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KaskadskyjKozak

Bourbon

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Any recommendations out there? I want something smooth that you can drink straight but not so expensive it will break the bank, and you will not feel bad about mixing - say in a Manhattan.

 

If you enjoy the sweeter taste of something like JD, I'd recommend two that meet your listed criteria:

 

Maker's Mark - sweet, smooth, not too pricy. (And overrated IMO, but akin to a better JD)

 

Gentleman Jack - a smoother, slightly less sweet, more complex spirit put out by the JD folks. Charcoal mellowed twice, first prior to aging and then prior to bottling.

 

To get better than this, you're going to spend more money and get diminishing returns if you're using it for cocktails. If you're going to just sip it/drink it straight go up to:

 

Knob Creek (another sweeter bourbon, small batch, put out by the Beam people, lot of awards and whatnot, a little sweet for my taste). Probably the all around best of the Beam small batch stuff, and one of the best sweeter bourbons on the market.100 proof.

 

Basil Hayden (another Beam small batch), uses twice as much rye as normal bourbons (but it's not a pure rye whisky) which gives is a more peppery nose/taste, but this is still a mild, smooth, non threatening bourbon. Light finish, not too much "bite". 80 proof.

 

Wild Turkey Rare Breed..very complex, a blend of 6,8,12yr olds with notes of hot pepper, leather, tobacco, orange, toasted nuts. My personal favorite for sipping. A little hot on the palate for some at about 108 proof.

 

Bookers (yet another of the Beam small batches, this is uncut right out of the barrell, way stout at around 125 proof, fairly complex with big oak/smoky/tobacco notes...I'm not a fan of this, overrated IMO)

 

Wild Turkey Kentucky Spirit. Slightly pricy, very complex, huge body and long finish. Richer, less peppery, very slightly sweeter and with a better finish than Rare Breed. 101 proof.

 

I picked up some MM 90 on Sat. It was an experience in itself. The Eastgate liquor store is in a strip mall with a working gas station - one of the few on the Eastside. It was a zoo. A line of cars going down the street all weekend. And the shell station ran out of gas twice.

 

The road-enraged, half-frozen gas buyers, seemed to all head to the liquor store to procure festive supplies to keep warm, and replace the idiot boxes that don't work. Usually that liquor store has about 4-5 people at any given time. When I walked in there were at least 30. I saw an old grandma grab four bottles of Captain Morgan's and proceed straight to checkout.

 

In any case, I find MM quite tasty. I had a couple jiggers on Sat, straight, no ice (I had no ice!). Last night I mixed up a nice Manhattan. Thumbs up! As for the other brands... I'll be trying them in the near future. As someone pointed out, drinking this stuff is an acquired taste, like wine drinking - and it takes some time to figure out what you like and to appreciate it.

 

I also got some Chopin vodka for my father-in-law. A nice Christmas present - I'm sure he'll share. :-)

 

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laphroig_b.jpg

 

I second that!!!

 

Isn't Makers Mark Canadian Whiskey...not bourbon

Jameson is Irish Whiskey I believe...not bourbon

Bourbon isn't really very good anyway.

Neither are Canadian or Irish Whiskeys.

Scotch is the way to go.

Relatively inexpensive blended scotch: J&B

Really friggin good scotch (if you like the smoky/peaty Islay varieties): Laphroaig or Talisker

 

Gotta get a titanium flask to put it in, though. Some bourbons come in plastic.

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laphroig_b.jpg

 

I second that!!!

 

Isn't Makers Mark Canadian Whiskey...not bourbon

Jameson is Irish Whiskey I believe...not bourbon

Bourbon isn't really very good anyway.

Neither are Canadian or Irish Whiskeys.

Scotch is the way to go.

Relatively inexpensive blended scotch: J&B

Really friggin good scotch (if you like the smoky/peaty Islay varieties): Laphroaig or Talisker

 

Gotta get a titanium flask to put it in, though. Some bourbons come in plastic.

 

Maker's Mark is Bourbon - the rest you mention are not.

 

Scotch has its place. So does Bourbon. Why not enjoy both?

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Maker's Mark is Bourbon - the rest you mention are not.

 

My bad you are right. I was going off of memory - should have googled it first.

 

Scotch has its place. So does Bourbon. Why not enjoy both?

 

Totally, if you enjoy both, go for it. I simply do not enjoy very much most bourbons I have tasted. Granted I have not tried perhaps some of the finer bourbons, just the widely available ones.

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my favorite sipping whiskies:

1)Bullit

2)Jameson and Makers Mark (tie)

3)Crown Royal

4)and Jack D

 

Scotch is basically a different topic all together. I enjoy the less the smokey flavors.

 

 

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Maker's Mark will have a sweeter finish than any other bourbon b/c it's the only one made with wheat (rather than rye).

 

Others have thrown out the usual names (Basil, Knob Creek, etc.) but if you like Maker's I suggest trying Corner Creek. Your local store won't have it, but if there's a super-sized liquor store they might have it (or can get it). It's the only rye bourbon I've had that finishes as nicely as Maker's.

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had a shot of jonny walker blue bought for me by the bar owner the other night durring the game, ummm, i am sold. now to start robbing banks to support a new drinking habit.

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Bump.

 

OK, summer is over, and so are the mojitos, gin and tonics, negronis, and caipirinhas. It's time to return to the uisce beathas, including good old American bourbon.

