A Bourbonr Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving Bourbonr Challenge

Last year I ran a post about pairing bourbon with each Thanksgiving course (make sure to read it before you start cooking or eating). This year I’d like to take a different approach. Instead of giving a recipe or a pairing I’d like to propose a challenge. The challenge: open your limited edition bourbon that has been sitting on your shelf for a “special occasion”. Forget resell value. Forget the hype. It’s time to drink. There’s no better time to imbibe than with family, friends and turkey.


I believe we could see a drop in secondary prices if people opened more bottles to drink. Sure, it seems counter-intuitive to decrease the “supply” and decrease price. Here’s my reasoning. Once people drink these expensive bourbons they’ll realize it’s not worth hundreds of dollars.  Sure, Old Rip Van Winkle 10 is great bourbon. But I can name a dozen bourbons just as good (if not better) that you don’t have to pay $300. Haven’t gotten a chance to overpay for bourbon? Try one of these bottles first.

It’s time we stop paying exorbitant prices for incrementally better bourbon. The bourbon train is loose on the track and it’s up to us to Denzel it. While we’re at it, might as well throw a cheesy hashtag out #BourbonrThanksgiving


    Great idea – seems like as good a time as any to enjoy some Birthday Bourbon with the family (not toooo much though, I’ll need some for Christmas).

    hear hear Blake! I didn’t even try for any of the BTAC or PVW brands this year. Great bourbons (and ryes), but, well, I’ve been very fortunate two years in a row to receive allocations, and I think others deserved their chance. I have drank them all, mostly (I still have a little bit of the PVW 15 I got last year, but, not much), and shared them with friends. I’m in complete agreement with you. We need to drink the unicorns to prevent them from being unicorns. There is so much grat bourbon available, hoarding one particular label just seems so counter-intuitive. Granted, I have been fortunate and have had the opportunity to taste all of those items I wanted, and given the opportunity to purchase a PVW 20 or an ER17, at retail normal retail price, I would. I’ll still take ETL over the unicorns any day of the week.

    Folks – if you are hoarding these bottles, why? Drink them, that’s what Pappy would do!

    “…at a profit if we can, at a loss if we must, but always fine bourbon.” The best way to honor fine bourbon is to pour it among friends and enjoy it!

    Be well, and happy #BourbonrThanksgiving

    Even better! Give a cherished bottle to someone this season. I sent a best friend an ORVW 10 because his chance of ever getting one is slim to none.

    I dare you to do the same.

    That is really paying it forward. I looked and forged a couple relationships with just a couple of liquor stores but they didn’t get any either. They point out the limited releases when they get them which in itself is fun. I think most the people that read this blog have at least a couple of friends that they would enjoy sharing any good bourbon with.

    Dare accepted…giving a PVW-15 to a great friend this xmas…can’t wait to see his face when he opens the bag. Remember folks it’s just some booze, having friends and family to share it with….priceless. Happy holidays to all.

    my unopened whale is Col EH Taylor single barrel, I plan to open it Xmas eve.

    just grabbed two bottles of ER 10 at $26.99 ea and one Blanton for $56. blind test time Thursday at first kickoff.


    How timely! Last week, I sent my friends I couldn’t be with for thanksgiving a small package each. Inside is a sample of this year’s release of FRLE Small Batch! They don’t know that yet, since I didn’t tell them what it was. On thanksgiving, I’m sending a group text to them all with a photo of the bottle and my glass to say Thanks, wish we could hang together, but since we can’t in person, we will have to make do!

    I’m sure I’ll probably enjoy some more of something else LE with those around me in person too!

    Cheers and Happy Thanksgiving to all! #BourbonrThanksgiving


    I completely agree! I have opened most of my PVW and will open the rest this holiday season. I am DONE with the excessive searching and secondary market. Trying to be a member of the boys club to get a bottle that is never made available to the public and trying to make sure you are buying other liquor at the right stores to maybe get a chance at a bottle is ridiculous! I am opening the remainder of mine and can state, if given the chance to purchase at retail price, I will gladly buy, but the days of bourbon release craziness and secondary market pricing and trading are over!!!!

    I have completely stopped hunting, I drink what I can find and enjoy it. Unfortunately both of my local shops carry BTAC and Pappy however it’s at 10x retail, so I have given up the ghost. This bubble will bust someday. On a side note, I never buy something I don’t plan on opening.

