American Whiskey - Bourbon

Old Forester 86 Proof Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey

From: Kentucky, United States Liquor Review Category: Bourbon American Whiskey

Bottle/Rating Data

Rating Description

Tier 1
This is a Tier 1 score in the Whiskey category. It means the spirit has won the highest recommendation at least once and probably many times.
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Awards

San Francisco World Spirits Competition

  • 2005
  • 2006
  • 2007
  • 2010
  • 2011
  • 2012
  • 2013
  • 2014
  • 2015

Beverage Testing Institute

  • 2011
  • 2012
  • 2013

Wine Enthusiast

  • 2004
  • 2010

Proof66 Notes

The flagship Old Forester bourbon comes in at 86 proof and is the flagship bourbon having been around for well over 150 years.

Early Times Distillery began its journey as JTS Brown and Bro. founded by George Garvin Brown in 1870 believing in a market for "medicinal quality whisky." They claim to be the first to sell bourbon by the bottle rather than by the barrel.

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Rabble Reviews

This bottle has 21 ratings and 21 reviews.
Tango Tango (121)
Rating: 3.0 (2016-07-18)
Nose is strong spice ,oak ,and leather . The entry is heated spice and oak with short oak ,leather ending.. There are several better bourbons in its price range.It is mainly a mixer being too heated straight .
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BDanner BDanner (257)
Rating: 2.0 (2016-04-22)
I had a rave review ready to go on this bourbon. Simply debating if it was really worth the 4 stars I was about to give it and then the more of the pour I drank, the less I liked it. I have a theory that this juice may be super sensitive to the affects of oxygen. I opened the bottle for my first pour and the nose was great. Bananas Foster, brown sugar baking spices. Neat, despite a relatively thin mouthfeel, I got a wonderful sweet entry with coconut & marzipan and some baked confection that I can almost, but not quite, place. A mild finish with a touch of bitterness. Very enjoyable. However....After a few minutes the nose picked up the odd trademark Brown Forman latex paint note. The finish became even more bitter overriding all the great sweetness that was there at first. I've never had a whiskey change in the glass like this. We're not talking about an hour or hours, we're talking about minutes. Ice doesn't help and the bitter note completely ruins an Old Fashioned. This being the same or similar juice as the Woodford may explain why I find such wild discrepancy from bottle to bottle with it, leading me to purchase it only in 50 mls. If I get a bad one of those I'm only out $2.50 instead of $40. I was really hoping to like this, but in this price range the Evan Williams BIB and the OGD BIB are far superior in my book. Heck, I might even prefer Beam White Label to this (although it's been so long since I've had that I may be wrong).
1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • - Tango up voted your review on 2016-08-14.

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spezbaby spezbaby (36)
Rating: 4.0 (2016-03-13)
Pretty good. Not typical but good for the money
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lorax735 lorax735 (55)
Rating: 3.0 (2016-02-19)
would like to give it an extra .5 stars for value. 3.5. Good bourbon. Solid. Not great. Decent taste / flavor profile. Seems flat without enough body. limited mouth feel. Lacks presence on the nose. Best bourbon for price. I prefer a much fuller bourbon especially for first glass. this is a good on to have on hand for 2nd or 3rd pour of the night. I Much better than Beam white label. Better than Jack. On par with Beam black label although I haven't tasted side by side.But I would prefer this at price point and presentation over Beam Black. Will be testing Forester 100 proof in near future to compare.
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ducktapeguy8 ducktapeguy8 (10)
Rating: 4.0 (2016-02-11)
Nice little bit. Hint of honey
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budgetsipper budgetsipper (6)
Rating: 3.0 (2015-12-04)
Decent bourbon. I think bulleit is better. This is better than jack and jim though if that means anything to you.
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US Spirit US Spirit (74)
Rating: 5.0 (2015-11-23)
This is my personal go-to everyday bourbon. Where I live, its typically around $25 which puts it in the same territory as Jack Daniels, Wild Turkey 101, and Buffalo Trace. Taste wise, I rate it about even with Jack, but objectively this is a much, much higher quality spirit. I find Old Forester to be smooth, flavorful and well balanced. Its sweet, carmelly, woody, with a distinct (but not astringent) char note, and a nice rye note for balance. Finish is mid-length. Is this as interesting as Old Forester Signature? No. But it does everything I could ask a bourbon to do and does it nicely and at a fair price. (OF Signature is delicious but a few dollars more and a bit more challenging for me to sip). I can sip this stuff neat pretty much all day (and did so one day recently while on vacation in Las Vegas). But its also very nice over ice, in a coca cola highball, in an Old Fashioned, in a Sour, and probably even makes a passable Manhattan. Is it the BEST whiskey I've ever had for any of these things? No. Woodford and Blanton's are better neat or on the rocks, OF Signiture makes a better highball, and the best Manhattans I've had so far are made with rye. But its very good at all these things, can be found in almost any liquor store in my area, doesn't break the bank, and never leaves me feeling deprived. The experts rate this in the "First Tier" for a reason, and while the people here aren't quite as high on OF (by the star ratings), when you read the reviews, its often because they'd rather be drinking OF Signature or Woodford instead (which are both distilled from the same mash and aged in the same warehouses, though bottled at a different proof and in Woodford's case distilled at least partially in pot stills.) I rank the Signature and Woodford ahead of this as well, but the proof makes this more versatile than OF Signature for me, and Woodford is much pricier. I typically stock all 3 at home because I'm a big Brown-Forman fan apparently. I find this both smoother and more interesting than a typical NAS Straight Bourbon. The secret is probably part in the mash bill (This has a bit more rye, 18% to be precise), partly the distillation (OF is distilled with a thumper which they claim creates a smoother spirit), and a lot to do with the fact that OF is aged in a climate controlled warehouse, which gives the maker extra control over both the speed and nature of the aging. Personally I'll take this over Buffalo Trace, Ridgemont 1792, Wild Turkey 81, Beam Black, Evan Williams 1783, and even Eagle Rare (Yes I personally find Old Forester more interesting and smoother than Eagle Rare, a 10 year old single barrel bourbon). It doesn't mean I think you will like it as much as I do, but I think this is definitely worth a try for anyone curious about bourbon, or looking for a solid mid-shelf value (If nothing else this is one of the cheapest small batch bourbons around). It might end up being your go to as well. 5 Stars.
1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • - BDanner up voted your review on 2015-11-23.

