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7 hours ago, k-train said:

The ABC stores here in NC are basically serve yourself now... kinda like the grocery self-checkout has been for years.

You just go in, grab what you want, then scan the barcode on the bottle yourself, place it in those brown paper bags yourself, and pay with your card.

You in Charlotte?  Didn’t know that was available.  I usually goto frugal mcdoogle in SC to get liquor

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Last night, I cracked open the Angel's Envy & finally got to try it for the first time ever.

It's always hard to judge something right out of a freshly opened bottle, but this was pretty solid right out the gate. Didn't get much beyond cherry, plum, and a slight touch of oak on the nose, and a very faint hint of fresh green apple. I was kinda blown away by how silky smooth this once once I took my first sip. While there's not any particular flavor that jumps out,  it's got a pleasant, very well-balanced kinda buttery chocolate thing going on with just a hint of butterscotch & vanilla, plus a little more of that stone fruit lingering beneath all of that. There's practically no burn whatsoever on this, with just the tiniest bit of spice on the finish.

Overall, it's a super easy sipper. I totally understand why this is often thought of as a nicer option for folks who are wanting to get into bourbon. It's really easy to drink, and quite honestly, in that regard I think it's exactly what something like Woodford Reserve wishes it was.

That said, I prefer bourbon with a little more character than this... which is probably evident from my earlier post mentioning I was actually hunting for Elijah Craig Barrel Proof or Old Forrester 1920 when I opted to give the Angel's Envy a try instead. So while I will definitely enjoy having this around as an easy sipper, it's not likely to be something I ever spend $55 on again.

I can get Ridgemont 1792 to check all the boxes this does as a smooth & easy drinking bourbon. But the 1792 actually offers just a touch more sweetness & vanilla/caramel, slightly more spice, and it does that at essentially half the cost of Angel's Envy. On top of that, the 1792 is always in stock... which can't be said about the AE.

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Also had another glass of the Mi Campo Reposado last night, and it's kind of amazing.

It impressed the **** outta my wife, which is hard to do considering her history as a bar manager.

As she pointed out, just drinking it neat it has so much complexity that it seriously tastes just like a real, fresh, house-made margarita all by itself.

At $25 for a fifth, it's sorta unbeatable. I'm curious to try their blanco next.

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  • 2 weeks later...

On her way home from work today, my wife was making a pitstop by the ABC store to pick up a bottle of Baccoo 5 year dark rum to replenish the one we've nearly killed. On a complete whim, I half joking asked her to pick me up a bottle of Elijah Craig Barrel Proof if they actually had it... totally not expecting it to be there, because I asked about it the last time I was in the store (about 2 weeks ago) and they said they didn't have any clue whatsoever when this batch would be coming in, if at all. Lo and behold...
0-1.thumb.jpeg.7b1948dc2169ff1f0ee179d3d0026b28.jpeg

For those not aware of this one, Heaven Hill releases this Barrel Proof version of 12 year old Elijah Craig in limited batches just three times per year. So every year there's a A batch (released in January), B batch (released in May), and C batch (released in September). Given the nature of releasing like this, each batch varies in both flavor & proof from other years and even from other batches during the same year. Basically, they are making a unique offering with every batch they release this way. For someone in a state with ABC stores, and thus no chance of getting store picks, this sort of thing is about as close as it gets.

This is the latest offering, batch B520 (B because it's the 2nd batch to come out this year, 520 because it was the batch released in May of 2020, or 5/20. It's 127.2 proof & retails for about $60.

There's already been some rumblings from various bourbon review sites that it's an early contender to win a bunch of Bourbon of the Year awards. After tasting it, I fully understand why.

So far I've only had one 2oz pour of this, and that's the initial pour... meaning it hasn't even had a chance to get any air in the bottle... and yet I was blown away. This just might be the best bourbon I've ever had in my life, and I'm strongly considering heading down to the ABC store to stockpile a few more bottles. If this is in your area and you're a fan of barrel proof bourbons, definitely give it a try.

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On 7/4/2020 at 1:14 AM, k-train said:

This is the latest offering, batch B520 (B because it's the 2nd batch to come out this year, 520 because it was the batch released in May of 2020, or 5/20. It's 127.2 proof & retails for about $60.

There's already been some rumblings from various bourbon review sites that it's an early contender to win a bunch of Bourbon of the Year awards. After tasting it, I fully understand why.
 

Great. Big fan of ECBP. Now I really regret leaving this one on the shelf last week. B519 I really like, even though it runs hot. 

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1 hour ago, Brewyerown said:

Great. Big fan of ECBP. Now I really regret leaving this one on the shelf last week. B519 I really like, even though it runs hot. 

