If you’ve come looking for a Very Old Barton review, you must be a bourbon insider. That, or you’re about to find your new favorite value whiskey. A few facts before we get into the nitty-gritty: It's hard to find this whiskey outside of Kentucky, so if you see some bottles on your liquor store shelves, grab yourself one. We don’t think you’ll regret it. Because the price point is less than $20, the brand still ends up on a lot of top whiskey lists. In 2010, Very Old Barton snagged Whisky Advocate’s Best Buy Whiskey of the Year award.
Certainly, it’s one of the most affordable bourbons that’s spent some time inside a barrel. The distiller removed the 6-year age statement from the label in the early 2010s, but they still age the bourbon for around four years. These days, they agree to go by taste instead of time. This Very Old Barton review will give a quick history of the brand, highlight some Instagram influencers who drink it and tell you some of the best ways to enjoy this rich and full bourbon.
Very Old Barton comes from the Barton Distillery, which is in the heart of bourbon country. Open since 1879, it’s the longest continuous operation running in Bardstown, Kentucky. 1792 is the distillery’s flagship product, bottled in small batches and aged about four years longer than Very Old Barton. (1792 is worth trying, but it’s not the focus of this Very Old Barton review.)
Barton Distillery also produces for almost 50 brands that distribute throughout the country. Most of them are
value brands, and likely aren’t aged as long as Very Old. But, if you can’t
find Very Old Barton in your state, you can still try this recipe: If you pour
your whiskey into a decanter, often the spirit will open and mellow. You can turn a
value buy into an acceptable sipper in just a few days.
Sazerac, the owner of Buffalo Trace, Eagle Rare, and Blanton, also has the Barton distillery in its portfolio. While each distillery is an independent operation, it’s clear that the brand is part of an impressive lineup. Some bourbon drinkers only care about what’s in the glass, but if you’re deciding to purchase a brand for the first time, it’s nice to know the distillery has some cred.
There are four different labels for Very Old Barton. It
gets bottled in proofs to suit anyone’s taste. You can sometimes find 80, 86,
90 and 100 bottled-in-bond proofs on the shelves. All four expressions of the
bourbon receive high reviews--all above 90 points in Jim Murray’s Whisky Bible. So you’re safe buying whatever proof you prefer. This
Very Old Barton review will focus on the 100-proof, as it’s the most popular
and highest rated.
For drinkers put off by the high proof, you can always add a splash of water to your neat pour to adjust the ABV to your preference.
The mash bill for the bourbon is 75 percent corn, 15
percent rye and 10 percent malted barley. Even young expressions will be on the
sweeter side because of the high corn percentage, but you’ll still get some
lovely spice notes from the rye. The bottled-in-bond comes through with dark,
rich notes on the nose and palate. Think chocolate, dark stone fruit, leather,
and roasted nuts when you pour a glass.
The Whisky Bible review of the bottled-in-bond says it all: “This bourbon needs to be worn on the tongue as the indulgence it represents.” (Quick reminder, though, this indulgence will set you back less than $15 a bottle.)
We’re not the only ones impressed with Very Old Barton. Check out these influencers’ reviews of the bourbon, and give them a follow on Instagram while you’re at it.
Image credit: @bourbonhusker
“Fresh off the #kentuckybourbontrail and could not wait to try this Very Old Barton BIB. It's early in the bottle, but so far I'd say it's a decent pour.”
Image credit: @bourbon_state
“Refilling one of the cocktail decanters for the bar. This is one of my favorite all-purpose pours that I’m not afraid to use while experimenting with new cocktails.”
Image credit: @barrelproofmac
“Have you ever wanted a bourbon that doesn’t break the bank, you can drink while the temperature is scorching, and you actually still enjoy it? Look no further! The @barton1792 Very Old Barton is a great competitor of the @jtsbrownwhiskey ! I will have to say, I’m torn between the two for my favorite budget bourbon.”
Image credit: @currentlydrinking_ samples
“Very Old Barton 100 Proof. First drink after being sick all last weekend! We enjoy the VOB 86 proof, so we decided to buy the 100 proof when it came in stock.”
Image credit: @thewhiskeytornado
“Very Old Barton Bottled In Bond is ridiculously good for $15! I’ve had this on the shelf for about a year and sorry I waited this long to try it.”
When you have the bottled-in-bond on your home bar, you’re always prepared for both laid-back nights at home and entertaining. Use our diamond glasses to pour a few fingers of Very Old Barton. You can add a splash of water, ice, or soda if 100 proof is a little too much fire for your taste. The bottled-in-bond has broad shoulders perfect for classic cocktail recipes. We recommend making your next Old Fashioned or Bourbon Manhattan with Very Old Barton for an approachable way to enjoy this robust spirit.
Everyone has their favorite $40 or $80 bottle of bourbon
that they save for special occasions, but finding a value buy you enjoy
drinking almost as much as the more expensive label is a real treat.
Fair warning, Very Old Barton is only available in a few
states. So if you see it on the shelves at your liquor store or in your
travels, treat yourself to a bottle.
What bourbon can you not resist buying when you see it at
the store? Let us know in the comments below.