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alcoholica

How does barrel entry proof affect your bourbon?

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Harry in WashDC

Lots of really good grounded opinions and objective observations (Paddy, Squire, etc.) above.  My two cents --

 

"Proof: the Science of Booze" (2014) by Adam Rogers in paperback for about $11 will tell you more than the average human, but NOT the average bourbon geek, wants to know about "proof".

 

I have another dozen books RE: the art and science of distilling dating back to 1975 I could list.  To save you time reading them all, lemme say this about that --

 

At a Whisky Fest in Wash DC a few years ago, Jimmy Russell poured a just-released Masters Keep 17 YR 86.8 proof for me while Eddie answered my questions.  The "low" proof of the 17 YR had been an issue in the popular press.  Both Jimmy and Eddie spent five or so minutes talking to me and three or four others standing there about their experience with low entry+low exit being preferable to high entry+whatever exit & water for preserving flavors.  The booth next to theirs was Whistle Pig.  Dave Pickerell and I shared some college experiences (but not at the same time-I am/was older) and we compared notes on those experiences as we'd done on a couple of prior meetings.  After talking about the ArmyNavy Game for that year (army WON!!), our conversation got around to bourbon (SURPRISE!!!).  He confirmed pretty much what the Russells said - lower entry is perferable to lower exit when preservation of complex, balanced flavors is the goal.

 

Who am I to argue or disagree?

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alcoholica
1 hour ago, flahute said:

 

Gotta say I don’t like your attitude here. Lots of responses trying to help and understand your question and now you spit in their face?

 

Well, I'm sorry if you are offended and/or a snowflake about it. You regurgitated the same answers as others and didn't read followup posts. Someone beat you to your thought, not my fault. No need to be a keyboard warrior about it. 

 

1 hour ago, Paddy said:

Well then... what Squire said! 

 

Seriously, it may already be clear, but in an effort to simplify... most of us are on board, but just not fully understanding the 'more flavor' part of the original question.  It's a great topic, and I do think that interest is always high when it comes to things near and dear to our heart, such as bourbon! 

 

The only thing I'll add is that the more flavor vs less flavor theory (based on the amount of alcohol in the barrel) doesn't really seem to be a definable one.  The components assembled to 'make flavor' are all there in equal parts (the barrel only hold 55 gallons), so the only non-constant is the amount of water (which is obviously not adding any initial flavor) vs the amount of alcohol. 

 

What is known is that water and alcohol accept the components that are assembled to make flavor(s) in a different manner.  The general (i. e. professional drinkers) consensus is that the more water (lower barrel entry proof) in the barrel equates to a better tasting final product (conceding that proven standards of distillation, aging and warehousing are being followed), when comparing the older industry standards to the current standard/higher barrel entry proof techniques now being used by most producers.   

 

So, it's not really more flavor vs less flavor.  Just better flavor, as more water tends to equate to a finished product that contains more of the generally pleasing flavor influences from the wood.  But it also goes beyond that, as Squire noted in that older brands were rounder, richer, more refined and often had a much thicker/oily mouth feel than those products currently hanging around at the local. 

 

There has been some very good discussion on the subject, here at SB.com over the years.  I'm a bit lazy, so I was hoping that one of the smarter veteran's would have already found us a link (or two).   

 

P. S.  I may be pontificating, but please note that I'm not asking a question.;)

What Squire said that actually addressed the issue is what you mentioned. And maybe that's the best way to describe it: full vs thin. For the life of me, I've never had a thin bourbon that had any volume of taste at all. I know everyone uses it as a texture descriptor, but it's always made me think of watered down bourbons. And if you think about people talking about dusties, you'll hear them say that a bottle tastes off profile, like prefire HH products. 

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Paddy

^^^Maybe that's the key takeaway. 

 

Higher barrel entry proof = more water added after the barrel dump (to get to brand/bottle proof) = a lower quality finished product, as that water hasn't had the benefit of the barrel/aging process...

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lcpfratn
15 minutes ago, alcoholica said:

 

Well, I'm sorry if you are offended and/or a snowflake about it. You regurgitated the same answers as others and didn't read followup posts. Someone beat you to your thought, not my fault. No need to be a keyboard warrior about it. 

 

That keyboard warrior is one of the most knowledgeable members of this forum and is also a Forum Moderator who was notifying you to tone it down!

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Harry in WashDC
17 minutes ago, alcoholica said:

 

Well, I'm sorry if you are offended and/or a snowflake about it. You regurgitated the same answers as others and didn't read followup posts. Someone beat you to your thought, not my fault. No need to be a keyboard warrior about it. 

 

What Squire said that actually addressed the issue is what you mentioned. And maybe that's the best way to describe it: full vs thin. For the life of me, I've never had a thin bourbon that had any volume of taste at all. I know everyone uses it as a texture descriptor, but it's always made me think of watered down bourbons. And if you think about people talking about dusties, you'll hear them say that a bottle tastes off profile, like prefire HH products. 

