Small-Batch Bourbons Creating a Splash

July 9, 2013

When the martini lunch was popular, you couldn’t find a small-batch bourbon. They’ve only been around and in the mainstream for a little over a decade, at least with the term “small-batch”. Many small production bourbons have been created for many years, but there wasn’t a name for these amazing creations from the best distilleries in America.

It all started with Booker Noe. He’s the one that coined small-batch when his company, Jim Beam, created four limited-production bourbons, which have become very popular. The four they created were:

•    Baker’s – Seven Year Old
•    Basil Hayden’s – Eight Year Old
•    Knob Creek – Nine Year Old
•    Booker’s – Six to Eight Years Old and 121 to 127 proof

All four of these bourbons came directly from the barrel without any filtering. This helped to keep the bourbons pure and perfect. It wasn’t a surprise that Booker Noe created these first small-batch choices considering he always had a small collection of his own creations. Many were found in what he called the “sweet spot” of the Jim Beam warehouses.

He used to bottle some of his personal favorites during the Christmas season and give them away to his family, friends and employees. This is what started the small-batch craze because one of those bottles ended up in the hands of someone that told Booker to start selling it.

Many small-batch bourbons are found on the market today ranging from the lower priced choices listed above to higher priced choices, such as the A.H. Hirsch. This is a 20-year-old choice and runs about $2,600. It’s very hard to find and many collectors would love to get their hands on a bottle of this special creation. Other small-batch bourbons include:

•    Pappy Van Winkle’s – 23 Year Old for $240
•    Hudson Baby Bourbon Whiskey – $45
•    Four Roses – $35
•    Woodford Reserve’s Masters Collection – Three to Five Year for $90
•    Black Maple Hill – 16 Year Old for $125
•    Angels Envy – Four to Six Year Old for $43

These are just a few of the many small-batch choices. Whiskey lovers find these bourbons much better than a typical choice and well worth the extra cost.

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