American Whiskey - Bourbon

Old Forester Signature 100 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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San Francisco World Spirits Competition

  • 2006
  • 2008
  • 2010
  • 2011
  • 2012
  • 2013
  • 2014
  • 2015

Beverage Testing Institute

  • 2007
  • 2012
  • 2013

Wine Enthusiast

  • 2004
  • 2013

Proof66 Notes

Old Forester Signature bourbon is is a re-branding of their 100 proof "expression" meant to honor founder George Garvin Brown.

Despite the high proof (or because of it), the 2013 Beverage Testing Institute announced it as "vibrant" and would "shine in cocktails."

Early Times Distillery began its journey as JTS Brown and Bro.

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Rabble Reviews

This bottle has 18 ratings and 18 reviews.
KaiserSoze KaiserSoze (281)
Rating: 4.5 (2016-10-12)
I’ve never tried to the standard 86 proof version & after buying the Signature, I don’t think I ever will! Both were side-by-side on the bottom shelf at my local supermarket, with only a $3 difference, so this was an easy choice. Is this in the same category as Blanton’s, Knob Creek SB, or Four Roses SB? Of course not, but it’s not far off! Neat, it holds it’s own very well. And at $23, it’s something you don’t feel guilty about mixing in a Manhattan or Old Fashioned – something it does quite well by the way! In a match-up of the best bourbon’s under $25, this is just behind WT101 IMHO, but not by much! This gets 4 stars for the overall taste and mix-ability and another half-star for the price!
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Cranecreek Cranecreek (230)
Rating: 2.7 (2016-10-09)
This Bourbon is a Brown/Foreman product, the same base whiskey that is a part of Woodfords Reserve (a great Bourbon !) When first nosed this product is quite promising with Vanilla, Butterscotch, some sweet Oak and leather. Unfortunately these aromas do not quite carry over to the taste. The great nose turns into a hot peppery Rye heavy taste. All the right ingredients are present but they seem young and wild and do not meld together. The experience is like an imitation of a mature Bourbon. I can't get past the hot quality even with lots of ice/dilution. Once the burn is toned down, sadly any tastes are also. It is 100 proof, but other 100 proof Bourbons are quite drinkable even without dilution. I believe this is a base type whiskey, very good blended with other barrels but not a stand alone Bourbon.
1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • - TheFirstTen up voted your review on 2016-09-20.

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Review Comments
TheFirstTen (2016-09-20):
Thanks for the review of Old Forester. I was curious, have you revisited this bottle since the review? If so, does it still rate 2 stars for you?

Cranecreek (2016-09-20):
That is a good question 1-10- beacause I always have felt I sold this one short. No I have not had any of this since my review, but some of my reviews I copied from notes from a few years back. As I think about it this whiskey was quite like the McKenna BIB which I liked very much. I may revisit this Forrester again due to your question. Quite astute on your part!

TheFirstTen (2016-09-20):
Be sure to keep us in the loop. Looking forward to reading your updated tasting notes.

PiggDogg PiggDogg (14)
Rating: 5.0 (2016-06-25)
Good, rock-solid, proper, excellent table Bourbon of the first caliber. It is a best buy for the price considering tasting qualities & price. I love this Old Forester Signature Bourbon Whiskey. This is as good as price & taste can get in the whisk(e)y world. Get it. You won't be sorry.
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lorax735 lorax735 (56)
Rating: 4.0 (2016-03-25)
A very good solid bourbon. So much value for the price. It is a big step up from the standard bottling. Almost like it's a completely different bourbon. Takes everything from the standard bottling and improved it. A great drink neat. No additional alcohol burn from this one. Will always keep a bottle of this on my shelf. Highly recommended.
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Muncher Muncher (608)
Rating: 4.0 (2016-02-13)
I see the 86 proof Old Forester everywhere, but really have trouble finding the Signature 100 proof so I snatched this bottle up when I came across it (on sale for $23.39); it was also the last one the store had. I'm glad I bought it because it's unique and quite tasty. I think it's unique in that it seems to be half Tennessee and half Kentucky. On the nose and palate there are traits reminiscent of Jack Daniels (butterscotch and banana taffy) and also Fighting Cock bourbon (rye/cayenne pepper spice). I have a bottle of both Jack and Fighting Cock so I'm tempted to mix the two in a tumbler and see how close I can get! The other characteristics are pretty standard (vanilla, oak, leather). Overall I like the balance of this bourbon; it's bold, spicy, and lingers on the finish. It does have a little heat, but I don't find it unpleasant given the big flavor profile that this bourbon has.
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  • - KaiserSoze up voted your review on 2016-03-21.

