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Collabor&tion Bourbon Review

In Bourbon Whiskey Reviews by Matt Self1 Comment

This is not as egregious a marketing scam as Diageo’s Whoop & Holler but it’s in the same over-priced and under-performing class. I asked Steve Nally, the Master Distiller at Bardstown Bourbon Company, if they considered and/or tasted a lower proof point for this whiskey and his response was that “no, cask strength is really popular so we just bottled it at cask strength.” The bottle and packaging is immaculate and the hang tag has a great Henry Ford quote printed on it. It’s just all sizzle and no steak.

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To Dusty or Not to Dusty: That is the Question

In Banter by Matt Self2 Comments

The dusty decanters and older bottles are very much in vogue. There aren’t many reviews for this old stuff because most people can’t get their hands on a similar bottle so many of those reviews just would not be relevant. I’ve tried my share of older product, and there is certainly some upside to opening a bottle that is (potentially) older than you. But there is also quite a bit of downside. You may find the “basement funk” and “moldy cardboard box” descriptions enjoyable while some may find them undrinkable. There is quite a variability in the quality and quantity of juice in these dusties; particularly when you enter the world of porcelain decanters.

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Ranger’s Station Candle Company Review

In Gear Reviews by Matt SelfLeave a Comment

My wife keeps asking me what I want for Father’s Day. As a whiskey nerd, this is a dangerous question. Two years ago, I told her that I wanted a bottle of William Larue Weller. She went looking for it in a few liquor stores. Discouraged, she called a good friend of mine who explained to her that she couldn’t find that in a store in June (or even October). “So what should I get him?” she asked.

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Leiper’s Fork Distillery

In Distilleries by Matt SelfLeave a Comment

Leiper’s Fork has long been a tourist destination for residents and visitors to Nashville with its laid back country vibe, idyllic setting, and celebrity draw. If you’re heading to Leiper’s Fork to check out Puckett’s Grocery’s open mic night or for breakfast at the Country Boy restaurant, you need to drive a little further down the road to check out Leiper’s Fork Distillery. Brought back to life by proprietor and master distiller Lee Kennedy, Leiper’s Fork Distillery is a sight to behold and is worth the trip to see the buildings and grounds even if you are not into whiskey.

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Thanksgiving Bourbon Hunt

In Banter by Matt SelfLeave a Comment

Just about every year on Thanksgiving after the family gatherings had all but died down, the football is about over, and the kids are fast asleep, I load up in a pick-up truck with my bourbon hunting brother to camp out in front of Midtown Corkdorks in Nashville for a shot at an allocated bottle of whiskey. I’m one of those guys. Crazy enough to brave the elements to pick up something that is worth way less than the time and energy spent acquiring it. Before I had developed relationships in the retail world, this was one of my best shots at getting a top shelf bottle. My first bottle of Eagle Rare 17 came from showing up in time to be #4 in the queue. I managed a bottle of NAS Black Maple Hill several years ago for a cool $40. If only I had known people would pay $400 today for it, I wouldn’t have drunk half that bottle over the past several years.

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Why I Will Never Buy Kentucky Owl (Again)

In Banter by Matt Self20 Comments

So The Whiskey Wash reported yesterday the acquisition of Kentucky Owl by Stoli Group USA, parent company S.P.I. Group. I’m not a real journalist I just play one online, but after surfing around on all of the S.P.I. Group related websites; this appears to be the first whiskey related brand for the company based in Luxembourg. That is saying something considering S.P.I. Group owns over 300 brands. Stoli group is best known for flavored vodka, not a “super-premium bourbon” as their press release describes Kentucky Owl. I like the Kentucky Owl that I have tried. It’s good. It’s overpriced for what it is, but it is good. One problem for me is that Stoli Group USA plans to take this from 15-20 barrels per batch that are sourced and aged distillate to national and international distribution. Where in the world are they going to find that much “super-premium bourbon” you may ask?