The Hustler Movie

J. T. S. Brown Bottled in Bond Bourbon Review

In Bourbon Whiskey Reviews by Thomas Fondano8 Comments


Welcome to a new tasting series on lower shelf bourbons. Bourbon & Banter contributor, Thomas Fondano, will be trying out and commenting on bourbons priced under $20. Knowing that not all sub-$20 bourbons will be great, Thomas will be adding a new category to our standard tasting notes – Straight, Old Fashioned or Manhattan  – to see whether a classic cocktail improves on a straight tasting. We hope you enjoy this new series of reviews and hope you’ll help us shape future reviews by letting us know in the comments what sub-$20 bourbon you’d like us to review next.


“Preacher! Go on down and get me some bourbon. J. T. S. Brown. No ice, no glass.” 
– Paul Newman as Eddie Felson, The Hustler


I’d noticed J. T. S. Brown sitting on the bottom shelf of my favorite local liquor store and couldn’t figure out why it sounded familiar. After a little research, I went back and bought a bottle. That quote right there is a good enough reason for me to try a bourbon. Also, I’m a sucker for bonded whiskeys that look like their label hasn’t changed in 40 years.

J.T.S. Brown Bottled In Bond Bourbon BottleBourbon Name:
  J. T. S. Brown Bottled in Bond

Proof: 100

Age: NAS – No Age Statement

Year:  2014

How I Drank It:  Neat, in Glencairn whiskey glass.

My Nose Noticed:*  Caramel Sweetness | Corn

First Sip:  Spicy | Oily | Grassy | Slightly Medicinal

The Burn:**  A lingering finish with an enjoyable Atomic Fireball candy burn that reminds you you’re drinking 100 proof bourbon.

Neat, Splash or Rocks:  A splash of water opens up the sweetness and eases the burn a bit too much for me. If rocks is your thing, it’ll work too. Personally, I find this enjoyable neat.

Straight, Old Fashioned or Manhattan: Drink this one straight! The Old Fashioned will come out okay if you half your normal amount of sugar. The Manhattan was cloying like someone added the liquid from a jar of cheap maraschino cherries, which I did not.

Share With: Friends who like bonded bourbons.

Worth The Price:  At $13.75, yes. It’s a sturdy sipper.

Bottle, Bar or Bust: Bottle, though if you manage to find it in a bar it would pair nicely with a beer. While I can’t fully endorse Mr. Felson’s drinking style, J. T. S. Brown Bottled in Bond is an enjoyable budget whiskey.




*I like to let my bourbon sit in the glass for at least 5 minutes before I start to smell it or have a drink. I personally find that it’s better to let some of the alcohol waft off before diving in. If I’m drinking bourbon on the rocks I skip the waiting and dive in both feet first.
**Some of you refer to this as the “finish” but let’s be honest. Don’t we all just want to know if it burns good?





About the Author
Thomas Fondano

Thomas Fondano

Facebook Twitter

Thomas Fondano has been drinking bourbon and trying every bottling he can get his hands on since last century. While he enjoys all types of whiskeys, bourbon remains his go-to whenever he says, “I need a drink.” He lives with his wife and two children in Portland, Oregon where he makes cocktails every day at 5pm. Read Thomas' full profile.


  1. Avatar

    Love the story.
    I live in NYC, where can I buy or order, J.T.S. Brown ?
    I love The Hustler and asked around an no one in NYC seems to sell it.

  2. Avatar

    Angel – I got a ton at my local liquor store in Schererville Indiana. $11.99’s the price. I grab a couple bottles when I’m gettin low. Contact me and let’s figure out how to get you some.

    1. Avatar

      Fred, I live in Iowa, retired Marine Officer, I can’t get JTS Brown in Iowa and they can’t ship me into state from a private store, I would be happy if you could help me out, if you can contact me at [email protected] Thanks, Joe Mirowski

  3. Avatar

    “No Age Statement” however Bottled in Bond requires a minimum of 4 years. So there you go.

  4. Avatar

    As I usual drink either Bookers or Basil Hayden. I was pleasantly surprised at how smooth J.T.S. Brown was in a Kentuckey mule. From a price point will be looking at the local package store for this treasure.

  5. Avatar

    Used to be able to get it various liquor stores in North San Antonio but here lately nowhere to be found!🤔

  6. Avatar

    Finally, tried JTS Brown, it is Smooth. My friend was in Texas and was able to bring me back a bottle to NYC. Another friend brought me an Arturo Fuente- Hemingway. Now all set for the playoffs, bitter cold and tributes to the 3 Kings, Martin, Elvis and Lebron.

Leave a Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.