think your description here is spot on as well: it's just classic bourbon flavor, straight down the line, leaning sweet...and so much vanilla.  Going to make a dent in this bottle tonight for sure.

Edited by Steven C

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Gillman

I don't like old bourbon. Past six years is pushing it. 

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Soberiquet
11 hours ago, ThirstyinOhio said:

I don't believe that they have ever sourced bourbon from MGP, only rye which I don't have that many of.

Ah, I was definitely thinking of the rye. Thanks for the clarification.

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AndyD
1 hour ago, Steven C said:

Based on Andy's review and Vosgar's follow-up, I ventured out to find a bottle of this juice today and I'm enjoying a pour now. It really is fantastic. And I think your description here is spot on as well: it's just classic bourbon flavor, straight down the line, leaning sweet...and so much vanilla.  Going to make a dent in this bottle tonight for sure.

 One of the few bottles on distiller that deserves the rating.

 

waiting for the next road trip and try to find that next honey pot with another case on the shelf......

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PowderKeg

Try as I might, I just can't get excited about anything Wild Turkey.  So far it's all been pretty much meh, or a hot mess.  Not a big 'ol gnarly hot mess, but nothing that gets me to want more.

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cdcdguy

I have never been impressed with Angels Envy. Not even if it was cheaper. I love wheated but do not like Larceny. Unlike many I think Weller 107 and 12 are really good. Beam Distiller's Cut. Might be the only the only one here that doesn't like it.

 

I much prefer cheaper bourbons. Here is my short list that I think are great.

 

Cabin Still, JTS BIB, HH 90 proof 6, VOBBIB, ETBIB, EWBIB.

 

Biggest  surprise last week. Finally got a bottle of the new Old Ezra7. I loved the old cheaper one. I was SURE I was going to be dissapointed. I think it's quite good.

 

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smokinjoe
16 minutes ago, cdcdguy said:

Unlike many I think Weller 107... are really good.

 

I think this opinion is not unpopular?

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Carnagusfarnbuckler
1 hour ago, cdcdguy said:

I have never been impressed with Angels Envy. Not even if it was cheaper. I love wheated but do not like Larceny. Unlike many I think Weller 107 and 12 are really good. Beam Distiller's Cut. Might be the only the only one here that doesn't like it.

 

I much prefer cheaper bourbons. Here is my short list that I think are great.

 

Cabin Still, JTS BIB, HH 90 proof 6, VOBBIB, ETBIB, EWBIB.

 

Biggest  surprise last week. Finally got a bottle of the new Old Ezra7. I loved the old cheaper one. I was SURE I was going to be dissapointed. I think it's quite good.

 

I like your whole list even the Cabin Still.  I think it is a very easy drinker for 10 bucks.

 

Edited by Carnagusfarnbuckler

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Harry in WashDC
On 2/9/2019 at 10:03 AM, 0895 said:

I’m not ashamed to say that sometimes, some years, certain releases of BTAC are a letdown / just not great to me. 

Same for certain Van Winkles

 

 (nervously ducks) :(.

I can relate.  Early 2000s, I bought Lot B monthly (finish a bottle, go buy a replacement - mindlessly thinking it'd be here forever) but could never get into the older VW expressions - I've never been an oak fan, and even today 10 years (HMcK BIB) is about my upper limit (WT Masters Collection excepted).  By 2006 when the VWs became scarce and expensive, I stopped buying Lot B.   The few times I've tasted the current releases, I have been disappointed.  The GTS annual offerings are also excepted from my "Pass" list but only when they fall in my lap.

 

An observation - I sort of skipped this thread as I've posted ad nauseum on SB about what I would pass on even in Hell - Old Crow - but a read-through disclosed, yet again, that we have a range of palates represented here on SB; posters here who like/dislike some things I like/dislike OR dislike/like have shown up consistently on other threads agreeing or disagreeing with my tastes.

 

That's not surprising, but it does mean bourbon has no "right" answer.  Rather, bourbon IS the answer.

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Tony Santana

From reading this thread, I guess it's not that much of an unpopular decision, but I find WSR incredibly boring.  MM blows it out of the water.

 

4R barrel picks are going downhill, and I wouldn't think of buying F or Q yeasts anymore.

 

Michters 10 year is massively overrated.  So is MWND.

 

The BTAC line isn't as good as it used to be (although I'll still gladly buy it at retail).

 

Glassware isn't that important.  I usually use a Glencairn, but there's not much difference between that and a Norlan glass or a rocks glass.

 

I add water to just about everything over about 90 poof now (although I used to drink primarily neat).  And I usually just use some filtered tap water.  Just splashing a little in and not using an eyedropper.

 

I haven't had every Orphan Barrel release, but the ones I've had have been enjoyable (even Gifted Horse) and worth the money.

 

Current ECBP isn't nearly as good as the distillate in the older, squatter bottles.

 

Bakers is really good.

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EarthQuake
30 minutes ago, Tony Santana said:

FR barrel picks are going downhill, and I wouldn't think of buying F or Q yeasts anymore.