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scollings scollings (97)
Rating: 5.0 (2014-06-12)
For a few dollars more, I would go with the 100 proof, but still an outstanding bourbon for the money. Ranks with Bulleit, though given a choice, I would probably take the Bulleit.
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Storcke Storcke (39)
Rating: 2.0 (2014-03-12)
I really don't find anything good about this bourbon. Yes, it has more flavor than JD, but what doesn't? It has a very unpleasant bitterness from nose to finish. There are many, many smoother and more flavorful bourbons available for $5-$8 less. And I really love OF Signature, which sells for about the same price.
2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • - BDanner up voted your review on 2016-04-21.

  • - Tango up voted your review on 2015-10-06.

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Edith MaGoo Edith MaGoo (66)
Rating: 2.0 (2014-02-15)
It's nothing special.
1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • - Tango up voted your review on 2015-10-06.

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derkerderr derkerderr (73)
Rating: 3.0 (2014-01-27)
This bourbon is just alright. There is a big gap between this and some of the premium bourbons but it is contender for the budget-minded drinker.
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Nurgle Nurgle (7)
Rating: 5.0 (2014-01-04)
This is my go to. I find it very smooth and flavorful and is a terrific neat bourbon. We recently did a taste test with old forrester, Buffalo Trace and Jim beam Black and OF and BT were a tie for 1st. Except that OF is about $15 a handle cheaper than BT.
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antiquecollector antiquecollector (32)
Rating: 3.0 (2013-08-08)
Not bad for the price.
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aslezak aslezak (27)
Rating: 4.0 (2013-02-27)
This was my go to Bourbon until they raised the price. It is now about $20/liter (was $17), which, looking at the competion, is still a good value. A Bourbon with some complexity, with a rye forward finish. Small batch before there was the distinction of small batch whiskey. Blends of 4/6/8 year old bourbons. Highly recommended. I want to give it 5 stars but there are better ones out there, albeit for more $$.
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degbert degbert (206)
Rating: 3.0 (2012-09-12)
A lot of smoke on the nose, and a hefty burn on the palate. While the brown sugar smooths that out, it still comes off a little hot. When there are better cheap bourbons, it's tough to miss the mark, if even a little.
1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • - Tango up voted your review on 2015-10-06.

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bigdanoid1 bigdanoid1 (3)
Rating: 4.0 (2012-05-22)
This was the best bourbon I had before getting into single barrel bourbons or bourbons aged for a long time.  Very smooth and good flavor.  Well worth the price!  I'd take this over Jack Daniels or Evan Williams any day!
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Irishman Irishman (316)
Rating: 3.0 (2011-04-22)
If this is the only bourbon available in the bar, then its definitely drinkable, but it doesn stand up to the likes of Blantons, Eagle Rare, or Buffalo Trace.
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dj1726 dj1726 (6)
Rating: 3.0 (2011-04-18)
Ok. Hard for me:)
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Jags007 Jags007 (5)
Rating: 3.0 (2011-04-18)
Tastes good!
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laflavor laflavor (19)
Rating: 3.0 (2011-03-27)
If you are ready to graduate from entry level whiskey and into bourbon...this is a place to start. For $5 more dollars you can get into some great stuff, but if you must spend $15, spend it here.
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ChrisCarlsson ChrisCarlsson (328)
Rating: 3.0 (2010-08-28)
Youngish with rough edges - old style If you like your whisky in the style of Jack Daniels (I know it's Tennessee. . .) and better than Jim Beam, you will like it. A good solid value for the money. A different version (somewhat) over the 100 - no diluting down the 100 does not yield the same results.
1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • - Tango up voted your review on 2015-10-06.

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Barcodes

Here are the barcodes we have collected from various sizes of this bottle. If you have additional barcodes please submit them to us!
  • 081128005009
  • 081128005160
  • 081128005139
  • 081128005085
  • 081128005047
  • 081128001063
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