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Did the A.H. Hirsch distillery close down?


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#1 Alchemist

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Posted 21 February 2006 - 02:28 PM

Did the A.H. Hirsch distillery close down? Why are their prices going up so much?



A DUSTY SHAKER LEADS TO A THIRSTY LIFE

#2 cocktailgeek

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Posted 21 February 2006 - 02:58 PM

I believe that the bourbon sold as A.H. Hirsch comes from a distillery (Michter's) in Pennsylvania that closed in the late 80's. The reason the prices keep going up is that when it's gone, it's gone.
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#3 SJ Shappee

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Posted 21 February 2006 - 04:40 PM

Did the A.H. Hirsch distillery close down?  Why are their prices going up so much?

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If you Google A.H. Hirsch you will find that it is no longer produced - so enjoy it while and where you can!

Sara

#4 fatdeko

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Posted 21 February 2006 - 07:02 PM

My understanding when these whiskeys started trickling out about 10 yrs ago goes something like this:
Some years after the Michter's distillery was mothballed, a fairly large cache of the whiskey was discovered still snoring in barrels. The hootch was transferred to storage facilities in Kentucky and released as the 16 yr bottling and named after an exec at Schenley. Another portion of the remainder continued to age in barrels (released as the 20yr old) while yet another fraction was transferred to stainless steel to halt any further maturation. So yes, when it's gone, it's alllll gone.

BTW: The Michter's whiskey that's currently out there is not from the resurrected plant in Pennsylvania. Some other folks have simply purchased the name.

myers

#5 mbanu

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Posted 21 February 2006 - 08:01 PM

If you haven't tried yet, you might consider asking the folks at the straightbourbon.com forum. They seem to know everything. :)

#6 Gary Regan

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Posted 22 February 2006 - 06:09 AM

If you haven't tried yet, you might consider asking the folks at the straightbourbon.com forum. They seem to know everything. :)

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As far as I know, everyone here is right about Hirsch. It came from the now defunct Michter's distillery, and when it's gone, it's gone.

Meanwhile, the people who are putting out whiskey under the Michter's name are doing a pretty god job with their ryes, I think. And the new Sazerac 6-year-old is now available in some markets. It's a wonderful cocktail rye.
“The practice is to commence with a brandy or gin ‘cocktail’ before breakfast, by way of an appetizer. Subsequently, a ‘digester’ will be needed. Then, in due course and at certain intervals, a ‘refresher,’ a ‘reposer,’ a ‘settler,’ a ‘cooler,’ an ‘invigorator,’ a ‘sparkler,’ and a ‘rouser,’ pending the final ‘nightcap,’ or midnight dram.” Life and Society in America by Samuel Phillips Day. Published by Newman and Co., 1880.

#7 Evangelos

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Posted 22 February 2006 - 11:11 AM

Yes, the Michter's distillery has been closed for some time now. Check this link for more info:

http://www.hirschbourbon.com/
http://www.winebow.c...its/hirsch.html

As for the bourbon they released a number of bottles from the old distillery.

AH Hirsch 16 year (1st release of this bourbon with a blue wax top)
AH Hirsch 16 year (1st release of this bourbon with a black wax top. export only)
AH Hirsch 16 year (2nd release of this bourbon with a gold wax top)
AH Hirsch 16 year (3rd release of this bourbon with a gold FOIL top and is the most readily available)
AH Hirsch 20 year (near impossible and has holy grail bourbon)
AH Hirsch 19 year (VERY limited and another holy grail bourbon)
AH Hirsch 15 year (I think there was a 15 year as well, but i am not 100%. Search straightbourbon.com for the answer to that one. Possibly another export only version)

As for why the prices are going up it's because this great bourbon will never be made again. Well, unless you can buy, renovate, and reopen the original michter's distillery as get it going again! ;)

#8 Meanderer

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Posted 22 February 2006 - 02:55 PM

The sad story here is that when Michters was up and running, not enough people realized how good it was. Hence its demise.

#9 Snowy is dead

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Posted 22 February 2006 - 04:48 PM

is it possible to find in a liquor store or from a distributor? I've seen it at a restuarant I used to work at, but not for a while.

edit for next question: What is "expensive?"

Edited by Snowy is dead, 22 February 2006 - 04:48 PM.


#10 cocktailgeek

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Posted 22 February 2006 - 05:07 PM

is it possible to find in a liquor store or from a distributor?  I've seen it at a restuarant I used to work at, but not for a while.

edit for next question: What is "expensive?"

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I saw a bottle of the 16yr today at John Walker & Co. (Sutter & Kearny, San Francisco) for $100.
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#11 Snowy is dead

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Posted 22 February 2006 - 05:18 PM

yikes. thanks for the PM eje.
Well, I won't be getting any of that I guess.

#12 eje

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Posted 22 February 2006 - 05:26 PM

No problem, Snowy.

If anyone is in CA, or can have liquor shipped to your state, some of the BevMo locations appear to still have some of the gold top 16 Year A.H. Hirsch Bourbon for a few dollars less than John Walker & Company.

A.H. Hirsch 16 Year
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#13 JAZ

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Posted 22 February 2006 - 06:32 PM

Isn't there a Hirsch rye out there, too? I would swear I've had Manhattans with it.

