Bourbon; Blanton's and Buffalo Trace

Jarrett's picture
November 11, 2012 at 11:46 am

LOVE the weekly snippet about Bourbon. Living in Utah (The Land behind the Zion Curtain), my bourbon selection has been greatly reduced by our wise and compassionate state government. And NOW you know at least one of the reasons why they are called "Utards."
The 11W posting about making a "Suffering Bastard" using Buffalo Trace Bourbon brought to mind this little bit of information. DID YOU KNOW, Single barrel BT is from the same barrels as Blanton's? I have it on good authority this is so. When I tasted Blanton's Bourbon a few years ago, it instantly became my favorite bourbon. It's a bit pricey here, around $55.00 so I would also have some cheaper bourbon in the pantry as well.
Enter Buffalo Trace...(at $20-$25 a bottle). A friend of mine in the alcohol distribution industry took a tour of all the bourbon distillery's in Kentucky. He came back and told me about BT. Same barrels- BUT $25 TO $30 CHEAPER! It makes sense in a way- there are only a few bourbon distillery's and how many more bourbon labels? I'm sure all distillery's do the same thing, it would be silly to think they didn't.
However, I was skeptical. I had a blind taste test with my bourbon drinking brothers and there was perhaps a very, very small difference in the finish between the two. But this difference could have been more psychological and again, it was such a small difference, barely noticeable, so we couldn't tell any true difference between a $55 bottle and a $25. Which is why I wrote this. 
I saw Buffalo Trace on the shelves for quite awhile but never thought of buying it. I'm not opposed to trying new adult beverages but "Buffalo Trace" did not speak to me as any kind of bourbon I'd be interested in. Seriously? Buffalo Trace? I don't connect that to bourbon at all- at least someones NAME on a label logically means that there is some connection, either a historical reference, or by family...but "Buffalo Trace*?" Seemed like a stupid name for a bourbon so I never bought it.
When you go onto the Blanton's Bourbon website, you will notice that to schedule a tour of their facility you need to check out, so I don't think it's some extra-double-top-secret thing. And wow, how depressing to a bourbon drinker, and a fan of this particular bourbon, to see that Blanton's actually makes FOUR types. I would like it to be known that in Utah, they only offer the Original Single Barrel Bourbon, so this is the one that is identical to Buffalo Trace.
*While "Wild Turkey" certainly doesn't imply bourbon to me either, at least it has "wild" in the title....which, I believe, anyone that drinks has had a wild time of some least once. After drinking it the first time, Wild Turkey seemd to me, to be a very good name for it. 
Go Buckeyes! ....Go Bourbon! 

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