Old Forester 1870


Intro: In 1870 George Garvin Brown created Old Forester on Louisville, KY’s famous whiskey row. In honor of that milestone year in bourbon history, we have crafted a tribute – Old Forester 1870 Original Batch – the first craft expression in the Old Forester Whiskey Row Series.

Old Forester 1870 Original Batch echoes George Garvin Brown’s original 1870 batching process. Back then, Brown batched barrels obtained from three distilleries to create a consistent flavor profile. To emulate that process today, we also select barrels from three warehouses, each barrel originating from a different day of production, with a different entry proof and a different age profile.

The three expressions of Old Forester are then batched together to craft Old Forester 1870 Original Batch. This 90-proof bourbon will be minimally filtered, to honor the processes available to George Garvin Brown at that time.

Review: This is the last one I bought from the whiskey row series…had to before JDub got his rat claws on one and did the review…the nose…it’s 90 proof and has a slight fume and hints of grain popping through. I am not getting sweetness from it like the 1910 or 1920, it seems more like the standard Old Forester. The first sip…lip burn, mouth burn, it’s like the 1920 but watered down and grainy. It’s almost offensive because it’s so thin tasting. It’s a good bourbon, not great. Second sip…no lip burn or mouth burn…it’s like a dirty barn floor. Like when you do the rub on most bourbons…it’s like that but in taste. Third sip…slight lip burn, it’s grainy, not sweet. This to me is the quintessential tasting whiskey, when I think of how whiskey tastes from an old dusty bottle behind the bar of an old west saloon, not great, maybe a hint of pheramaldahyde…ha! This is the worst of the 4 in the series and I expected that to be the case. Something about the color of the bourbon gives me the sense that this one is super young. Fourth sip…ouch on the lip burn…this bourbon is eh, I don’t enjoy it. It’s a solid 60 out of a 100 for me. It’s not one I could recommend run out and buy.

Is it worth the $?

I don’t know. I paid $46 at the exchange. I bought it because I have the whole collection. I would recommend it for that reason, or if you are curious. It’s not a daily drinker unless you find it for under $30, even then, I would rather have Eagle Rare or even Buffalo Trace. For a 90 proof bourbon it has too much heat for my tastes.