Old Forester 1870 - Featured
Bourbon Spirits

Old Forester Original Batch 1870


Initial Thoughts:

The first time I had an opportunity to taste Old Forester Bourbon I was very pleased.  I love a good strong flavor and a little heat out of my bourbon.  Old Forester delivered and they had two different proofs to choose from for a great value!  From that moment, I’ve been indoctrinated into their brand.  They could probably make bratwurst bourbon and I’d be picking the bottle up and spreading their propaganda for them voluntarily.  Good thing they don’t make bratwurst bourbon and take advantage of the twinkle in my eye.

Old Forester 1870 - Label

Rather, they make bourbons like this one in particular that are even better. Old Forester Original Batch 1870 is the first craft expression in the Old Forester Whiskey Row Series. Brown-Forman Master Distiller, Chris Morris is responsible for crafting this tribute bourbon in honor of George Garvin Brown.  I can’t wait to see what rolls out next and I look forward to trying each of them.  Its times like these that I’m glad to live in Louisville because I know that distribution for these heavenly spirits will flow in this fine city.

George Garvin Brown



The name Old Forester 1870 is a nod to the bourbon that Brown-Forman founder, George Garvin Brown, first sold on the streets of Louisville.  That bourbon actually has the distinction of being the first bottled bourbon in America.  Before then, bourbon was sold by the barrel.  Mr. Brown was a former pharmaceutical salesman, turned bourbon producer that setup shop on Louisville’s old Whiskey Row.  As it turns out, Brown-Forman has recently announced that they will be bring the Old Forester brand back to the place where it all started.  There are plans to build an Old Forester Distillery in downtown Louisville, where the original Whiskey Row was located.

Old Forester 1870 - Back Label

As for the background on Old Forester 1870, Old Forester tried to keep this modern interpretation as close to the original bourbon as possible.  Back in 1870, Mr. Brown blended bourbon from three different distilleries.  To replicate that, today’s version blends batches from three different warehouses.  Not only did they source the bourbon from different warehouses, but on different days of production, different proofs and different ages.  They even went as far as to minimally filter the bourbon to simulate the technology that was available back in 1870.



The nose with Old Forester 1870 was very pleasant.  Like Christmas morning, I even picked up the pleasant smell of a fresh Christmas tree.  Vanilla and oak were prominent with a good dose of clove.  There was a spicy fragrance that was a little more difficult to ascertain but I finally decided on cinnamon.  Overall, if you put these altogether you are not going to be disappointed.  Siz and I were certainly pleased.

Old Forester 1870 - Hang Tag


The flavor was very appealing much like the nose.  The Christmas morning scent was made complete when the taste resembled many of the items used in cooking a large holiday dinner.  Clove and cinnamon were prominent on the middle and sides of the palate as I swirled the bourbon around.  I will say that the flavor was lighter and more fragrant that I had initially expected.  It didn’t come at you with a sledge hammer.  Rather, it knocked on the door politely,as any guest would, waved as you walked to answer, and then unveiled the smorgasbord of hospitality that had been concocted.  I’ll admit my bias towards this product upfront.  I was looking and expecting something delicious but I don’t feel too guilty because you’d have to be a ridiculous person to sell people on this bourbon being anything other than tasty and well thought-out.

Finish:  Kentucky’s Toothpaste

The finish was quite surprising.  It was very clean and did not linger at all.  I was left with a minty after taste, presumably from the clove.  I’ve decided that I might begin using this as toothpaste because it left a similar pleasant feeling.  An extremely desirable cool finish.



Old Forester 1870 - Glass

I must say that Old Forester Original Batch 1870 was great from start to finish.  The nose was pleasant and the taste had a similar flavor profile.  The concept is great, the product well produced, and I’m left a happy customer.  I’m really looking forward to trying the other products in the Whiskey Row Series.

I would recommend this bourbon to anyone.  It’s priced well at just over $40 and is fair for what you are receiving.  Well done Old Forester, well done!

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2 thoughts on “Old Forester Original Batch 1870

  1. cag

    it sounds great. I hope I get to try It up here in Wisconsin.

    1. Eric Scism

      Bummer, man it’s only going to be available here: Chicago, Denver, Louisville, Nashville, New York City, Seattle and San Francisco… We can’t find any more around Nashville.

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