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ducktapeguy8 ducktapeguy8 (10)
Rating: 3.0 (2016-02-11)
A lot sharper than the 86
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US Spirit US Spirit (75)
Rating: 5.0 (2015-12-02)
Yes this is even better than the regular Old Forester. Old Forester Signature is more expensive, a little less smooth, and not quite as versatile, but its has a stronger, more complex flavor. It is very sweet, and it tastes surprisingly fruity, but in a deep rich kind of way as if it were aged in apple or cherry wood instead of oak. Weird as it sounds, Prof Cocktail is spot on when he says he detects peach. I thought he was nuts till I actually tried this stuff and got a note of peach myself. There is also a yeasty almost bready smell and taste to this and a lot of rye spice. There's a tiny bit of grass and sometimes some vanilla or caramel (you don't always taste that through the fruitiness), but the presence of the wood is muted and its never bitter. The color is very dark and OF Signature coats the bottom of the glass almost as if it were a Pot Still spirit or a maybe cask strength, yet this is quite smooth for a 100 proof spirit, easily beating Knob Creek or Wild Turkey 101 in that regard, although not quite on the level of Four Roses Single Barrel in that regard. It's great neat, great over ice, I don't usually mix bourbon this strong and this good, but I did pour this with diet coke once, and that is actually a delicious combination. (I was tailgating at a Jets game don't judge me:) ) I feel like my description isn't quite doing OF Signature justice as this is basically one of my top 4 or 5 Bourbons and its the cheapest of my personal top shelf (here top shelf= my personal favorites in the liquor store this is probably more of a mid shelf). When I can find this its usually $30 which puts it in the league of a bunch of really heavy hitters of all sorts from Eagle Rare to Elijah Craig to Knob Creek (plus Woodford can be had for another $3 if you look around and are patient). For all that this is still so good I think its worth a blind buy at least once from most serious bourbon lovers. It MAY turn out to be a favorite for you too. Plus I STOLE my last bottle at $22. I'm only one person and maybe even eccentric in some of my tastes, but this is one of my all time favorites. Five out of Five stars.
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Yankel W. Yankel W. (75)
Rating: 3.0 (2015-09-08)
The bottle nose was old soured gym socks, but it changed in the glass to ethanol and wood. The oak is in check and not overpowering like a Henry McKenna BIB 10 yr. First taste is immediately sweet, and sweet, with oak coming in but not too much oak. The first swallow (and downed) is peppery, sweet and oak out the nostrils on the exhale. Again nothing overpowering. Now, for the adjustment to the bell curve. This is obviously bourbon, but - Old Grand Dad Bond has a nose that is so fragrantly superior, at $5 or $6 less per bottle, and EW BIB is a pleasant bourbon at even less, I see no reason to purchase this middling bourbon. So, I am with Carlsson on this one. On into the tasting, the oak comes in later as bitter. In any case, it is all somewhat subjective. Doesn't smell nearly as good as Old Grand Dad BIB 100 proof. So, you could spend less and get a better nose and even taste or spend a bit more and get Buffalo Run Bourbon. It is viscous and coats the glass.One can buy cheap rums that coat the glass. The nose eventually improves - about 30 minutes to vanilla sweet. I prefer Old Grand Dad BIB over this. OGD has a certified age statement, and doesn’t smell like a soured old sock when the bottle is cracked. My Fascist Socialist GUM liquor store has this listed as BIB, which it is absolutely not. There is no age statement and it has the rough edge of a young bourbon. Now, I consider this, in most instances, a better buy than one of the overpriced designer vodkas selling for $30+ a .75 liter. And, if you like this, good on ya! I would rate it a better buy than EW SB 2006 Vintage at $10 more. But, that's me and I didn't give it much there.
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  • - Tango up voted your review on 2016-10-07.

