"The Eagle Rare 101 is ten years old but is not a Single Barrel. The reason the 101 is not going to be marketed in the future is that they are concentrating on the Single Barrels and other expressions that use the same whiskey aged in different ways. Buffalo Trace miscalculated some ten years back on how popular their some of their bourbons were going to be and there just isn't enough to go around.
BTW, there is a 10 year old SB as well as the 17 year. There might be some in between, I am not sure. I know that the ER 10 SB is lower proof than the 101. They are 50.5% abv and 45% abv respectively. I haven't really drunk all that much ER, only enough to know that I really like it. 3 bottles of the 101 and a little more than half a bottle of the 10 year SB. Obviously I can't compare different bottlings of the SB. But the one bottle that I have had is, I think, a little better than the 101. Not enough better to make the higher price fully justified, IMHO. But who knows? I had three bottles of Elmer T Lee SB that I thought were really wonderful. I am pretty sure they were all from the same barrel though they aren't marked as to barrel. They all came from the same shelf, probably the same case and they all tasted the same. Then I got another one the other day and it was Enormously better than the others I had had. It wasn't my imagination. I had the last pour from one and right after that the first pour from the new bottle and the second one blew the doors off the earlier bottle.
To stock up or not to stock up? I have bought five 101s so far. I may buy more. That could be a mistake. Now I have less incentive to explore the SB 10. But I do have a supply of whiskey that I know I enjoy that I bought at a reasonable price."
So what do the rest of you think? Not so much about the ER 101, but stocking up on well loved whiskies that are in the process of disappearing? With ER 101 it was easy enough to set some aside as it is in the $20 -$25 range here, could be cheaper Stateside, I don't know about other markets. And what do you think of the differences between barrels? I have only had bourbon single barrels so far. I am not asking about specially selected SBs like the SMWS issues. I would expect that sort of thing to be quite distinctive. I am thinking more of OBs. Do they vary as much as Blanton's (all ranging from excellent to WOW!) and the Elmer T Lee (similar range, this bottle is something else.) that I spoke of above. Those are the only SBs that I have had the pleasure to have tasted even a small range. BTW. they are from the same distillery, Buffalo Trace, and are from the same mash bill. The Elmer T Lee is the older of the two, I think.
Ed wrote:..."The Eagle Rare 101 is ten years old but is not a Single Barrel. The reason the 101 is not going to be marketed in the future is that they are concentrating on the Single Barrels and other expressions that use the same whiskey aged in different ways..."
Also, they have introduced -- and are slowly taking national -- their eponymous Buffalo Trace bourbon, which approximates the Eagle Rare 101 both in age and price. The two bottlings would effectively have been competing against each other.
"...BTW, there is a 10 year old SB as well as the 17 year..."
The 17yo is NOT a single-barrel bourbon, but married from hand-selected barrels, which can be precious few -- only 1,050 bottles in 2004.
..."To stock up or not to stock up? I have bought five 101s so far. I may buy more. That could be a mistake. Now I have less incentive to explore the SB 10. But I do have a supply of whiskey that I know I enjoy that I bought at a reasonable price."
So what do the rest of you think?...
If you like it, stock up. I'll pick up a few bottles of ER101, but I enjoy the newer Buffalo Trace, so they will be more collectibles than drinking bottles. The old Wild Turkey Russell's Reserve 101 proof, on the other hand, I'll seek out now that the diluted 90-proof version is appearing more places. The old version was WT's best-value bourbon. With the WT12yo disappearing, and the RR amounting to more water for the same price (the suits at Wild Turkey are doing a pretty good job of making their line a bunch of 'I-can-live-without-'em' products), the RR 101 is worth looking for.
The Elmer T Lee is the older of the two, I think.
Correct. Blanton's is around 8 years old (it varies a little -- they select to match a taste profile, not an age), while the ETL is usually around 10, though Elmer's been known to select some as old as 14-15 years for customers who buy and bottle entire barrels.
You can always add water, but you can never take it away!
I find the ER to be slightly less sweet, slightly more "woody" than the new BT. If I could bunker some, I definitely would (hard to come by where I live). There's a trend today in lowering proof... ER101 isn't the first example of this we've seen. And I'm stocking up on the Russel's Reserve 101 as well.
The 17yo is NOT a single-barrel bourbon, but married from hand-selected barrels, which can be precious few -- only 1,050 bottles in 2004
Thanks for the correction, Tim, I didn't know that.
What does bottle of Russell's Reserve 101 cost there. It is a little too expensive (upper thirties) here to be a best value here.
A couple more thoughts about disappearing whiskey... Did you get a chance to pick up some WT Tribute last year (special Japanese bottle)? That's another release I wished I had bunkered more of. And have you had a chance to try and/or bunker some of the Old Rip Van Winkle 15/107? Another example of a lost brand (I prefer it to the new Pappy 15).
I have a chance to get the Tribute. It is still on the shelves, but at 8,800 yen (US$ 80 dollars but it feels like $88 to me) it is just too expensive. It may very well be worth every penny/yen but my budget will only cover so many things. Is it roughly twice as good as the 12 year old? It is a little less than twice as expensive. I plan to get a bottle before they disappear, but what with buying up AAA 10year old and ER 101 plus the bottles that I feel I must replace I haven't gotten to it yet. I need to get a Russell''s Reserve 101, too.
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