#14 eje

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Posted 22 February 2006 - 06:45 PM

Isn't there a Hirsch rye out there, too? I would swear I've had Manhattans with it.

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Not sure if there ever was a Hirsch Rye from the A.H. Hirsch company; but, the more commonly available one is from Canada.
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Erik Ellestad
If the ocean was whiskey and I was a duck...
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#15 Evangelos

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Posted 22 February 2006 - 08:17 PM

Look around, I see it more often at $70 a bottle, not $100.

Bevmo link says none available.

#16 eje

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Posted 22 February 2006 - 10:55 PM

Bevmo link says none available.

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If you change the BevMo to pick up at SF-Bayshore, the one closest to me, the website sez they have 8 available currently.

But, $86.99 is too rich for my bourbon budget, unless I get a big payout from uncle sam this year.
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Erik Ellestad
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#17 cocktailgeek

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Posted 23 February 2006 - 03:04 AM

Isn't there a Hirsch rye out there, too? I would swear I've had Manhattans with it.

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I saw the Canadian Hirsch @ John Walker as well, but there was a 13 yr Rye available for a time. I don't know if it is still out there, but it was less expensive than the others, and a damn fine rye to boot.
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#18 M.X.Hassett

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Posted 23 February 2006 - 01:52 PM

Isn't there a Hirsch rye out there, too? I would swear I've had Manhattans with it.

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yep its a 13year rye, I was sipping some in a bar in Phila yesterday. The phrase "When its gone its gone" entered the conversation a few times.
Matthew Xavier Hassett aka "M.X.Hassett"

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#19 eje

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Posted 23 February 2006 - 02:44 PM

Did some poking around on the internet.

Preiss Imports, which I guess now owns the Hirsch name and remaining product, makes and/or distributes 4 Ryes under the Hirsch Selections brand.

The Canadian Ryes are made by Glenora Distillers in Nova Scotia and come in 8, 10, and 12 years old.

According to their website, they also distribute a 21 Year Old Kentucky Rye that was distilled in 1983 by Hirsch in Bardstown, KY.
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Erik Ellestad
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#20 lancastermike

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Posted 24 February 2006 - 11:33 AM

Back in the mid 70's I remember going to the Michters Distillery for a tour. The group was me and two other guys. It was in the little town of Schaeffertown in Lebanon Co Pennsylvania. My Gosh, it had to be 35 years ago and I can still remember the smell of the mash. It was glorious. I certainly recall the pot stills and seeing the warehouse with the barrels of whiskey aging.

I still have a stoneware crock they sold Michters in. It came with a ceramic-topped cork. Regrettably it is empty now. Should have bought lots and hid it somewhere. At the time, what they produced was not considered to be of quality, at least around here. Of course, my whiskey tastes were not very developed in those long ago times

#21 eatrustic

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Posted 26 February 2006 - 01:18 AM

I'm working my way through the second of two 16 year blue tops I bought a few years ago. (A glass in honor of this post as we speak!)
I still have an unopened bottle of the 20 year old that I picked up about 6 years ago and will keep for a rainy day. That's the beauty of whisky over, say, a fine wine. The clock doesn't wind down and it will be as good years from now as when it was bottled.

#22 Evangelos

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Posted 28 February 2006 - 07:35 AM

i am still looking for a blue wax top hirsch 16. can you still get them?

#23 Alchemist

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Posted 01 March 2006 - 09:12 AM

I thought that A.H. was out of business, so every time i went to this one bar that has it I imbibed. (even if it was with my blood pudding at ten A.M.), but every time I thought they did't have more, another bottle miraciously appeared. I felt like I was beholding the oil burning for eight days. I guess I'll have to keep trying to rid them of their pesky A.H. problem.



A DUSTY SHAKER LEADS TO A THIRSTY LIFE

#24 saylahv

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Posted 14 March 2006 - 09:50 PM

Hi there friends... I'm in Hollywood, CA...but I like to think that we're sitting together in a cellar somewhere in Kentucky sipping some extraordinary rye from a cask ...
Just so you know...I joined this eFood Forum joint today because of all of you!... your thread has won top honors in the my-favorite-link-doing-research-for-work-Google-search category. I'm the graphics arm for Preiss Imports--importer of fine spirits... ("fine" as you know, translates as "expen$ive")... and he [Henry Preiss] not only distributes the AH Hirsch 16 yr old.. but owns ALL remaining inventory... not that that helps your particular hunt for it... but if you're still in the market, I can find out the who & where's & how much's for you. Also...re: Hirsch Rye... the ones you remember with the ink drawn style labels are discontinued... but inside scoop-wise ... Henry has just bottled a 21 year old Hirsch KENTUCKY rye... and has released 3 Hirsch CANADIAN Ryes: 8, 10 & 12 year olds ... as you might have guessed... he owns the name [Hirsch Selection] as well ... I'm feeling particularly involved with it all right now, cause I designed the new rye labels (not the best work I've ever done.. 1st time in label design) & just finished 80 pages of his biennial catalog ... I've uploaded a sneak peek of Hirsch pages just for you... It includes recipe pages... & might take a few seconds to load..
Preiss Imports
..Any ideas for the cover ??... gotta get it to the printer by week's end... aieee
Anywho... thanks for listening guys..
-say