I cant speak on how this compares to the B519 since I never tried that batch. I know the two prior to this one, C919 & A120, were apparently super hot... both around 136 proof or higher. Per reviews, The B520 has a pretty similar taste profile to the A120, but is much nicer to drink as the A120 was a little too hot to allow the flavors to shine.

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The Larceny Barrel Proof batch B520 is also supposed to be pretty spectacular. So much so that many “expert” reviewers are suggesting it above most other regularly available high proof & barrel proof wheated bourbons (like Makers Mark Cask Strength), and placing it near the same level of things that are basically impossible to find now and/or extremely expensive on the secondary market... like any Weller (Full Proof, 107 Antique, or 12 year).

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2 hours ago, Passprotection said:

Have a decent bourbon collection that I'll post later for eye candy... Got this 1982 beauty today from a buddy. It's delicious. 

IPoXg16.jpg

 

Man, you have me very intrigued & slightly confused.

I know the decanter is from '82, but that bottle is what Wild Turkey used for their Kentucky Spirit from the time it came out in '94-95 until they redesigned the bottle in 2019.

So I can't tell whether you are saying you got 38 year old bourbon (if so, I have some questions), or if you are just using a 38 year old decanter for some Kentucky Spirit.

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On 7/4/2020 at 1:14 AM, k-train said:

On her way home from work today, my wife was making a pitstop by the ABC store to pick up a bottle of Baccoo 5 year dark rum to replenish the one we've nearly killed. On a complete whim, I half joking asked her to pick me up a bottle of Elijah Craig Barrel Proof if they actually had it... totally not expecting it to be there, because I asked about it the last time I was in the store (about 2 weeks ago) and they said they didn't have any clue whatsoever when this batch would be coming in, if at all. Lo and behold...
0-1.thumb.jpeg.7b1948dc2169ff1f0ee179d3d0026b28.jpeg

For those not aware of this one, Heaven Hill releases this Barrel Proof version of 12 year old Elijah Craig in limited batches just three times per year. So every year there's a A batch (released in January), B batch (released in May), and C batch (released in September). Given the nature of releasing like this, each batch varies in both flavor & proof from other years and even from other batches during the same year. Basically, they are making a unique offering with every batch they release this way. For someone in a state with ABC stores, and thus no chance of getting store picks, this sort of thing is about as close as it gets.

This is the latest offering, batch B520 (B because it's the 2nd batch to come out this year, 520 because it was the batch released in May of 2020, or 5/20. It's 127.2 proof & retails for about $60.

There's already been some rumblings from various bourbon review sites that it's an early contender to win a bunch of Bourbon of the Year awards. After tasting it, I fully understand why.

So far I've only had one 2oz pour of this, and that's the initial pour... meaning it hasn't even had a chance to get any air in the bottle... and yet I was blown away. This just might be the best bourbon I've ever had in my life, and I'm strongly considering heading down to the ABC store to stockpile a few more bottles. If this is in your area and you're a fan of barrel proof bourbons, definitely give it a try.

Hey @k-train!

I was wondering if you had a chance to sip on this bourbon a little more and wanted your thoughts on it. I'm still a bourbon newbie, but have been drinking (and really enjoying) Buffalo Trace. I've had the Elijah Craig Small Batch and pretty much echo the sentiments you posted about it earlier in this thread. It's good, but maybe too smooth. I've found a couple of bottles of this barrel proof at a local liquor store and wanted to see if you still thought it was as good as the initial tasting.

 

Thanks!

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2 hours ago, Goober Pyle said:

Hey @k-train!

I was wondering if you had a chance to sip on this bourbon a little more and wanted your thoughts on it. I'm still a bourbon newbie, but have been drinking (and really enjoying) Buffalo Trace. I've had the Elijah Craig Small Batch and pretty much echo the sentiments you posted about it earlier in this thread. It's good, but maybe too smooth. I've found a couple of bottles of this barrel proof at a local liquor store and wanted to see if you still thought it was as good as the initial tasting.

 

Thanks!

Man, I love it more & more every time I have it. I definitely plan on picking up another bottle or two at some point soon so I’m not s.o.l. once I finish off that initial bottle.

Have you tried many barrel strength bourbons before? If so, I’d absolutely recommend it. Even if you’re not used to drinking bourbons that strong but are looking to branch out into that world, I can’t think of one much better to start with than this.

Just keep in mind it is 127.2 proof, which is significantly stronger than the regular small batch Elijah Craig (96 proof) or Buffalo Trace (90 proof), so you won’t be able to drink it in quite the same way one might those two.

