Old Forester 1910 Old Fine Whisky Review Header

Old Forester 1910 Old Fine Whisky Review

In Bourbon Whiskey Reviews by Steve Coomes6 Comments


"Mature Old Forester enters a second barrel at 100 proof, just as it did in 1910. The second barrel is charred nearly to the point of incineration. This low entry proof allows more of the wood’s sugars to be dissolved into the whiskey, resulting in a smooth, sweet whisky with a clean, spicy finish – yielding an exceptional character.” 

– Jackie Zykan, Old Forester Master Taster
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Old Forester 1910 Old Fine Whisky

  • DISTILLER: Old Forester (Brown-Forman)
  • MASH BILL: 72% Corn | 18% Rye | 10% Malted Barley
  • AGE: NAS - No Age Statement
  • YEAR: 2018
  • PROOF: 93 (46.5% ABV)
  • MSRP: $54.99
  • BUY ONLINE: Drizly.com

NOSE: Candy Corn | Warmed Caramel | Brown sugar, maple syrup emerges with water

TASTE: Caramelized brown sugar, graham cracker | Bright cedar and manageable tannin | Apples and raisins cooked with cinnamon

FINISH: Luxuriously sweet, long, pleasant warmth that’s barely dry initially but delivers tannins later | Adding water benefits viscosity

SHARE WITH: Any brown spirits fan.

WORTH THE PRICE: Absolutely. This is a high-quality whiskey I predict will face demand that pressures prices upward. If you can get it at MSRP, get it.

BOTTLE, BAR OR BUST: Bottle all day long. This will be a whiskey I want to enjoy over a long period. Can’t wait to try this in Manhattans and Old Fashioneds.

OVERALL: Read the Brand’s Notes to understand why this is a twice-barreled product. It’ll help you understand why it’s so fruity, sweet and tannic. Sipped at 93 proof, it’s perfect. With a splash of water, the fruit notes become juicier, the mouthfeel pleasantly heavier and spice notes emerge. As the last expression to be added to the Whiskey Row Series, there’s hardly a better way to cap off a multiline series so well. 1910 Old Fine Whiskey makes me want to buy all its Whiskey Row Series siblings (1870 Original Batch, 1897 Bottled In Bond and 1920 Prohibition Style) all over again for a vertical comparison. (And of course, I’ll include the Old Forester 100 proof, too, since it’s the backbone for all these and arguably the best dollar-for-dollar bourbon on the market.)

Here are a few related Old Forester reviews you might be interested in:

Learn more about Steve’s whiskey preferences and check out more of his reviews…

NOSE: Golden Fruit  |  Butterscotch  |  Cedar

TASTE: Raisins  |  Baking Spices  |  Buttery

FINISH: Well balanced medium-length finish that goes from sweet to spicy without being overly tannic or dry.

SHARE WITH: This one drinks light and is more nuanced so while any whiskey drinker will enjoy it, it’s probably best appreciate by those that have developed their palates beyond the basics.

WORTH THE PRICE: Based on the pricing of other expressions in the Whiskey Row Series this seems just about right.

BOTTLE, BAR OR BUST: For most folks a bottle is the way to go. If you prefer heavier bourbon (higher proof) you may want to mooch some off your friends or at a bar before investing in a full bottle.

OVERALL: My favorite in the Whiskey Row Series is the 1920 Prohibition Style thanks to its higher proof and robust flavor profile. As such, I wasn’t sure if this double-barreled lower proof expression would be something I’d enjoy sipping on. To be more specific, I was concerned if the normal banana-forward profile of Old Forester would mutate into something funky and lead to an unbalanced mess. While it’s undoubtedly lighter drinking than I prefer, it has great balance and the double-barrel finish has removed the banana notes such that the rest of the flavors can come together to create something unique and worth exploring. I’d have no issue drinking more of this when offered but I’ll hold off for heavier fare when it comes to investing my own money.

Learn more about Pop’s whiskey preferences and check out more of his reviews…

Old Forester Introduces 1910 Old Fine Whisky

Double-barreled expression represents fourth and final release in Whiskey Row series

Louisville, Ky. (October 11, 2018) -- Old Forester, America’s First Bottled Bourbon, will release the fourth and final expression in the Whiskey Row Series this month: the double barreled, 1910 Old Fine Whisky.

Like others in the series, 1910 Old Fine Whisky represents a specific point in Old Forester’s nearly 150-year-old history. In October 1910, a fire caused the bottling line to be shut down for an indefinite period of time. Complicating matters, there was a vat of mature whisky waiting to be bottled. Otherwise facing ruin, this whisky was instead stored in new, charred oak containers to rest until the line could be repaired. The resulting product, the first documented double-barreled whisky, was both different from Old Forester and remarkable enough to become an entirely new expression - Very Old Fine Whiskey.