This and Paddy's following post of a few minutes ago sort of summarize the issue for me.  I think what Steve (flahute} was suggesting is that "complexity" vs. "better" or "thin" or whatever is preferable to a one dimensional distillate and, for whatever reason, low entry/low exit proof preserves "complexity".  I, for one and speaking only for me, am surprised at the number of cheapo bourbons at 80 proof that taste "burnt", kind of like coffee that has sat on the burner for too long after brewing - it may have been excellent an hour ago, but now . . .  I'm pretty sure entry/exit proof equates to the level of "burnt".

 

Yo, Steve - if I stepped on your ___skin, lemme know privately, and I'll genuflect toward the Great Rainy Northwest!B)

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flahute
38 minutes ago, alcoholica said:

 

Well, I'm sorry if you are offended and/or a snowflake about it. You regurgitated the same answers as others and didn't read followup posts. Someone beat you to your thought, not my fault. No need to be a keyboard warrior about it. 

 

What Squire said that actually addressed the issue is what you mentioned. And maybe that's the best way to describe it: full vs thin. For the life of me, I've never had a thin bourbon that had any volume of taste at all. I know everyone uses it as a texture descriptor, but it's always made me think of watered down bourbons. And if you think about people talking about dusties, you'll hear them say that a bottle tastes off profile, like prefire HH products. 

You need to choose your next words very carefully. And check yourself. 

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flahute
1 hour ago, Harry in WashDC said:

This and Paddy's following post of a few minutes ago sort of summarize the issue for me.  I think what Steve (flahute} was suggesting is that "complexity" vs. "better" or "thin" or whatever is preferable to a one dimensional distillate and, for whatever reason, low entry/low exit proof preserves "complexity".  I, for one and speaking only for me, am surprised at the number of cheapo bourbons at 80 proof that taste "burnt", kind of like coffee that has sat on the burner for too long after brewing - it may have been excellent an hour ago, but now . . .  I'm pretty sure entry/exit proof equates to the level of "burnt".

 

Yo, Steve - if I stepped on your ___skin, lemme know privately, and I'll genuflect toward the Great Rainy Northwest!B)

You know that you are good Harry. I love every one of your posts.

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Richnimrod

Hmmm.   'Keyboard warrior', 'snowflake', 'pontificate'. 

I wonder who among us has 'less-than-ideal' respect for the opinions of others? 

I, personally, don't mind differing opinions about Bourbon-related questions, and any sort of strongly held ones make the discussions more fun, IMO. 

I have to wonder how/why personal animosity creeps in, though.....   Just sayin'.....

 

I've enjoyed many of the posts made by my friends here; even when I can't always say I agree, or even like, the sentiments stated about Bourbon issues; but, when personal resentments enter, I tend to lose that joy.

That's just me, of course, others may well like this.

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alcoholica
9 hours ago, flahute said:

You need to choose your next words very carefully. And check yourself. 

I’ve honestly never seen so little power make someone’s chest puff out more. I’ve had some fun on here, but this is really a weird place. There are a few of you, and yes YOU are included that act like those little annoying vegans that just chirp chirp chirp. 

 

So do me me a favor, just delete my profile or PM the directions. I really don’t care. 

 

Most of you dudes on here are solid, but the softies ruined it for me. 

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flahute
10 minutes ago, alcoholica said:

I’ve honestly never seen so little power make someone’s chest puff out more. I’ve had some fun on here, but this is really a weird place. There are a few of you, and yes YOU are included that act like those little annoying vegans that just chirp chirp chirp. 

 

So do me me a favor, just delete my profile or PM the directions. I really don’t care. 

 

Most of you dudes on here are solid, but the softies ruined it for me. 

It has nothing to do with being soft. It’s about respecting others which you have demonstrated you are unable to do.  

If that’s the case than this place is not for you.  

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Vosgar
44 minutes ago, alcoholica said:

I’ve honestly never seen so little power make someone’s chest puff out more. I’ve had some fun on here, but this is really a weird place. There are a few of you, and yes YOU are included that act like those little annoying vegans that just chirp chirp chirp. 

 

So do me me a favor, just delete my profile or PM the directions. I really don’t care. 

 

Most of you dudes on here are solid, but the softies ruined it for me. 

It's a shame you have so much anger towards this group of people who share the same passion you obviously have for whiskey. We're all here to learn, to share knowledge and experiences, ask questions, etc., but mainly we want to have fun with our hobby. This isn't life or death stuff here, try to enjoy yourself!

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GaryT
1 hour ago, alcoholica said:

I’ve honestly never seen so little power make someone’s chest puff out more. I’ve had some fun on here, but this is really a weird place. There are a few of you, and yes YOU are included that act like those little annoying vegans that just chirp chirp chirp. 

