Psst... We're working on the next generation of Chowhound! View >
HOME > Chowhound > Spirits >
Apr 24, 2012 08:10 PM

This bourbon tastes like rotted fish

I'm sipping Woodford Reserve, batch 607, bottle 04008, which I purchased today. I am not hard to please, I am no stranger to Woodford and better bourbons generally, but this is nasty. I looked back at the bottle, almost expecting to see a floating dead fish. How much can bourbon vary?

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. I tend to think that Woodford at its best is pretty bad, but I gather from your description that you have had Woodford in the past and that you feel this bottle is decidedly worse.

    Bourbon doesn't usually vary much, especially a regular expression like Woodford, but it can. It's very rare, but bourbon can have cork contamination, bacterial contamination or can suffer from oxidation.

    Is there evidence of leakage? Cork rot? Anything else abnormal?

    1. Sometimes the filling lines or other could be contaminated from not cleaning properly between runs. There was a batch of Peychaud's Bitters last year that had a nasty sock aroma/taste to it.

      I would contact the store since they should know what they are selling (since it is likely more than just one bottle). Contacting the distillery might not hurt either.

      1. Save the bottle and use it as seasoning for Vietnamese and Thai food.

        1. Are you on any sort of medication? Sometimes, they'll screw up your taste buds. It's happened to me more than once....