 

I've read similar a few times. Personally, I've only started buying FR picks in the last year or so, and the worst of them has been very good, with the better ones being as good or better than most LE unicorns. I think I would say the best couple I've had (OBSK and OESQ) have been better than GTS, and I really, really like GTS.

 

So, I'm not saying you're wrong, but wow, if this is downhill I sure would love to taste these barrel picks when they were in their prime. Also it would be interesting to hear how recent you're talking about with going downhill. I think I've ended up with some bottles from 2015/16, so I suppose 2018/19 could show more of a degradation in quality?

Edited by EarthQuake
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Tony Santana
8 hours ago, EarthQuake said:

I've read similar a few times. Personally, I've only started buying FR picks in the last year or so, and the worst of them has been very good, with the better ones being as good or better than most LE unicorns. I think I would say the best couple I've had (OBSK and OESQ) have been better than GTS, and I really, really like GTS.

 

So, I'm not saying you're wrong, but wow, if this is downhill I sure would love to taste these barrel picks when they were in their prime. Also it would be interesting to hear how recent you're talking about with going downhill. I think I've ended up with some bottles from 2015/16, so I suppose 2018/19 could show more of a degradation in quality?

I went on a real FR kick roughly 3 years ago, maybe 4.  Acquired all 10 recipes, and all were over 10 years old, several in the 12-13 year range (not that age is always a signifier of quality).  All good quality.  I'll admit it's a relatively small sample size, but the bottles I've tried in the last year or so have been decidedly blah, and all clocking in at less than 10 years in age.  And I've rarely seen O or K yeasts, although I admit I live in an area where we don't see a lot of FR store picks.

Edited by Tony Santana

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flahute
15 hours ago, EarthQuake said:

I've read similar a few times. Personally, I've only started buying FR picks in the last year or so, and the worst of them has been very good, with the better ones being as good or better than most LE unicorns. I think I would say the best couple I've had (OBSK and OESQ) have been better than GTS, and I really, really like GTS.

 

So, I'm not saying you're wrong, but wow, if this is downhill I sure would love to taste these barrel picks when they were in their prime. Also it would be interesting to hear how recent you're talking about with going downhill. I think I've ended up with some bottles from 2015/16, so I suppose 2018/19 could show more of a degradation in quality?

As someone who's done a lot of 4R picks, I can tell you what it's like now versus 4-5 years ago.

Back then, you would have all ten recipes to choose from and it would be a hard choice because most of the barrels were great. There would be 1-3 that you could eliminate quickly but it would be a tough deliberation on the rest. Usually, you'd end up leaving with more than one barrel.

Now, you tend to get 7 barrels max. (Some special accounts will get more and you might see that on social media but it's not the norm). And they are all younger than before. Of those seven you can eliminate 3-4 pretty quickly. Of the remaining ones there may be one clear cut winner but sometimes they are just good but not great.

So, from you perspective as a buyer right now, you are managing to find the few of the really good ones which means that you have good pickers in your area.

I'm getting good ones through my group. The only local picks being done by stores right now are mediocre.

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BigRich
As someone who's done a lot of 4R picks, I can tell you what it's like now versus 4-5 years ago.
Back then, you would have all ten recipes to choose from and it would be a hard choice because most of the barrels were great. There would be 1-3 that you could eliminate quickly but it would be a tough deliberation on the rest. Usually, you'd end up leaving with more than one barrel.
Now, you tend to get 7 barrels max. (Some special accounts will get more and you might see that on social media but it's not the norm). And they are all younger than before. Of those seven you can eliminate 3-4 pretty quickly. Of the remaining ones there may be one clear cut winner but sometimes they are just good but not great.
So, from you perspective as a buyer right now, you are managing to find the few of the really good ones which means that you have good pickers in your area.
I'm getting good ones through my group. The only local picks being done by stores right now are mediocre.

Steve,

My experience from a few years back is pretty consistent with yours. Also, most of the private selections that I’ve run across recently I would also consider mediocre by comparison. If they were $45-$50 then I would say good hit in the $65+ range mediocre is appropriate.

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flahute
1 hour ago, BigRich said:


Steve,

My experience from a few years back is pretty consistent with yours. Also, most of the private selections that I’ve run across recently I would also consider mediocre by comparison. If they were $45-$50 then I would say good hit in the $65+ range mediocre is appropriate.

You make an excellent point that I neglected - quality and age is mostly down, but prices are way up. The value isn't there like it used to be.

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Phil T

I decided to post my opinions before I read through this thread. I didn't want anything to influence my opinions. 

 

---Sazerac's distilleries:: I really don't like either one of the BT rye based recipes. Although I have had a few really nice single barrels.

Weller products are hit or miss. I have never had a W12 that I thought was decent.  Regular WSR and OWA are a hit or miss proposition. Although,  I do have a decent collection of OWA single barrels,  most are very stellar.

Sazerac rye, the last bottle I opened was almost undrinkable. Very young and astringent. 

And the Barton whiskeys,  too hit or miss to buy them with any frequency. 

