Seeking Exceptional Bourbons

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badbeard

Starting to Get Obsessed
Sep 9, 2017
284
585
Kentucky, USA
I skimmed through the pages here quickly, so I am not sure if any of these are mentioned.
For your first objective, Here's a couple that are definitely more expensive, but I think are actually worth the coin:
Old Forester Birthday Bourbon - I've tried a few different "birthdays", and they have all been exceptional.
Blood Oath - I've personally tried both Pacts 5, 6, and 8. All of them were fantastic.

For everyday chuckin' down your neck :
Fighting Cock - cheap as dirt, but I personally think it drinks way above it's price.
Wild Turkey Longbranch
MB Roland Straight - If you are feelin fat in the wallet, get the Single Barrel
Belle Meade Reserve
Belle Meade XO - if you don't mind a little Cognac note. I dig it.

James E. Pepper's "Old Pepper" Single Barrel. It's a rye, but I think it's also worth mentioning since it's so freakin good.
And just because it drinks like a bourbon due to the barrels they use, Slane Irish Whiskey.

I could go on.. I live in such close proximity to the bourbon trail (only an hour away from Bardstown) that I've done the distillery crawl more times than I'd like to admit.
 
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ssjones

Moderator
Staff member
May 11, 2011
18,257
10,926
Maryland
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Today turned out even better! A pipe forum member from another forum was seeking a Maryland-only
Flying Dog Release, so I've hitting some liquor store I usually don't frequent. I hit paydirt at a big Fly Dog retailer near one of my restaurants. Yikes, $32/bottle for the Flying Dog Osopher Special Release. I passed on a bottle for myself, but asked if they had any Buffalo Trace - yep, the big bottle for a no-gouge price of $64. A good day!
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badbeard

Starting to Get Obsessed
Sep 9, 2017
284
585
Kentucky, USA
Apparently, Buffalo Trace is not that big of a deal in my area. I can get 750s for 29.99. Not complaining, I love it. I am also digging very much on Weller right now.
Y'all are gonna hate me, but I think I paid 21 and change with tax two days ago here in KY for Buffalo Trace. It was on the bottom shelf next to Mellow Corn.. :ROFLMAO:
When I first moved here, I remember going into the Walmart Liquor and Wine(they have a separate little building), and seeing a bottle of Very Old Barton on the shelf for $9.48. I used to buy it in Oregon for $16. Seeing Willet Pot Still Reserve on the shelf for $39 when it was previously almost unobtainable in OR, and if you could find it it was in the $90 range.
Sadly though, Eagle Rare is actually rare here, and I haven't seen a bottle of Blanton's, even when I visited the Buffalo Trace distillery. The upside is that there are whole shelves in most liquor stores that are "Kentucky Only" releases, which are typically weird relabels of various distilleries top end spirits, usually with slightly less age, or no age statement at all. Heaven Hill "Green Label" for instance, is a bottom shelf priced($12-13) 6 year old, that is pretty dang good, using the same mashbill as Henry McKenna bottled in bond.
 

ssjones

Moderator
Staff member
May 11, 2011
18,257
10,926
Maryland
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I'm opening a new restaurant near Cincinnati tomorrow, but we had the day off today. I took a colleague down to the nearby Kentucky Bourbon Trail and started at the Buffalo Trace Distillery. There were about 250 people in line, and waiting an hour and half for $40 bottles of Eagle Rare. After 30 minutes in line, they sold out, and half the crowd left. That left some open slots for us to get into a tour (they are booked online until April!) They had $27 bottles of Buffalo Trace, and sold out of that after lunch. The tour was really interesting. We went to the nearby Castle & Key distillery (too boutique for me) and found the Woodford Reserve is closed on Sunday. 20230226_114523.jpg20230226_114608.jpg20230226_122241.jpg20230226_123630.jpg20230226_134440.jpg20230226_134642.jpg
 

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Piping Rooster

Can't Leave
Jun 29, 2022
398
2,064
Champa Bay
I'm opening a new restaurant near Cincinnati tomorrow, but we had the day off today. I took a colleague down to the nearby Kentucky Bourbon Trail and started at the Buffalo Trace Distillery. There were about 250 people in line, and waiting an hour and half for $40 bottles of Eagle Rare. After 30 minutes in line, they sold out, and half the crowd left. That left some open slots for us to get into a tour (they are booked online until April!) They had $27 bottles of Buffalo Trace, and sold out of that after lunch. The tour was really interesting. We went to the nearby Castle & Key distillery (too boutique for me) and found the Woodford Reserve is closed on Sunday. View attachment 205661View attachment 205662View attachment 205663View attachment 205664View attachment 205665View attachment 205666
$100 for Eagle Rare in my neck of the woods.

Trying to get the ole ball and chain to do the Bourbon Trail with me for our next vacay. Something I've been wanting to do since it started.
 

ssjones

Moderator
Staff member
May 11, 2011
18,257
10,926
Maryland
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I've had Blantons, it's marginally better than Buffalo Trace, by my taste buds.
I didn't care for the Sazarac Rye, but I really don't like rye.
Interestingly, the Eagle Rare, to me and my co-worker was better the the W. L. Weller.

The tour guide said that their production would catch up to public demand in about 10 years.

Also interesting, Kentucky distillers cannot sell their own product. They must sell it to a broker, then buy it back, and then sell it in their company stores/gift shops.
 

BarrelProof

Lifer
Mar 29, 2020
2,701
10,577
39
The Last Frontier
I've had Blantons, it's marginally better than Buffalo Trace, by my taste buds.
I didn't care for the Sazarac Rye, but I really don't like rye.
Interestingly, the Eagle Rare, to me and my co-worker was better the the W. L. Weller.

The tour guide said that their production would catch up to public demand in about 10 years.

Also interesting, Kentucky distillers cannot sell their own product. They must sell it to a broker, then buy it back, and then sell it in their company stores/gift shops.

I agree with you about the Eagle Rare. That’s the best bang for your buck, I think. But my taste buds would disagree with yours on Blanton’s. That said, I’ve been drinking it for a lot longer than it became so popular and it was my daily drinker for years. Then all of this happened.

I can get it relatively easily, so I stocked up. Then quit drinking. Such is life.
 
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