    I plan on opening a Parkers #4 on thanksgiving to share with family. I agree we should drink the limited bourbons but also think some are worth saving for a very long time. I have a Parkers 27 Distilled in 1981 ( the year I was born) that I plan on saving until we both turn 50! I have a lot of rare bourbons opened, but just as many unopened for future consumption. In my opinion there is no such thing as too much bourbon.

    Wow, those Parkers are 2 amazing bottles. I agree that there’s some bottles worth saving. I have about 4-5 that will be saved for a much later date. Just as long as there’s a balance

    Hey Peacock, I can totally get behind saving a bottle that was distilled the year you were born for a very special birthday! That’s awesome to be able to do that. Cheers!

    Well, we’re doing it the day after Thanksgiving. Scheduled it weeks ago.
    We’re calling it our anti-Black Friday party.
    Instead of waiting for hours in line to save 12 dollars on a tv you don’t need, 35 of us are getting
    together, have 25 different bottles, ranging in cost from a 23 yr PVW, to a 30 dollar bottle of old weller.

    And yes, ribs, brisket, cole slaw . . . and most important, of course, Princess cake!
    So I am doing my part. Should be a fine day. And yes, its not the first time.

    I always keep a few of the ‘hard to find bottles’ for special occasions. For Thanksgiving we are going to open a bottle of John J. Bowman single barrel. Nothing is better than a great bottle of bourbon, family and friends. Bourbon is made for drinking, not hoarding or the secondary market… Cheers and Happy Thanksgiving!

    I agree 100% with your assessment. Last year I got the PVW 15 and the Family Reserve 12 this year. I also got a chance to taste George T Stagg a few days ago but as good as those bourbons are IMHO there are bourbons more easily available and much less expensive that taste just as good if not better. Yep, I said it! Last I checked, the hype surrounding a bourbon does nothing to enhance the taste. I think it’s more about bragging rights than anything. For the record, I drank my bottles in about a month.

    Also I just wanted to mention, the place I tasted the George T Stagg ($45 for a 2oz. pour) had all three PVW bourbons. $225 for a pour of the 15, $425 for the 20, and $625 for the 23. Crazy, right? But if people want it they’ll pay it.

    I agree with the price drop, people should drink and share with friends (gotta love and give a shout out to my cousin Turtle for his generosity). If I had a shop that actually received limited edition bottles, I would make people do a pledge to see if they are a real bourbon enthusiast. Their pledge would be to open the bottle on-site and take a swig – therefore destroying secondary market value. Unfortunately, I will not be making headlines doing this anytime soon – maybe someday I can convince the owner of the wine shop I manage to get on the whiskey/bourbon train and this dream will become a reality.

    This Thanksgiving, brought back a bottle of Stagg and opened it for my friends in Ohio, who probably have a snowball’s chance in hell of seeing it again. I’d rather have the great memories and stories shared than secondary market prices. Surprisingly, still have enough to go around for Christmas (albeit, not so much, as we also polished off about a case of bourbon barrel stouts that I had aging in the cellar). Been thinking more and more that if I do anything with my pappy, BTAC, etc I’m just going tot trade for dusty turkey/OGD/fighting cock to share with my friends or just give ’em as presents.

    Agreed on the special occasion sharing. That’s typically what I save the bottles I earned through hard work for.

    Don’t agree on a price drop. In fact, opening bottles that are in increasing demand removes the potential supply and therefore puts upward pressure on the price of those bottles that are unopened.

    It’s simple. Don’t be dogmatic about this stuff. What you do with your property is your own business. Enjoy the $500 net on flipping that Pappy or keep it and make jellow shots out of it. The only people who care either way are the ones who refuse to accept the reality of the current market.

    The best drinking bourbon are the single barrels that some retailers get. Their limited on quantity an very limited on supply . I can attest to that personally . I own a retail store in east Tennessee an have been buying barrels of bourbon for 13 years . I’ve had barrels of BT, 10ER 4Roses 7yrWeller that were great! Now buying barrels from Garrison , Wyoming , Belle Meade. These are the rarest of all because what’s in the btl comes from 1 barrel.

    I agree with you for the most part. As for me I have 5yrss till retirement. So I am in the buying mode for now. When I retire I will stop buying and turn to enjoying my efforts. However I have 200 different bottles and have yet to purchase at secondary market prices.

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