Jul 27, 2017

Old Grand Dad 114...

Old Grand Dad 114 (57.0%): Last fall you will remember how the info got leaked about Beam Suntory planning the "probable" discontinuation of the Old Grand Dad 114 and how they opened the gates of hell all of a sudden with that rumor... Fans went nuts, bottles flew out of the shelves across the country, Beam Suntory got accused of trying to save the juice for Basil Hayden and then a few weeks later they were like "We didn't say anything... It wasn't true... All rumors". Well, it wasn't the first time Beam Suntory pulled off something like that but at least everything calmed down quickly after their official announcement. 114 was back in stores and most importantly without a price increase... Well, we will see about that in the future...

Anyway, Old Grand Dad is distilled from a mash-bill of 63% corn, 27% rye and %10 malted barley which is the exact same mash-bill Beam Suntory uses for Basil Hayden. The line-up includes a 43% entry product and a 50% Bottled in Bond version as well besides the 114. For some unknown reason I still remember tasting the 114 for the first time in Toulouse, France... I must have liked it a lot.

Color: Medium amber, wildflower honey.

Nose: Vanilla, dry grass, ground cloves and cinnamon. Cooked prunes, Zante currants and chalk. Very rye forward... Gardening soil, chestnut honey and vintage hardwood furniture. This is good, very good... A few drops of water and now it noses significantly sweeter, with more corn driven notes and less wood influence. Corn syrup, crystallized ginger candy and rock candies. Orange zest and sweetened lemon juice. That odd and weirdly nice smell of polished old solid wood counter of a dive bar.

Palate: Hot at this abv but not numbing... Sweet and tart. Dried cranberries, tart red apples and Christmas cake spices. After adding water we get massive amount of salted caramel drops. Allspice and cloves follow. Poached apples, cinnamon Altoids and mild red pepper flakes.

Finish: Long with lightly toasted wood, burnt sugar and aged rum.

Overall: Till now I always considered myself as an Old Grand Dad BIB fan but now I think I should do a side by side tasting to confirm it again. Because this is a very good bourbon... If you also consider the price tag attached to it I don't see too much competition around this bottle. It is a little rough and somewhat uneasy in general but I'll take it as part of its charm. I am glad that at the end Beam Suntory decided to continue to bottle 114 but I kinda fear that it was a temporary fix to calm down the fan base because to be honest this bourbon is too good to be true for its price.

Price: $28