Friday, March 18, 2016

Bourbon Review: Old Grand-Dad 114

Billy Hill and a buddy stopped by this place on the way home from a business meeting this week:

And had the great pleasure of meeting Bill Carter, who was clearly very up to speed on this Bourbanability.  Learned a ton hanging out with the guy as we shopped their very well rounded Bourbon section.  

I walked out with a bottle of Old Grand-Dad 114 (mainly because they did not have any Old Grand-Dad Bottoms or W.L. Weller Antique.  

But I cracked it open last night and was quite pleased.  Now, as I have said, I am not much of a fruity, nutty, woody type Bourbon analyzer.  I actually like fruit and nuts and don't really eat much wood and so, those nuances mean little to me.  Although, maybe some day I will get back to Eastern Kentucky and take a class or two from a friend @ThatBourbonGal (on twitter) and you should follow her if you want a good Bourbon eduction.  But for now, Billy Hill just classifies them as being in one of three categories (a) hot, (b) smooth (c) mix it with something like making a Kentucky Mule.  

The Old Grand-Dad 114 certainly falls into the hot category, and I rank it in there with a Bookers but, it is certainly a great joy at half the price of a bottle of Bookers, but you don't get the free wooden box.  As ThatBourbonGal taught me, you don't always have to reach for the top shelf to find good bourbon, and she was right.  I am looking forward to some more recommendations from her in the near future and I will certainly pass them on.  

But what I enjoyed most about our trip to the World Beverage store was learning about dusty hunting.  I have never heard of the term before but Bill Carter is an avid fan, plus it gives him the chance to ride around on his Harley.  What is dusty hunting? It is finding old, hole in the wall liquor stores, getting to know the owners and develop a report with them, and then getting invited down to the basement to tour the old dusty bottles that have been sitting around for years and basically forgotten about.  The more I explore this whole bourbon world, the more fascinated I am about how much there is to learn.  I guess I am going to have to make another entry in the Why Billy Hill loves Kentucky series and listing them as the pioneers for creating the whole world that is so fun to explore.  

But in the mean time, if you want a good hot bourbon that is quite nice taking in neat, reach down a shelf or two and grab yourself a bottle of Old Grand-Dad 114.  It is obviously 114 proof and distilled by the Old Grand-Dad Distillery Company in Frankfort-Clermont, KY.  I got mine for $28.  

Some interesting information I got from the OldWhiskeys website.  

"Old Grand-Dad was a real person. He was a distiller named Basil Hayden who made his name by distilling a bourbon whiskey made with a higher percentage of rye. Basil Hayden passed along the art of distilling to his son Thyme (Just pulling your leg. We don’t know his name) and then, in turn, to his grandson. It was the third generation distiller, Colonel R.B. Hayden, who honored his grandfather by naming his justly famed whiskey “Old Grand-Dad®.”  During Prohibition, Old Grand-Dad® was produced by a pharmaceutical company, the American Medicinal Sprits Co., and was one of the few distilled spirits permitted to be prescribed as medicine. It was a popular time to be sick."

Thanks for reading, this is Billy Hill here, and I like it neat.