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evan williams SB vs. van winkle 12 yr


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#1 alphaiii

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Posted 08 February 2005 - 06:57 PM

I was looking to pick up a bottle of good bourbon and I can't decide between the Evan Williams Single Barrel Vintage or Van Winkle Special Reserve 12 Year. The Evan is a little cheaper, but I've heard such good things about the Van Winkle that I'm stuck.

I was really impressed with the Evan Williams 1783, which is only $10 (mainly for that reason), so I imagine the single barrel is a very good bourbon for the price also. It did get very good reviews from Paul Pacult and from AlcoholReviews.com.

Which would you recommend? If there are any others you'd pick over either of these, which is still in the $25-30 price range, feel free to suggest those too.

I was also recommended Eagle Rare Single Barrel, which runs $20. I was told it's a great value at that price.

#2 AVB

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Posted 08 February 2005 - 07:09 PM

Any of those three are good bourbons and you won't be disappointed with which ever one you pick. The Evan Williams is a bit sweeter then the Van Winkle which seem to be a little spicier to me. Another good one at the high end of your scale is the Elijah Craig 18 which is $31 in my area.

What ever one you pick give us a review!

#3 alphaiii

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Posted 09 February 2005 - 11:39 AM

Any of those three are good bourbons and you won't be disappointed with which ever one you pick.  The Evan Williams is a bit sweeter then the Van Winkle which seem to be a little spicier to me.  Another good one at the high end of your scale is the Elijah Craig 18 which is $31 in my area.

What ever one you pick give us a review!

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I should point out that I'm fairly new to bourbon. The only "higher end" bourbons I've had are Woodford Reserve and Maker's Mark.

Other's I've had are Evan Williams 1783 10 Yr., Evan Williams Black Label, Jack Daniels Black Label (ok technically Tennessee sour mash), Gentleman Jack, Rebl Yell, and Wild Turkey.

Woodford was probably the only I'd drink straight, although the Evan Williams 1783 is actually very good for the price, at least in comparison to others I've had, especially those in that price range. Paul Pacult of the Spirit Journal actually gave it a 5* rating. I don't know if it's that great, but for $10 it will be my mixing bourbon as long as I can still get it.

Anyway, this may give you a better idea of what I might like best. And since I'm pretty new to bourbon, I may not enjoy the stronger ones as much as a mellower one.

Edited by alphaiii, 09 February 2005 - 11:50 AM.


#4 alphaiii

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Posted 09 February 2005 - 05:53 PM

I checked online and the Elijah Craig 18 Yr. is listed at $35. I probably won't spend that much since I am a bourbon newcomer. Most likely, I'll pass on the Van Winkle too because of the price.

I stumbled on the A.H. Hirsch Selection 13 Yr. Rye for 25.99 on the LCB website too. I was reading your review of Van Winkle Rye and you mentioned how Hirsch is disappearing, so I figured I'd mention that there was still some in the state, in case your interested.

#5 AVB

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Posted 09 February 2005 - 06:12 PM

Thanks for thinking of me but I have 3 or 4 of them stashed away already :D. The EC 18 was on sale I thought this month, but it must have been last month, at the cheaper price.

I checked online and the Elijah Craig 18 Yr. is listed at $35.  I probably won't spend that much since I am a bourbon newcomer.  Most likely, I'll pass on the Van Winkle too because of the price. 

I stumbled on the A.H. Hirsch Selection 13 Yr. Rye for 25.99 on the LCB website too.  I was reading your review of Van Winkle Rye and you mentioned how Hirsch is disappearing, so I figured I'd mention that there was still some in the state, in case your interested.

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Edited by AVB, 09 February 2005 - 06:13 PM.


#6 half full monty

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Posted 12 February 2005 - 11:21 AM

I am not a big bourbon fan, but had the opportunity to sample the EC 18 yr old on Thursday. It was the smoothest bourbon I've ever had, great nose and complex flavor.

This does not disappoint.

#7 cigardawg

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Posted 14 February 2005 - 08:46 AM

I'd pick the van winkle 12 year hands down. The Evan Williams is good, but doesn't have the smoothness of the VW12.

#8 alphaiii

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Posted 15 February 2005 - 11:17 AM

I went with the Van Winkle Special Reserve 12 Yr. This is by far the smoothest bourbon I've ever had - so smooth I've been drinking it neat. I am by no means qualified to give a detailed review, and I really couldnt tell you what I am tasting. But I can say that, to me, this bourbon has a good pronounced flavor without being overpowered by oak, and it has a smooth but long, warm finish that is really impressive. To date, the only other fairly expensive bourbon I've tried is Woodford Reserve, and while it's good, the Van Winkle blows it away.

#9 KayakinBoy

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Posted 02 September 2005 - 08:29 PM

Never had van winkle, but I was itching for something I've never had before. I remeber Rob telling me at a herf that Even williams SB was awesome, and I gotta say, I'm digging it. :thumbs:




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