glencairn-amazonThis was posted as part of our Budget Bourbon Battle Royale (#BBBR).  You can find the original post here.

This robust high-rye bourbon is produced by Jim Beam Brands.  It is bottled in bond at 100 Proof, though various other proofs have been and still are available for purchase.


  • Appearance: Medium copper.
  • Nose: Rye, pepper, alcohol, and some woody pine hints.
  •  Taste: Strong black pepper spices, some maple syrup, and cinnamon.
  •  Finish: Long, with an almost over-the-top spicy tingle.
  •  Score: 76 out of 100.


Old Grand-Dad Bottled in Bond
Old Grand-Dad Bottled in Bond

Old Grand Dad has been around a long time.  It shares the same high-rye recipe at Beam brands as does Basil Hayden, which makes this an interesting juxtaposition on the effects of aging and proof on a mash bill.  In this case, the 100 proof version serves up an extremely spicy bourbon, almost akin to a high proof rye whiskey without the citrus notes.  It compares very favorably to white label Jim Beam, and I would choose this over the standard Beam offering any day.   But this is not a weak bourbon.  There is a definite bite on the palate, so it’s not for the weak of heart.  Those seeking a powerful spice-bomb of a bourbon at a low cost will undoubtedly enjoy this, and it is a high value selection for those of similar taste references.  Those who like a sweeter, smoother bourbon should probably look elsewhere for their budget pick.

The scoring system is a standard 100 point system based on 4 categories, taken in order.

  1. Appearance: 15 points
  2. Nose: 25 Points
  3. Palate/Taste: 35 Points
  4. Finish: 25 points
  • 95+        Epic
  • 90-94     Excellent, Good representative of its style
  • 85-89     Solid sipper
  • 80-84     Drinkable, but potentially flawed.
  • 75-79     Low quality, flawed, use as a mixer only
  • <75        Rot Gut, avoid