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Old Weller Antique 107 Brand

Average score from 6 reviews and 9 ratings 88

Old Weller Antique 107 Brand

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@OdysseusUnbound
Old Weller Antique 107 Brand

I've seen this bourbon referred to as the Weller 12's "little brother", so I was skeptical about it at first. I have a bottle of Weller 12 that's still over 3/4 full after about a year since I really don't care for it. But some wise people here convinced me to try OWA 107 and I'm glad they did. I believe this wheater is 7 years old, though the bottle bears no age statement.

Tasting notes

  • Nose (undiluted): toffee, floral vanilla, oak spices, icing sugar
  • Palate (undiluted): rich and oily mouthfeel, very little “burning” despite the 53.5% abv, sugar cookies with vanilla icing, cherries, Macintosh apples with cinnamon
  • Finish: long and warming, salted caramel, toasted oak, and a bit of Barrel char.

Water mutes the toffee and apple notes a bit, but brings out the barrel char and a slight waxiness. Good both ways, but water is not needed. I preferred it neat. The texture of this whiskey is fantastic. I enjoyed it so much that I purchased 2 backup bottles and I am actively seeking more. It's perfectly balanced; its flavours are flawlessly integrated. Awesome stuff. Little brother has outdone his older sibling.

I always aim to have a couple of these on hand. I see another 100 showed up online at the LCBO. Wonder if any will make it to stores. Either way I have 2 to get me through.

@boatracer And the LCBO App/Website is “unable to process orders”.....yet there are now only 83 available online.

@casualtorture

Weller Antique 107. This has become a hot commodity lately. Here in Nashville, you basically have to know someone to get this and it's gone as soon as the shipment arrives. Thankfully I know someone. Let's see what all the fuss is about.

Bottle opened 2 weeks and 80% full. First neat, then water added.

Nose neat: Charred red apple skins covered in cinnamon and caramel. Banana, coriander oddly enough.

Palate neat: Gooey caramel, followed by red apple, pear, cinnamon and vanilla. Fairly hot at 107 proof.

Finish: Again, charred red apple skins covered in cinnamon and vanilla (this seems to be the theme.)


Nose Water: More green fruit than red fruit. Loads more vanilla.

Palate Water: More creamy mouthfill, more variety of fruit flavor. Again, lots of vanilla. The oak is less pronounced.

Finish water: Still red apple skins and vanilla cream.

Overall: I might prefer this with a splash of water. It seems to settle it down and open it up. I'm not sure what the fuss is about. It's a decent whiskey but I don't see why people clamour for it.

Thanks for the review. This one must have a wide degree of batch variation, as I would not have guessed this is the same wheater I have in my cabinet at all...Your last sentence aptly describes how I feel about OWA’s 12 Year Old sibling...

@OdysseusUnbound Yeah I don't get it. I know it's supposed to be baby Pappy and all but it's not all that wonderful (to me anyway.) I guess they've done a good job of making it 'rare' so people want it even more. And I'm sure it's hard to keep up with the crazy, rabid demand as well which may lead to greater variation.

@Nozinan

This year Old Weller Antique 107 was included in the Buffalo Trace (Antique) lottery that the LCBO held in January. Though I struck out with all the other offerings my family and I did win the rights to a few of these $35 “consolation prizes”. I’d heard good things about it, and I have minimal experience with wheated bourbon so let’s see what this is all about.

This expression is reviewed in my usual manner, allowing it to settle after which I take my nosing and tasting notes, followed by the addition of a few drops of water, waiting, then nosing and tasting. I don’t usually add water to bourbons but did so in order to fully explore it for this review. Interestingly, when I added the water, the swirls and ripples in the glass lasted for quite a while, even with gentle swirling.

The bottle was opened February 4, 2017, and is just over 2/3 full, gassed each time.


Nose:

Neat – On initial pour, soft caramel, vanilla, dust and oak. After a few minutes, some high pitched (the way I imagine them when @Victor describes them) fruity notes, corn syrup, some baking spices, the faintest hint of pickle juice. Despite the high ABV no spirity hint of alcohol on the note. Quite nice but a little soft. 22/25

With water – "warmer", strong vanilla, more powerful nose. Less fruity. Definitely more complex and more interesting. (23/25)

Taste:

Neat – First sip is quite powerful. Sweet, with a sharp alcohol nip. The oak is quite forward. I get caramel and vanilla, a little spiciness (or is that the alcohol?). Not that complex. 21/25

With water – Still spirity, a little thinner on the mouthfeel. Some mint or menthol on the development . A little more complex. (21.5/25)

Finish: Vanilla, dry, slightly astringent, and fades quickly 20/25. Less bitter with water. (21/25)

Balance: Overall it’s a balanced whisky, but neat, the alcohol is a bit overpowering. 21/25. With water it seems a little more cohesive. (21.5/25)

Score: Neat - 8 4/100 With Water: 87/100

Time-Adjusted Score based on Enjoyment: 87/100


This one settles down after about an hour in the glass. I would need to try it again without water to see if it does the same, but who has time to wait an hour?