I love some 90-100 proof bourbons, but to me, it really becomes a different experience once you get to the 120 proof & up range. Flavors kind of explode more noticeably with just a small sip when drinking barrel proof bourbon. Sometimes they can be super high proof & the heat can be hard to deal with even for someone who’s a bit of a high proof lover, but I think this particular batch of ECBP (batch B520) is not only incredibly delicious but also surprisingly smooth for a barrel proof bourbon. 

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22 hours ago, k-train said:

Man, I love it more & more every time I have it. I definitely plan on picking up another bottle or two at some point soon so I’m not s.o.l. once I finish off that initial bottle.

Have you tried many barrel strength bourbons before? If so, I’d absolutely recommend it. Even if you’re not used to drinking bourbons that strong but are looking to branch out into that world, I can’t think of one much better to start with than this.

Just keep in mind it is 127.2 proof, which is significantly stronger than the regular small batch Elijah Craig (96 proof) or Buffalo Trace (90 proof), so you won’t be able to drink it in quite the same way one might those two.

I love some 90-100 proof bourbons, but to me, it really becomes a different experience once you get to the 120 proof & up range. Flavors kind of explode more noticeably with just a small sip when drinking barrel proof bourbon. Sometimes they can be super high proof & the heat can be hard to deal with even for someone who’s a bit of a high proof lover, but I think this particular batch of ECBP (batch B520) is not only incredibly delicious but also surprisingly smooth for a barrel proof bourbon. 

I've never had barrel proof before. I'm going to pick up a bottle, though. I'll be really conservative with the pour. Lol. I've been drinking the Buffalo Trace with just a little ice in a tumbler and have really enjoyed it that way. 

 

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52 minutes ago, Goober Pyle said:

I've never had barrel proof before. I'm going to pick up a bottle, though. I'll be really conservative with the pour. Lol. I've been drinking the Buffalo Trace with just a little ice in a tumbler and have really enjoyed it that way. 

 

Right on! I'm looking forward to haring how you like it.

I'd suggest trying the ECBP neat, but just go for a sip first to get acclimated to the heat & see how the flavor kind of explodes immediately on your palate. If it still seems too hot after a few sips, try using a straw or dropper to add just literally 2-4 drops of water. That'll mellow it out noticeably because it's lowering the proof a bit, and often can even make some other flavors stand out.

You can always start with a neat pour that you add like 3 or 4 drops to. Get used to that, then try adding just 2 or 3 drops for a bit, then down to just 1 drop, and the next thing you know, you're not adding any drops because you've acclimated your nose and palate to barrel strength bourbon.

I only bring this up so much because I have a close friend who doesn't doesn't ever drink bourbon neat, with a splash of water, or even on the rocks. The only way I've ever seen him drink it is with Coke. Once I had a bottle of Booker's & was telling him about it. He said he'd like to try it, so I poured a little bit into a tumbler for him to sip. I literally had spent about an hour telling him how you have to sip it slowly because it's barrel proof & incredibly intense compared to anything he was used to. Yet after pouring his glass, I went to pour mine & as soon as I looked up, I saw him throwing his back like a shot. I yelled, "Nooooooo!!!!" but it was too late. He immediately spit the Booker's out all over the place & looked like he just tried to swallow bowl full of bees or something, whining about how his mouth was on fire.

Not only did he do the very thing I told him not to do, literally right after I said it... he wasted a perfectly good pour of Booker's. Shameful.

Since then, I'm always sure to warn folks trying barrel strength bourbon for the first time to be careful, and not as foolish as my friend was. :lol:

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Thanks man!

I really appreciate the advice. It's amazing how our tastes change as we get older. 25+ years ago, there's no way I would have enjoyed and appreciated a good bourbon. Especially neat or even with a little water or ice.

I'll be sure and update you when I get it and give it a try. I have found that just from the 10-15 different ones that I have tried, that quality matters and I like the ones with a little "character" to them. The super smooth ones are good, but I do enjoy when you can taste the different flavors. 

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15 hours ago, Goober Pyle said:

Thanks man!

I really appreciate the advice. It's amazing how our tastes change as we get older. 25+ years ago, there's no way I would have enjoyed and appreciated a good bourbon. Especially neat or even with a little water or ice.

I'll be sure and update you when I get it and give it a try. I have found that just from the 10-15 different ones that I have tried, that quality matters and I like the ones with a little "character" to them. The super smooth ones are good, but I do enjoy when you can taste the different flavors. 

It gets pretty cool once your nose & palate develop enough to recognize certain profiles from various distilleries. Makes doing blind tastes really interesting & fun, and helps you figure out what you really enjoy the most.

