5 things I learned about Bourbon in 2014…

1)  It’s not all about Pappy.  Pretend the entire hype surrounding Pappy didn’t exist and you went to a store and paid $69.99 for a 15 year bottle of Pappy Van Winkle.  You would say man this is great bourbon, but you wouldn’t lose sleep if you didn’t get a bottle.  You wouldn’t sit outside in a lawn chair in freezing temps overnight, and you sure as hell wouldn’t pay $625 in the secondary market for one.  No, you would just drink a really good bottle of bourbon, but life would continue either way.  For some reason, in this alternate universe, Pappy is supposedly greater than everything else.  Is it good?  Sure.  Worth the overhype, more than double retail price, hassle, long lines, and general bullshit to aquire one?  Absolutely not.  It’s just another bourbon.

2)  Your tastes change as you get into Bourbon and you begin to try older and stronger stuff.  A year ago my first big time bottle for me was the standard proof Angels Envy.  I took a taste of it tonight, at 90 proof, and thought it was terrible.  Just 3 months ago, I thought Jefferson’s Ocean was amazing.  Now it just tastes overly salty to me.  The more you try, the more your tastes change.  Or maybe I’m just burning taste buds at an extraordinary rate.

3)  Bourbon as a hobby connects you to a lot of people, and it’s awesome.  I have befriended people all over the place, on all forms of social media, and it’s really fun to be able to reach out to so many different people for opinions, thoughts, reviews, ideas, etc.  Bourbon is a very social hobby, and I like that aspect of it.

4)  Rare bourbon has become like baseball cards in the late 80’s with people buying, selling, and trading all day long to complete collections, acquire rare pieces, etc.  The only difference is this trading is completely underground, in secret places, and totally controlled by the consumer, not by the retailer (the secondary market that is).

5)  Bourbon hunting can take over your life, your family, and your bank account.  I spent too much time in liquor stores and not enough time with my family or with my friends sharing the rewards of my hunts.  My hunts in the future will be more refined, take less time, and be less intrusive on my family life that takes precedence over everything else.

Cheers to a new year and new experiences.  🙂

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