Whisky Advocate

Two new Buffalo Trace Experimental Collection Whiskeys: updated!

August 14th, 2009

Debuting this fall, two “Double Barrel” bottlings. One, a 1993 vintage. The other, a 1997 vintage.

Both are ryed bourbons. Both were aged in new charred oak barrels for 8 years, and then re-barrelled into new charred oak barrels again for the rest of their life span.

I tasted both today. Not enough time to go into detail now, but will fill you in on these two–and the entire new Buffalo Trace Antique collection, which I also tasted–in the near future.


Here are my “tweets” on these two whiskeys soon after I tasted them yesterday. These are informal thoughts, based on cask samples, not the final (lower-proof) dressed bottle. They haven’t been bottled yet. I’ll provide a more formal review of the final product later.

1997 Vintage Double Barrel BT Experimental Collection. Aged 8 yrs. then again in in virgin charred oak barrels. Very woody, but drinkable.

1993 Vintage Double Barrel BT Experimental Collection. Aged 8 yrs. then again in in virgin charred oak barrels. Over the line in oak. Avoid!

6 Responses to “Two new Buffalo Trace Experimental Collection Whiskeys: updated!”

  1. Harvey Fry says:

    John: are you really suggesting that, after following this very uneven experiment from the git-go= all the way through (i count) eleven little half bottles, WE SHOULD NOW ACTUALLY AVOID ONE (#13) just because it’s turned nasty? with all due respect, i don’t think so. the way i see it= no one in his right mind would have gone this far IF HE DIDN’T TOTALLY THINK OF IT AS TRULY EXPERIMENTAL. in other words, A GENUINE OPPORTUNITY TO LEARN HOW ALL KINDS OF WEIRD (SOMETIMES EVEN COUNTERINTUITIVE) MESSINGS WITH VARIOUS ASPECTS OF THE PROCESS EFFECT THE FINAL PRODUCT. think of it= we’ve got over $500 invested in a bunch of little curiosity shop items of which 2 might somehow make it as future mass produced expressions? maybe all of ’em put together wouldn’t lead to one real goody. anyway, i figure= in for a penny, in for a pound……the day i skip one’ll be the day i give the whole shebang the pitch. then again, you may just have something= we should have enough evidence by now that this ‘experiment’ may just have been on its job too long?

    good news for the drinking collectors/ bad news for the mantle decorators? i for one would love it if you could see your way to bringing up a thread where the folks could weigh in on buying to drink versus ‘investing’ or whatever you wanna call putting a whole lot of your hard earned coin into things you have little or no intention of ever using as they were designed.

    at least with art, stamps, coins you can enjoy looking….with records, listening…with cars & machines, operating them….etc?

  2. John Hansell says:

    That’s just it Harvey. Not everyone is like you. In fact, you are the exception, not the norm. Very few people have the means to go out and by even a fraction of the whiskies you do every year.

    Many people can only afford to purchase a few or maybe several bottles of whisky for the entire year. Part of my job is to steer them towards the whiskeys (and whiskies) I think are worth their hard-earned money and away from the whiskeys that aren’t worth their hard-earned money.

    Yes, it’s true that you, me, and several others reading this blog thrive on trying as many whiskeys we can, learning from it, and even debate about them. For me, it’s my job. And that’s great. But there are others reading this blog who just want to go out and buy a few bottles of whiskey this year they will enjoy. It’s as simple as that, and there’s nothing wrong with that.

    Perspective, Harvey.

  3. Harvey Fry says:

    John, you’re 100% right. please forgive me= i’m kinda played out from several days (see below at the end of the chat with Jim Murray entry) of extended (i’m beginning to look & feel like an imitation “Gaz” Regan on a mucho-mucho-multi-bar-drinking-bout-book-tout) these little monsters should probably have been flagged as wanna-bee-boutique, way-beyond-even-the-most-infinite-of-dervishes, keep-back-in-the-lab-report-out-only-in-imginary-scientific-journals & far-off-limits-to-everyday-drinkers-for-pleasure from the git go! almost certainly now you’ve instinctively revealed IT that they’ve been on their jobs too long, have passed well over/beyond the hump of even curiosity for it’s own sake &, as an entire genre, should probably be abandoned & left in the empty bottle heap of idle time. avoid may not be strong enough!

    anyway, thank you for bringing me back down to good-ol’-kiss-the-sky earth. i’m never quite comfortable out there spinning even in cheap immitation Gaz giddy-up^

  4. Tony Menechella says:

    You may have to refresh my memory, but I seem to recall these same faults with the first Double Barrel Experiment a few years back??

  5. Tony Menechella says:

    Excuse me, Twice Barreled.

  6. John Hansell says:

    Yes, Tony. Good memory! It was also a 1993 and bottled in 2006. But according to my bottle of it (which I still have), the first one was from a differt mash formula (#2 vs what they told us was going to be #1 in the new bottling). #1, according to master distiller Harlen Wheatley, is the low rye mash formula.

© Copyright 2017. Whisky Advocate. All rights reserved.