 

---Heaven Hill:: I am a serious fan of HMBIB and HHBIB. Any time, in any give week, I will be drinking one of these. Larceny is just ok, but I will buy it at a super price. Pikesville is something that I don't buy very often, but it the best rye I have had in awhile. Also, I really like MC also.

 

---Maker's Mark:: although I rarely buy regular MM, I have not had a bottle of MMPS that I didn't really enjoy. Some of the best wheaters I have put to my lips.

 

---Jim Beam::they don't put anything in a bottle that I like. I have tried them all, multiple times, over and over.  Sorry, no likey.

 

---Four Roses :: my most favorite distillery.  JR was magic. My favorite recipes : OBSV,  OBSK,  OESO. I have a really nice collection of 10+ yrs single barrels of these recipes. Although, I have a hard time talking myself into drinking them because I feel they are never to be repeated.

 

---Wild Turkey:: I have had some really good 101s lately. At $20 a bottle, that pleases me. I have not tried the last couple of Rare Breed iterations, so no comment. 

 

---Woodford or Old Forrester:: I have found them to be too expensive for what they are, so I don't buy them. However, free at a party, I'm in.

 

I can't remember the last time I bought anything from a NDP or craft distillery,  because they are generally very over priced.

 

If I think of anything new, I will edit and post.

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smokinjoe

I’ve thought of a few to add to my list:

Outside of being an interesting little experiment that might help determine my bourbon taste preference on any given day, I don’t put much else into the value of side-by-side blind tastings.  They certainly aren’t the end all/be all in guiding me through my bourbon journey, as many suggest they are.  They simply are a snap shot or data point of taste at the time you do them, and with the myriad of variables that effects one’s palate, are subject to continuous change.  And this brings me to my second confession:

There IS more that matters to me than what is in the bottle.  My experience with a whiskey is heightened by the design of the bottle.  I enjoy a good looking label.  I don’t mind the fanciful story.  The sound of the cork being removed.  The feel of the bottle, whether it be a heavy glass, an odd shape, or the comfort of a plain and simple square shaped EW/JD/JB type bottle.  I know that I really like Blanton’s.  A lot.  And, I also know that some of that is because of the beautiful bottle and that damn cool horsey cork...And at times, I’ll gladly pay more for those extra things outside of what’s inside.  

 

Edited by smokinjoe
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afmadd

I don't like rye. 

 

Any opinion about Blanton's seems to be unpopular.  About half the time, I agree with Clueby that it is kind of boring.  The other half, I prefer it to anything else in my cabinet by a wide margin.

 

I've only had one pour of 1920, but I didn't like it.  Tasted fake.

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BadDayBlack
11 minutes ago, afmadd said:

I don't like rye. 

 

Any opinion about Blanton's seems to be unpopular.  About half the time, I agree with Clueby that it is kind of boring.  The other half, I prefer it to anything else in my cabinet by a wide margin.

 

I've only had one pour of 1920, but I didn't like it.  Tasted fake.

"Fake" or "artificial" is how I describe it as well. 

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lcpfratn
I’ve thought of a few to add to my list:
Outside of being an interesting little experiment that might help determine my bourbon taste preference on any given day, I don’t put much else into the value of side-by-side blind tastings.  They certainly aren’t the end all/be all in guiding me through my bourbon journey, as many suggest they are.  They simply are a snap shot or data point of taste at the time you do them, and with the myriad of variables that effects one’s palate, are subject to continuous change.  And this brings me to my second confession:
There IS more that matters to me than what is in the bottle.  My experience with a whiskey is heightened by the design of the bottle.  I enjoy a good looking label.  I don’t mind the fanciful story.  The sound of the cork being removed.  The feel of the bottle, whether it be a heavy glass, an odd shape, or the comfort of a plain and simple square shaped EW/JD/JB type bottle.  I know that I really like Blanton’s.  A lot.  And, I also know that some of that is because of the beautiful bottle and than damn cool horsey cork...And at times, I’ll gladly pay more for those extra things outside of what’s inside.  
 

Spoken like a true salesman! I agree with a lot of what you’re saying though. Cheers Joe!

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kevinbrink
2 hours ago, smokinjoe said:

I’ve thought of a few to add to my list:

Outside of being an interesting little experiment that might help determine my bourbon taste preference on any given day, I don’t put much else into the value of side-by-side blind tastings.  They certainly aren’t the end all/be all in guiding me through my bourbon journey, as many suggest they are.  They simply are a snap shot or data point of taste at the time you do them, and with the myriad of variables that effects one’s palate, are subject to continuous change.  And this brings me to my second confession:

There IS more that matters to me than what is in the bottle.  My experience with a whiskey is heightened by the design of the bottle.  I enjoy a good looking label.  I don’t mind the fanciful story.  The sound of the cork being removed.  The feel of the bottle, whether it be a heavy glass, an odd shape, or the comfort of a plain and simple square shaped EW/JD/JB type bottle.  I know that I really like Blanton’s.  A lot.  And, I also know that some of that is because of the beautiful bottle and than damn cool horsey cork...And at times, I’ll gladly pay more for those extra things outside of what’s inside.  

 

Agree very much with all of this.

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