Review: Old Grand-Dad BiB (1997, 2006)
Old Grand-Dad Bottled in Bond
One of the first profile head scratchers for me was transitional era Old Grand-Dad. After running into a handful of 1997 Old Grand-Dad BiBs a few years ago, it was clear, straight off the nose, the profile was markedly different than current expressions. But it wasn't National Distillers candy-shop-dusty either. I ended up sending one of the bottles out as blind samples. It was well received. Guesses ranged from Old Weller Antique to dusty Grand-Dad and older Henry McKenna. As bonded products, there is no possibility of blending. The split DSP showed distillation at Clermont and bottling at the Old Grand-Dad Distillery in Frankfort which Chuck Cowdery indicated may suggest these barrels were aged at Frankfort. The current version of Old Grand-Dad lists Clermont for both the distillation and bottling facility. Breaking Bourbon compared the current to a 2013 version with split DSP and prefered the new stuff.
Old Grand-Dad Bottled in Bond - 1997
Notes: Complex nose: Smarties. Marshmallow. Vanilla. Young oak. Lemon. Plum. Orange oil. Butterscotch Life-Savers. The sugars are old and burnt. Faint motor oil. Barnyard. Plenty of boozy top notes mingling with the citrus - a little unhinged. The palate is more austere: bright lemon, well layered oak, old sugars. Hot and punchy.
Score: 7 (Recommend) You could nose this all day. The palate is a bit aggressive and lean, but the nose keeps bringing you back.
Old Grand-Dad Bottled in Bond - 2006
Notes: Much less boozy on the nose: honey, nuts (Beam-ish), brownie. More of the same on the palate with honey and toasted oak and nuts. Herbal grass spike mid-palate. The structure is more gentle and rolling. Soft entry, nice escalation, soft descent.
Score: 6 (Solid) Doesn't do anything wrong. Certainly less interesting than the 1997, but also better composed. More closely with the contemporary Beam profile - nutty and grassy.
10 - Reevaluate The Budget
9 - Stash Two (If Able)
8 - Stash One (At The Right Price)
7 - Highly Recommend It To Strangers
6 - Solid - Above Average
5 - Acceptable For The Situation
4 - Not Vocally Complaining
3 - Anything Else To Drink?
2 - Nothing Nice To Say
1 - Drain Pour