“There are often pieces of our brand’s history that we happen upon by accident. Years ago, while searching through archives, we discovered a case of bourbon with a label I hadn’t seen before. We uncovered that Very Old Fine Whisky not only carried a great story, but a previously unknown heritage of double-barreled expressions,” said Chris Morris, Master Distiller, VP Whiskey Innovation, Brown-Forman.

Today, mimicking this historic bottling, this unique expression of Old Forester has undergone a second barreling in a lightly toasted, heavily charred barrel. Old Forester 1910 Old Fine Whisky is presented at 93 proof and will hit shelves nationally this October with a suggested retail price of $54.99 for a 750 ml. 

“Mature Old Forester enters a second barrel at 100 proof, just as it did in 1910,” said Old Forester Master Taster Jackie Zykan. “The second barrel is charred nearly to the point of incineration. This low entry proof allows more of the wood’s sugars to be dissolved into the whiskey, resulting in a smooth, sweet whisky with a clean, spicy finish – yielding an exceptional character.”

First launched in 2014, the Whiskey Row series tells the story of Old Forester’s one-of-a-kind history, highlighting significant milestones and production innovations along the way. The series includes 1870 Original Batch, a small batch bourbon pulling from three distinct warehouses, meant to reference founder George Garvin Brown’s original batching process; 1897 Bottled in Bond, a small batch of barrels from one distilling season, in the same year, aged in a federally bonded warehouse for a minimum of four years; and 1920 Prohibition Style, which represents a barrel strength of the prohibition era when Old Forester was granted one of just ten permits nationally to continue being sold as a medicinal whiskey.

“Old Forester has endured nearly 150 years of uninterrupted history and has survived prohibition, world wars and changing consumer tastes,” said Old Forester President Campbell Brown. “The Whiskey Row series is a great way for consumers to taste through Old Forester’s unique 148-year history.”

Sharing some of the stories that have kept this brand alive through five generations.

Visitors can learn more about Old Forester’s history at the newly opened Old Forester Distilling Co. Located in the building that Old Forester called home from 1882-1919, visitors follow the Bourbon making process in an immersive experience that leads them from fermentation and distillation, to the on-site cooperage where handcrafted barrels are raised and fired, then aged in an on-site maturation warehouse before bottling and shipment across the globe. Tours and tasting information can be found at OldForester.com. 

Tasting Notes from the Master Distiller and Master Taster:

Interlaced layers of buttercream, sticky toffee, cedar, and apricot

Smooth, well-rounded mingling of sweet oatmeal raisin cookie and milk chocolate, leading into caramel corn and evolving spice

Charred oak leads with a clean peripheral spice

Disclaimer: Old Forester provided Bourbon & Banter with a sample of their product for this review. We appreciate their willingness to allow us to review their products with no strings attached. Thank you.

About the Author
Steve Coomes

Steve Coomes

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Steve Coomes is a Louisville restaurant industry veteran turned award-winning food writer. In his 27-year career, he has edited and written for dozens of national trade and consumer publications including Pizza Today, Nation's Restaurant News and Southern Living. As a spirits writer, Steve's byline can be found in Whisky magazine, Bourbon Review, WhiskeyWash.com and other publications. In 2014, he authored the book, "Country Ham: A Southern Tradition of Hogs, Salt & Smoke," and has authored other titles as a private ghostwriter.


  1. Avatar

    If you are investing in the other Whiskey Row series for a taste test “vertical” then you have to include the closest cousin to OF 1910 which is Woodford Reserve Double Oak. But hey, that wouldn’t be “cool” with whiskey blogs now would it. Woodford isn’t as cool as Old Forester. Too mainstream.

    1. Stephen Coomes

      While Woodford and Old Forester share the same mashbill, the use of pot stills in the Woodford process makes a bourbon quite different from Old Forester. So, no, I’d not include it in an Old Forester vertical.

      1. Avatar

        Stephen, well whereas the finished products 1910 and Double Oak are a different story than the main line products, I find that the regular Woodford has a similar profile as most OF bourbons, which is a citrus, almost green apple note.

  2. Steve Coomes

    All our palates are different, which is a great thing. I get stone fruit, too, definitely orange, but usually dark cherry and some raisins in OF. I don’t pick up much of that in WR. A whiskey drinking friend with an excellent palate says, “Woodford tastes like a mouthful of pennies.” Like I said, glad our palates are different, ’cause I don’t get that. The mouthfeel of it, however, is not as pleasant to me as OF. WR, rye, though … I like that quite a bit.

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