 

So do me me a favor, just delete my profile or PM the directions. I really don’t care. 

 

Most of you dudes on here are solid, but the softies ruined it for me. 

So . . . as we all have opinions, mine is that you're a judgmental little @#$%, which is unfortunate because your question I think is a good one - although challenging.  And a lot of folks were trying to help work through that.  Flavor isn't a "thing" you can quantify.  We each taste different things as well as more or less things.  It isn't measured in PPM.  This is the point folks were trying to get across, but it is obvious to me you're too closed minded to get that.

 

I hope vegans, snowflakes, softies, etc did ruin the site for you - and you don't come back.  Because closed-minded, judgmental attacks like yours ruin the site for everyone else.  

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Harry in WashDC
Posted (edited)

Well, THAT sure went sour in a hurry.:(  Did somebody get a bad bottle of burnt bourbon and chug it? :rolleyes:

 

EDIT - think I'll go rinse out my mouth with some carrot juice.  Or GTS.  Pick one.B)

Edited by Harry in WashDC

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jbutler

 

17 hours ago, alcoholica said:

 

Well, I'm sorry if you are offended and/or a snowflake about it. You regurgitated the same answers as others and didn't read followup posts. Someone beat you to your thought, not my fault. No need to be a keyboard warrior about it. 

7 hours ago, alcoholica said:

So do me me a favor, just delete my profile or PM the directions. I really don’t care. 

 

No need to be an entitled fucking prick, either. Request granted.

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Phil T
Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, jbutler said:

 entitled fucking prick

Who do you think you are? Me?

 

:) :) :) :)

Edited by Phil T
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fishnbowljoe

One thing I've kinda learned over the years, (operative word "kinda") don't ask a question unless you're fully prepared for the answer. There's a chance it might not be the one you wanted or expected. And yes, I know of what I speak. I've screwed the pooch a number of times over the years in this regard. Please, don't everyone pile on at once. ;)

 

Biba! Joe

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Harry in WashDC
20 hours ago, Paddy said:

^^^Maybe that's the key takeaway. 

 

Higher barrel entry proof = more water added after the barrel dump (to get to brand/bottle proof) = a lower quality finished product, as that water hasn't had the benefit of the barrel/aging process...

Um, my water often is pretty aged, green in some cases.  Does that make it "better"?????:D

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CUfan99
3 hours ago, jbutler said:

 

No need to be an entitled fucking prick, either. Request granted.

Although distasteful, flameouts are enjoyable. 

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ondarocks

I'm still trying to figure out the "weird place" comment. I guess he doesn't get out much. Good thing he took his ball and went home

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Paddy
51 minutes ago, CUfan99 said:

Although distasteful, flameouts are enjoyable. 

Although I attempted to ignore it in my discussions with him, IMO, he'd been stepping on, and smudging up the line for a while now. 

 

One one of the many things that makes this place special is that we don't have a bunch of ass hats here, so when one shows up, he/she pretty quickly will start to smell the place up to the point where things come to a head.  

 

Most folks will come around when they realize this is not your typical internet chat forum, as we're a damn fine bunch of friendly folks.  However, there is always that one who wishes to take the rocky path of righteous entitlement right to the edge of the cliff. 

 

Me thinks he was just a bit attention deprived as a child.  Another theory (since we're all usually drinking here), is that he doesn't know how to act 'cause he can't hold is liquor!  ;)

 

But hey, what do I know?

 

 

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Spade

I read this thread all at once... it was something else. The vegan comment almost seemed like a parody.

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flahute
1 hour ago, Paddy said:

Although I attempted to ignore it in my discussions with him, IMO, he'd been stepping on, and smudging up the line for a while now. 

 

One one of the many things that makes this place special is that we don't have a bunch of ass hats here, so when one shows up, he/she pretty quickly will start to smell the place up to the point where things come to a head.  

 

Most folks will come around when they realize this is not your typical internet chat forum, as we're a damn fine bunch of friendly folks.  However, there is always that one who wishes to take the rocky path of righteous entitlement right to the edge of the cliff. 

 

Me thinks he was just a bit attention deprived as a child.  Another theory (since we're all usually drinking here), is that he doesn't know how to act 'cause he can't hold is liquor!  ;)

 

But hey, what do I know?

 

 

I think you’re on to something. 

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Harry in WashDC
16 hours ago, dcbt said:

The Q&A (or Q&nonA per Alcoholica) reminded me of this gem from local radio many years ago:

http://www.theunticket.com/do-you-like-this-gig-greggo/

You'd think those two were married because of the way they talk past each other.

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rjg1701

To circle back to the original topic, (this may have been discussed in one of the shared links) when cutting from barrel proof to bottle proof if water is added too quickly it can create sour/unpleasant flavors IIRC.  Another of the reasons that dusties which had little to no dilution are so tasty.

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