Monthly Archives: March 2014
Over the past year, The Bourbon Guys have had the honor of tasting many great and different bourbons. As a follow up to last year’s “Sweet 16 of American Whiskey” we have decided to share our list of Sweet Sixteen Bourbons for 2013 and 2014. Once again we also wanted to release this list in honor of March Madness. We see this as fitting because it’s the start of the NCAA Basketball Tournament Sweet 16 and because we are likely to stir up a little “Madness” with our choices. Continue reading
If you’re reading this you are probably well aware that bourbon is booming. The spirit is seeing a renaissance of incredible magnitude. But how has the recent bourbon boom affected us short term and how will it affect us long term? Continue reading
Earlier this week, we had the unique opportunity to try Old Fitzgerald with our friend, and foremost bourbon historian, Michael Veach of the Filson Historical Society and 64 of our newest friends. This long running product of corn, wheat and malted barley comes in at 100 proof, but it is as smooth as any bourbon at least 10 proof points its junior.
Bourbon Name: Old Fitzgerald 100
Distiller: Heaven Hill Distillery
Age: At Least 4 Years, but the color implies older components
Color: Honey Burnt Orange
Nose: The nose began with sweet caramel giving way to that Heaven Hill nuttiness of pecans. One of our dear friends called attention to a silky “buttercup” – MW.
Taste: Pears present on the front palate with a prominent butter pecan. The mid-palate finds pepper spice and a rise in savory barrel elements.
Finish: The pepper carries through the long, long finish where it is met with a sweet vanilla, butter, and a return of the Heaven Hill signature nutty pecan.
Overall Rating: ( 86/ 100 ) Get It
Old Fitzgerald has proven once again why it has so long endured. From distillery to distillery, this label has undergone mild modification over its extensive history, but its quality carries on. At $15.00 per 750 ml, do yourself a favor: Pick up a bottle and have a friend set up a blind tasting with this one in the mix. I think you’ll be surprised at just how much you like it compared to your usual suspects.
A few days ago, we had the opportunity to revisit an old favorite, Old Forester Signature Bourbon. This 100 proof staple from Brown-Forman is a heartier version of its 86 proof sibling, and a solid offering form master distiller Chris Morris. This Straight Bourbon whiskey lacks an age statement, but we would peg it at least four years old. At less than $20 per 750 ml, this bourbon is a star of its price point.
Bourbon Name: Old Forester Signature
Distiller: Brown Forman
Age: 4+ Years
Color: Rich amber
Nose: The nose produced sweet elements of apricots and brown sugar. Mild rye spice and cinnamon rise up to balance the experience.
Taste: The front palate is dominated by candied walnuts, leather and brown sugar. Cinnamon spice rises on the mid-palate along with the caramels of charred oak. Mild rye helps to balance the sweetness, but we might have liked a bit more of this savory spice.
Finish: The finish is clean and relatively long for a bourbon of this price point. The sweet apricot notes and pleasant nuttiness return to bring the experience full circle.
Overall Rating: ( 88 / 100 ) A Definite Go-To
Old Forester Signature is an elevated offering from a staple in the bourbon world, Brown Forman. The sweet elements are balanced by pleasant, savory spice on the mid-palate where they become the star straight through to the finish. If you are looking for a well-crafted bourbon at an entry level price point, you may just have found it.