This might be a good bottle to leave ungassed for a few weeks and see if the harshness tones itself down. Maybe the next time I pour it I'll do that.

@Nozinan I found that wheat is a strange grain in the way that it mellows rye and give some soft sweetness on a freshly opened bottled but, with time and air, it becomes spicier. So my guess is that the alcohol harshness may go away with time but it will become hotter with cake spices. Of course, I am talking about months of air...

@talexander I'm sure my bottle will be around for more than a year, though somehow my bourbons empty faster than my Scotches (probably because there are fewer of them), so perhaps we can test the hypothesis together.

@talexander

Every year, the LCBO is allotted some of the Buffalo Trace Antique Collection, which are then sold through an online lottery system. This year, they added a number of other Buffalo Trace products, including Wellers, Taylors and Pappys. I was lucky enough to win three bottles - W.L. Weller 12 Year Old, Old Weller Antique 107 and the 2016 edition of George T. Stagg! I already reviewed the 12 some years ago, so let's review the other two but taste them with the 12 as a sort of comparison.

The Old Weller Antique 107 is meant to reflect the style of a bygone age (apparently). The "107" refers to the alcohol proof.

The colour is a medium reddish copper. On the nose there's some serious oak, wood smoke, vanilla and some red tannins, like a big shiraz. Floral. Mint and sage. Doesn't nose like it's 53.5%. Smokier and mintier with water. Nicely subtle and soft.

On the palate, with even bigger vanilla, mouth-pulling oak, black cherries and hints of black liquorice. Red apple skins. Menthol. Cinnamon, cumin and cayenne. Tastes like a big bourbon should, but with some subtlety and complexity.

The finish is deep with oak, beef stock and various berries (cherry, blackberry). This is simply a great, solid, well crafted bourbon, with terrific balance of fat oak and vanilla with subtle fruit and herbal notes. Compared with the W. L. Weller 12 Year Old, I would score it somewhat higher. The 12 is fruitier and smoother, but the 107 is both woodier and more layered somehow. Of course, both are great. Jim Murray scores this a 96. Side note: I looked up my tasting notes on the 12 (written five years ago) and I only scored it an 85. I would score it higher now.

Just opened a bottle of this. Maybe it's the power of suggestion but I get a lot of what you describe.

This is powerful stuff. Still getting my palate around it but I think I'm going to enjoy this...

Hmm. Surprising. I thought it was supposed to be really bad.

@Paddockjudge told me it was terrible and offered to take the bottles my family and I had won off my hands...

smile

@Victor

The reviewed bottle of Old Weller Antique 107, Old Label, with a 7 Years Old age statement, was opened 4 years ago, is 45% full, and has held its flavours well for all of that time. Newer bottles of Old Weller Antique 107 do not carry an age statement

Nose: lush pointed sweet rich maple, huge floral notes of rose and honeysuckle, marvellous vanilla, spice from oak, and flavours from wheat

Taste: excellent translation of the nose flavours which continue both lush and pointed

Finish: long, very rich, and very sweet. All of the elements remain long

Balance: this bottle was one of only 3 or 4 whiskies to which I had to initially adjust to its intensity. Soon it went from "too much" to "I love it", and I began to crave it for its strong delicious flavours. This bottle has held up extremely well open 4 years and gassed for 1 year. I have not sampled from a more recent NAS batch of Old Weller Antique 107. OWA107 is my favourite inexpensive wheated bourbon, and would be one of the first bottles I would buy on a very limited whisk(e)y budget. Would a new bottle taste this good? I'd have to taste one to find out. I very highly recommend Old Weller Antique 107

@MisterDigger

When I first began my bourbon quest in 2010, I had finally gotten my hands on a bottle of Pappy Van Winkle 15. Then I had a strong hunch that this OWA107 is basically the same mashbill that is aged 8 years less. Leave it to me to perform a side by side taste test. Lo and behold, the PVW15 tastes the same as this one minus a bit of the harshness found here. However, for being about $50 US cheaper and available year round, I buy this one on a regular basis. I have only seen PVW15 on the shelf once and I grabbed it before it was gone. I came back the next day to buy the other two, and they were gone. Therefore, PVW15 is not something that is readily available, so I will settle for it's baby brother here.

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