glencairn-amazonThis was originally reviewed as part of our Budget Bourbon Battle Royale.  The original review can be found here.

VOB100, as it’s often called, is a product of the Sazerac Company.  It is distilled and bottled at the Barton Distillery in Bardstown, KY rather than the massive Buffalo Trace distillery in Frankfort.  This version is bottled-in-bond at 100 proof, though it can also be had at various lower ABVs.

Very Old Barton BiB 1

  • Appearance: Medium Mahogany.
  • Nose: Caramel, Corn, and Vanilla.
  • Taste: Caramel, maple syrup, bananas, and some ripe dark fruits.
  • Finish: Long, sweet, and satisfying.  There is enough alcohol burn to remind you you’re drinking 100 proof whiskey, but it is far from unpleasant.
  • Score: 83/100


As a sub $20 bourbon, VOB has a staunch following of fans who rely on VOB as their “house” or “table” bourbon.  Rightly so.  VOB, especially this bottled-in-bond version at 100 proof, is imminently smooth and enjoyable.  In terms of value, it’s hard to see how it can’t be one of the very top bourbon picks in its price range.  Thus, I highly recommend Very Old Barton 100 Proof  to those seeking the flavors of a top-shelf bourbon at a budget price.

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