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scollings scollings (98)
Rating: 5.0 (2014-09-13)
Simply an outstanding Bourbon, and ranks with Bulleit in terms of bang for the buck.
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Nurgle Nurgle (7)
Rating: 5.0 (2014-03-06)
Fantastic bourbon. The normal OF is my go to, this is better, but the price difference is noticeable over the regular. To me this is a special occasion bourbon, neat or with a small splash of water.
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aslezak aslezak (28)
Rating: 4.0 (2013-03-22)
Old Forester 86 is my favorite daily pour. This 100 is equally smooth, yet has more condensed flavor. In Houston it is hard to find, I gave up and paid $27 for the 750ml (I used to get 86 for $27/1.75l). It's worth picking up, but at this price there are other great bourbons such as Eagle Rare and Ridgement 1792.
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ProfessorCocktail ProfessorCocktail (69)
Rating: 4.0 (2012-10-01)
Spicy and assertive, with flavors of corn, peach and oak. Despite the higher-than-normal 100 proof, this is a smooth whiskey with a pleasant, medium-long finish. Not a bourbon I would drink every day, but dependable all the same.

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nathanbruley nathanbruley (6)
Rating: 4.0 (2012-06-26)
Really good, flavorful, FULL bodied, just like Clints aunt. Great price, great drink
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scalihan scalihan (44)
Rating: 5.0 (2012-06-06)
Wow. Ive been Shelled by this one!!! Where have you been all my life. Has some burn on the back end (as you would expect a 100 proof to be) but the flavor couldnt more indicative of a true Kentucky bourbon. Throw one cube in to tame the beast and enjoy a very tasty complete bourbon. Clint Shell rules.
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jacbri jacbri (1)
Rating: 4.0 (2011-12-30)
really Chris...common man...this stuff is the value bourbon of the decade. Old woodford barrells (rumor?). This bouron is mixed thick and will coat your glass even with an ice cube or two. After trying many cheaper bourbons in this category (old fitgerald/old grandad/elijah craig 12/w.l weller/ etc etc) we still keep coming back, this is my weekend pour. I almost cried when the local store ran out for 4 months. There is a strong oak flavor, and smoothness that lingers to this bourbon. It has a similar profile to woodford (pot stills?) anyhow I can say that most are not dissapointed with this bottle. I get it for 14.99 so I cant complain. Yes 1.75L are available, however you have to search it out, i think I saw one for $22-23 making a ridiculous bourbon even better. I tell every shop about this stuff (Brown foreman Co if you are reading this send me a t-shirt) I practically buy out the local store and beg others to get it. If you are wondering, I am a practicioner, although I do not prescribe OF signature to my patients....for some of them its pretty darn tempting, so there you have it. Go get some, put it in another bottle with a cork and tell everyone you spent $$$$$
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jordanpoop jordanpoop (1)
Rating: 5.0 (2011-08-02)
Love it! A little more burn but I like it that way! A well-developed taste. A must try for whiskey lovers!
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tsmosher tsmosher (1)
Rating: 4.0 (2011-05-10)
This is an excellent bourbon and one of the best values for a BiB bourbon. This is much better than the 86-proof expression. I prefer it with a splash of water or an ice cube to open it up. If they sold this in a 1.75L bottle (in my neck of the woods), it'd probably be my daily pour.
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ChrisCarlsson ChrisCarlsson (329)
Rating: 2.0 (2010-08-28)
Youngish with rough edges, as I said, 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.
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