The fall releases of limited edition whiskeys keep coming. (Some of the others are here, here and here.)
Latest is the 2009 edition of Old Forester Birthday Bourbon, unveiled at a press event last night at The Violet Hour in Chicago. Old Forester master distiller Chris Morris walked the guests through a tasting of all three Old Forester expressions, including the new Birthday Bourbon.
Old Forester Birthday Bourbon celebrates the birth of Brown-Forman founder George Garvin Brown on September 2, 1846. It is a special selection of Old Forester barrels chosen by Morris to highlight some aspect of the bourbon palate.
“This year’s vintage release of Old Forester Birthday Bourbon is crafted from a 98 barrel batch,” said Morris. “These barrels were stored in the small warehouse B and larger warehouse J, on their 5th and 8th floors respectively. These upper floor locations exposed the barrels to a great degree of heat during the summer months which resulted in a rich, complex maturation profile.”
Unlike the standard Old Forester, which is a blend of whisky from several different years, Birthday Bourbon is a vintage-dated bourbon, hand-selected by Morris from one specific day of production. The result is a one-of-a-kind character and flavor that will never be replicated again. Its unique decanter style glass bottle is a throwback to the late 1800’s when Old Forester was first produced.
Morris selected these barrels because he thinks they show that a 12+ year-old bourbon can have a lot of flavor and barrel character without hitting you over the head with it. He considers this a softer example of what a long-aged bourbon can be.
One nice thing about Old Forester Birthday Bourbon, in this season of special editions that are priced at $90 to $150 or more per bottle, is that the suggested retail price is a mere $39.99.