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Old Rip van Winkle family reserve rye


nor02lei
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I just got 2 bottles of ORVWFRR in a parcel from Germany. To my big surprise the label said A and Lawrenceburg. Is there anybody that is updated on the real age of the different letter versions of this brand? I did try the serge button with no success.

Leif

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You probably got one of the best ones, Leif. That was when the whiskey was actually 13 years or a bit over maybe and it had a particularly good balance. Can you give us some taste notes, please? I recall it as very fruity, smoky, bourbon-like too, but not tannic or too dry. All ORVW rye is good but those early expressions seemed tops to me.

Gary

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Great find / purchase Leif :bowdown:

I don't want to hijack a thread here, but does anyone know when this product will be available again? My last bottle is really getting low....

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You probably got one of the best ones, Leif. That was when the whiskey was actually 13 years or a bit over maybe and it had a particularly good balance. Can you give us some taste notes, please? I recall it as very fruity, smoky, bourbon-like too, but not tannic or too dry. All ORVW rye is good but those early expressions seemed tops to me.

Gary

Gary,

I have tasted the A-version several years ago and I remember it as very, very good. Not sure of the actual age though. I now the “Lottas home" is 13-14years, 1985 vintage 15 years, G, F 19 years and I assume the no letter ORVWFRR is 13 and the no letter ORVWOTR is 12 but I don’t now about the rest.

Leif

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I just got 2 bottles of ORVWFRR in a parcel from Germany. To my big surprise the label said A and Lawrenceburg. Is there anybody that is updated on the real age of the different letter versions of this brand? I did try the serge button with no success.

Leif

If I had to guess I'd say the "A" bottles were as Gary said, about 13-14 years of age, B (about 14-15), C (about 15-16) up to either E or F (18-19), where the remaining barrels of spirit were said to be married with a second rye and arrested.

It was also my understanding (according to Julian) that the 12 OTR and both 13 VWFR ryes were originally all the same age - (13 years) but were bottled at 3 different proofs / %s.

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  • 9 months later...

I had some from the I bottling recently and it was great. I find every time I sample it seems somewhat different and the age thing isn't linear in terms of the taste, i.e., some bottles just seem to hit a great balance (part of this may be the mingling with another rye that occurred before tanking). Whatever it is, the current one is excellent.

Also sampled recently the Michter's 10 rye (which I believe also is about 18 years old), Hirsch 23 year old rye and BMH 18 rye.

All these are very good. They may all have the same or partly the same origin as has often been discussed but in practice each bottle seems different, e.g., the Michter's 10 has quite a particular spicy quality as does the BMH 18. The Hirsch 23 was quite something, thick, smoky chestnut-like rich but not at all tannic.

Gary

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Anyone know what is up with this bottling from Japan that doesn't have a letter preceding the serial number?

http://stat.ameba.jp/user_images/13/e9/10030551836.jpg

Maybe Julian simply doesn't do the letters for the export market? OR Maybe this is a real early bottle before they started to use the letters?

Does anyone have any US bottles that don't have the letter? If so, when did you get them?

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Yes, the "numbered w/o a letter" was from the first release IIRC. I brought one to the Gazebo during the last Sampler. I stil have one left. And yes, they came here from Japan years ago, but are pretty much impossible to find over there now. The rye when it was actually 13yo.

Randy

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Randy is right. That bottle from Japan is from the first bottling we did on the VWFRR. It was 13-years old. We did not start putting letters on the bottles until we sold it in the states. I'm guessing the bottle with the "A" is about 14-years old.

Julian

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Thanks Randy and Julian! I might have a trip to Japan in the future so I'll have to see if I can hunt one down despite the near impossible odds.

Also, Julian, good to see that you still are snooping around here. I see that the prices on this years batch of VWFRR have gone up again. I guess I can't blame you though considering its quality and rareness!

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  • 4 months later...

I found a bottle of H, in Louisville when I was out hunting down something to drink while doing my taxes...on April 14, 2008.

I didn't expect to find any Van Winkle anything, so was pleased to find a store that had everything: VWFRR, Pappy 15, 20 and 23...and more than one of all.

I bought one of the Rye (leaving 2 others) for $42. The Pappy 15 was $62 ! So I passed.

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  • 2 months later...
Randy is right. That bottle from Japan is from the first bottling we did on the VWFRR. It was 13-years old. We did not start putting letters on the bottles until we sold it in the states. I'm guessing the bottle with the "A" is about 14-years old.

Julian

Yeah, I am in Japan and I dont see any "ORVWFRR", but I am grateful that I see VWFRR (13 yrs old). Is this a different product? I dont know what the "No. 1053" at the top of the label indicates, but my god is this a good bourbon.

I mean the flavor profile is not typically what I look for in a bourbon, but when a bourbon is this good, my preconseptions about what I like are thrown out the window and I imbibe with awe.

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BTW, does anyone know what the mash bill looks like for VWFRR?

Its so intensely different from what I normaly drink, I am imagining it has a far higher rye ratio than 51%.

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BTW, does anyone know what the mash bill looks like for VWFRR?

Its so intensely different from what I normaly drink, I am imagining it has a far higher rye ratio than 51%.

For one(the original) of the two ryes that are blended together...the mash bill is 38-51-11. Hope that helps!

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Straight rye must be at least 51% rye. So, in this case corn, rye and malted barley. Malted barley is the final ingredient in most bourbons and ryes.

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