October 2018 Archives

Ezra Brooks 7 Year Old

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ezra7.jpg
It was the price tag that first caught my eye; $47.70.

I was on the hunt for a bargain table whisky to bring to the a meeting of the club. Stalking the spirit aisles of the LCBO, I noticed an unfamiliar brand: Ezra Brooks 7 year old Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey, and I remember thinking something like, "Hmmm, a 7 year old bourbon under $50, ok, what else we got...waitaminute, a 7 year old, 50.5% over-proof bourbon under $50 in the LCBO!?"

And then, 

"Who or what is Ezra Brooks?"

The brand dates back to the late 1950's and was the creation of Frank Silverman of the Hoffman Distilling Company in Lawrenceburg. The story goes that he came up with an idea to add a bourbon to the distillery's product line to compete with the ascendant Jack Daniels which was suffering from it's success and was under stocked to meet demand resulting in market shortages and strict allocations. Looking to capitalize on the whiskey boom, Silverman pretty much copied everything about the whiskey right down to the charcoal filtration and honed in on the action. 

Ezra Brooks was made at Hoffman until the late '70s and then was revived in 1993 when the brand was picked up by Luxco. This year, Luxco opened it's Lux Row Distillery in Bardstown and moved production from Heaven Hill to the new location. The change in address is bringing about a change to Old Ezra too as the new product site showcases not only a redesigned label but also an increase in the ABV to a muscular 58.5%. 

The new Old Ezra is due out this month in American markets but who knows when it will appear up here... but in the meantime and, in between time, let's see how the old Old Ezra stands up to its reputation as a sippin' whisky.

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Recent Comments

  • Ryan commented on Ezra Brooks 7 Year Old:

    Thanks for the comment Dan, please come back when you've opened it. Interested to hear how you think it compares. I'm saving a dram or 2 to compare with the new version...when it eventually surfaces here in Ontario!

  • Dan commented on Ezra Brooks 7 Year Old:

    Glad to hear the Old Old Ezra didn't disappoint. My D&D group gave me a bottle of the Ezra Brooks Black Label for Christmas last year, and it's fairly anemic; I've used it mostly for mixing, infusion experiments (made some Cherry Bounce), and making BBQ sauce, but I did grab a bottle of the 7 year simply because it was so inexpensive, on the hope that it would be an improvement, so this has buoyed my spirits!

  • Tom Alexander commented on The Hakushu 12 Years Old:

    I've found this at some Japanese restaurants in Toronto.

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