 

Following the advice from this thread, I bought MM90 last december, and just finished it off about a month ago. I've been exploring a bit, and here are my evaluations:

 

Maker's Mark: didn't enjoy sipping it. Makes a good mixer for cocktails - tried it in a Manhattan, Ward 8, Sazerac, Mint Julep, and Old Fashioned. I liked all, however, I've decided I prefer most of these cocktails with rye whiskey instead (see below). The exception is the Ward 8 which really needs that distinctive bourbon flavor.

 

Wild Turkey 101: I bought a small bottle for a TH beverage, and sipped it neat. I found it it to be surprisingly good - very peppery, and with all the other good flavors of bourbon. A pleasant surprise. I have yet to try it in cocktails.

 

Knob Creek: this stuff is dangerous. I bought a bottle a couple of weeks ago and it's more than half gone already. Super smooth, very sweet, a delicious dessert drink. I would never dream of mixing this stuff in a cocktail. My favorite so far.

 

Eagle Rare 10 year: just picked up a bottle and have only tried one pour. It's similar to Knob Creek, but not as sweet and with a little less complexity. Very good, however. I'll need to try some more before making a final call on it.

 

Wild Turkey Rye 101: not a bourbon of course. I bought it as a substitute for bourbon in cocktails when my MM90 ran out. I prefer it in Old Fashioneds and Sazeracs. It makes a great dry Manhattan. Very good stuff. Like the WT 101 bourbon, it's high quality for a lower price. I tried sipping the stuff, but it was not smooth enough for my taste. I'd like to try one of the other ryes out there... they're tough to find (with the exception of the ubiquitous Jim Beam).

 

Not sure where to turn next for my explorations. I've got Woodford's and Russell Reserve on my tick list. Am also interested in trying Bulleit and 1792.

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Do you ever wonder if you put a blindfold and did a blind taste test, if you would mistake some cheap-assed generically blended piss water for your classic high end, high class, single barrel top shelf bourbon which pairs so nicely with blah blah blah?

 

I've seen it happen. Potters (about the cheapest blend available) was selected by one person.

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I been playing too.

 

The latest one I tried was "Bullet". Very interesting. Smelled Maple in it, but couldn't taste it. Have you ever tried this one? It's a very curious experience.

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Do you ever wonder if you put a blindfold and did a blind taste test, if you would mistake some cheap-assed generically blended piss water for your classic high end, high class, single barrel top shelf bourbon which pairs so nicely with blah blah blah?

 

I've seen it happen. Potters (about the cheapest blend available) was selected by one person.

 

I don't think so... the cheap stuff seems to be really inferior to me. Say, Early Times or Ezra. In a blind study, I'm pretty sure I'd say that those are piss-water. But as you get into the higher end stuff, I bet there are cases where this would occur. All I care about is what tastes good to me and I enjoy. For a less expensive drink, I'd say the WT101 is pretty damn good. I've been putting off buying Blanton's to be honest, because I don't see how it could possibly be TWICE as good as WT 101 - and yet it's twice the price. And doing a blind taste test might actually be a good way to taste some of those.

 

I'm not sure how you'd do the test though... part of enjoying whiskey comes after swallowing a sip, enjoying the aromas, the bite, the finish - not like wine where you spit it out? You'd be too drunk to know the difference before you tried very much, I'd think. Personally, I start to lose the ability to really taste after about 60ml.

 

 

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I been playing too.

 

The latest one I tried was "Bullet". Very interesting. Smelled Maple in it, but couldn't taste it. Have you ever tried this one? It's a very curious experience.

 

I've been meaning to try it, but have read mixed reviews on it. Eventually I'd like to.

 

Unfortunately our crappy state liquor stores don't sell many of these in 50 ml sizes. Those are a great way to try something. I've tried several that way. You can special order, but, if the store doesn't think they can sell the item, YOU have to buy a whole case yourself.

 

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With the WT, I'd lose it right away. I am deathly allergic to that and always wondered why that drink triggers an anaphelactic shock (with one tiny stinkin sip) and no other that I have tried does this. Any thoughts?

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I been playing too.

 

The latest one I tried was "Bullet". Very interesting. Smelled Maple in it, but couldn't taste it. Have you ever tried this one? It's a very curious experience.

 

I've been meaning to try it, but have read mixed reviews on it. Eventually I'd like to.

 

Unfortunately our crappy state liquor stores don't sell many of these in 50 ml sizes. Those are a great way to try something. I've tried several that way. You can special order, but, if the store doesn't think they can sell the item, YOU have to buy a whole case yourself.

I just went to Lombardis and had a little along with a bit of Angel Del Morte. I was a treasure the next day I'll tell you.

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With the WT, I'd lose it right away. I am deathly allergic to that and always wondered why that drink triggers an anaphelactic shock (with one tiny stinkin sip) and no other that I have tried does this. Any thoughts?

 

Psychosomatic? Had a bad experience with it in college?

I know quite a few people who almost start to dry-heave at the mention of Southern Comfort, or peach schnapps. :laf:

 

But seriously, maybe there is really something in it that affects you negatively? Each of these whiskeys does use a different blend of ingredients (rye, corn, etc), processing, and storage.

 

 

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I am telling you that one small sip of Wild Turkey sends me to the hospital because I stop breathing. So, I do consider that a bad experience.

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I am telling you that one small sip of Wild Turkey sends me to the hospital because I stop breathing. So, I do consider that a bad experience.

 

wow, I thought you were exaggerating. :-/

 

you should call the company ... maybe they have an idea.

 

aren't you afraid of trying other bourbons? you could have the same reaction from some other brand...

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No, I have anti-whatchacallit I carry with me. I have one other thing that causes a pretty good scare, but not as bad as WT. Oh, and I once had a reaction in an airport that was scary and embarrassing. You soon learn to carry medicine with you wherever you go.

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