I was lucky enough to track down a bottle of this Old Forester Birthday Bourbon 2016 and had a brief moment of indecisiveness when I also spotted a bottle of Hibiki 12. Wiser heads emerged and I’m sure I made the right choice with the birthday bourbon.
The Bourbon That Almost Got Away…
The funny thing is I almost missed out on this gem of a whiskey! When I originally saw the bottle on Monday, I had told the spirits manager to hold onto it until Wednesday (which happened to be payday). Needless to say, I was sick when I returned the next day to see it gone!
After a bit of finessing, I managed to get the manager on duty to go down into the basement lockup and fetch me another bottle. There is usually always another bottle somewhere so I rarely take no for an answer. The original one that slipped through my hands was a 2015, where mine is the 2016. I’ve been told the 2016 actually taste a bit better than the previous year, so hopefully my error can turn into something positive.
Lesson learned from all of this is when you see a one of these hard to track down bottles, BUY IT! Don’t think about it, just purchase and figure the rest out later! With only 14,400 bottles produced, who knows when the next time you will see it.
After I was able to get a chance to crack this open, I was not disappointed! At 48.5% alcohol, it is a slightly higher proof bourbon. But the additional proof does not give too much more heat and makes for a very pleasing pour. I pick up a lot of spice initially and hints of cinnamon as it goes down. Find additional information and tasting notes from Old Forrester below.
“Each year on September 2nd – in honor of our founder George Garvin Brown’s birthday – Old Forester releases a limited-edition, 12-year old vintage-dated expression. Old Forester Birthday Bourbon has become a must-have for bourbon enthusiasts who want to experience the ultimate in rare handcrafted bourbon. Since its introduction in 2002, Old Forester Birthday Bourbon has received unprecedented acclaim, with an impressive collection of national and international whisky honors.” – Old Forester
- Color: Deep reddish umber
- Nose: Complex and cinnamon wood spiced with a nitty chocolate, dark caramel and rich oak notes heighten with a dash of crisp citrus fruit.
- Taste: Mulled spice sweetness and fruity with bright citrus peel highlights.
- Finish: Long and warm with a lingering mulled fruit character.
Source: Old Forester
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