Vintage Bourbon 17, 1983-2000, 43%

Vintage Bourbon is both a description and a brand name. It also is something I’ve been eyeballing in auctions for years but prices are fairly insane. Of course, any old whisky and especially older bottlings of old whisky are insanely expensive nowadays, but bourbon has surged spectacularly over the last decade or so.

Image from Best of Wines

I got a sample of this from my whisky buddy Nils last week, and I quickly sat down to try it. There’s a few more in the works to be reviewed next week.

‘Kentucky Bourbon Distillers’ is in this case a bottler. Currently they do have a distillery, Willett, but that’s only been the case since a decade or so. The distillery existed since the 1930s but closed down in 1980. So, this can’t be from their own distillery. Also, if it was, it would have been bottled under the Willett brand name, I would assume.

Dry bourbon with lots of oak and some charcoal. Corn stalks, brown sugar and waxed leather.

Quite a syrupy texture with some heat, oak and chili peppers. After that arrival it’s very gentle, and rather dry. Brown sugar, a bit of charcoal too.

A long finish with dark, toasted bread. A bit more spicy than the palate was. Black pepper, oak. Very gentle, but there is a surprising bitter note that adds some depth.

That extra depth because of the slight bitterness pulls it up a little bit. I was really hoping for fireworks with a bourbon this old, but that didn’t really happen. Without the finish being what it is it would have scored a bit lower.



About Sjoerd de Haan-Kramer

I'm very interested in booze, with a focus on whisky. I like to listen to loads of music and play lots of Magic: the Gathering, and board games too. I'm married to Anneke, have two daughters Ot and Cato, a son Moos and a cat called Kikker (which means Frog, in Dutch). I live in Krommenie, The Netherlands.
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1 Response to Vintage Bourbon 17, 1983-2000, 43%

  1. Pingback: Vintage Bourbon 25, 1976-2001, 43% | Malt Fascination

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