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On 7/4/2020 at 1:14 AM, k-train said:

On her way home from work today, my wife was making a pitstop by the ABC store to pick up a bottle of Baccoo 5 year dark rum to replenish the one we've nearly killed. On a complete whim, I half joking asked her to pick me up a bottle of Elijah Craig Barrel Proof if they actually had it... totally not expecting it to be there, because I asked about it the last time I was in the store (about 2 weeks ago) and they said they didn't have any clue whatsoever when this batch would be coming in, if at all. Lo and behold...
0-1.thumb.jpeg.7b1948dc2169ff1f0ee179d3d0026b28.jpeg

For those not aware of this one, Heaven Hill releases this Barrel Proof version of 12 year old Elijah Craig in limited batches just three times per year. So every year there's a A batch (released in January), B batch (released in May), and C batch (released in September). Given the nature of releasing like this, each batch varies in both flavor & proof from other years and even from other batches during the same year. Basically, they are making a unique offering with every batch they release this way. For someone in a state with ABC stores, and thus no chance of getting store picks, this sort of thing is about as close as it gets.

This is the latest offering, batch B520 (B because it's the 2nd batch to come out this year, 520 because it was the batch released in May of 2020, or 5/20. It's 127.2 proof & retails for about $60.

There's already been some rumblings from various bourbon review sites that it's an early contender to win a bunch of Bourbon of the Year awards. After tasting it, I fully understand why.

So far I've only had one 2oz pour of this, and that's the initial pour... meaning it hasn't even had a chance to get any air in the bottle... and yet I was blown away. This just might be the best bourbon I've ever had in my life, and I'm strongly considering heading down to the ABC store to stockpile a few more bottles. If this is in your area and you're a fan of barrel proof bourbons, definitely give it a try.

I picked one of these up a few weeks ago, and finally cracked it open tonight. I'm generally a fan of Elijah Craig, but did not love the A120 or the B519 (I did not try last year's C). I went into this with tempered expectations, despite the hype.

This is an incredible bourbon! This is up there with the best bourbons I've ever had. Absolute perfection, and a steal at this price point. 

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On 7/21/2020 at 8:49 AM, k-train said:

It gets pretty cool once your nose & palate develop enough to recognize certain profiles from various distilleries. Makes doing blind tastes really interesting & fun, and helps you figure out what you really enjoy the most.

I know that I am still a bourbon newb and don’t have your experienced palette, but that is, without a doubt, the best bourbon I have ever tasted. I took your advice and added just a few drops of water to about 3 ounces. So good. I’ll be heading back to add another bottle, but will definitely savor this one. The higher proof definitely means you have to sip, but it is excellent. Thanks for the heads up and the advice. 

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2 hours ago, VTCrunkler said:

K, you got me any Pappy Van Winkle?

To be completely honest, Pappy really ain't worth the hype or the price tag IMO. While I do feel fortunate that I was actually able to try it once upon a time, and it is undoubtable really, really good... it's just seriously not soooo much better than a ton of other really good bourbons that it justifies the kind of hype and/or price surrounding it.

If you were wanting to get something in that general ballpark, you could always just spend a few hundred on the secondary market to pick up a bottle of Weller Antique 107 & a bottle of Weller 12 year. If you're somehow lucky enough to find these at retail, it'd be about $60-$100 total, but finding them at that price these days is like winning the lottery. Blend those two together & you have what's called "Poor Man's Pappy"... since it's the same bourbon Buffalo Trace uses to make Pappy, but just not aged as long.

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1 hour ago, Goober Pyle said:

I know that I am still a bourbon newb and don’t have your experienced palette, but that is, without a doubt, the best bourbon I have ever tasted. I took your advice and added just a few drops of water to about 3 ounces. So good. I’ll be heading back to add another bottle, but will definitely savor this one. The higher proof definitely means you have to sip, but it is excellent. Thanks for the heads up and the advice. 

So glad to hear this! I'm always happy to help & super stoked that you're digging the barrel proof.

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4 hours ago, DawgBone said:

I picked one of these up a few weeks ago, and finally cracked it open tonight. I'm generally a fan of Elijah Craig, but did not love the A120 or the B519 (I did not try last year's C). I went into this with tempered expectations, despite the hype.

This is an incredible bourbon! This is up there with the best bourbons I've ever had. Absolute perfection, and a steal at this price point. 

The ECBP B520 really is something special, and I'm with you that I think it's probably one of the best I've had & a freaking incredible value.

I'm really intrigued to see how the C920 compares when that arrives in September.

I still haven't gotten around to picking up the Larceny B520 yet, but it's supposed to be really good, too (like the best thing to that's ever come out under the Larceny brand-type good).

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