Bourbon Breakdown: The Jim Beam “Old” Bourbons

September 6, 2021

If you hadn’t noticed, the price of bourbon has been rising due to demand for the past couple of decades. But there are a few old stalwarts hiding there on the bottom shelves that offer a good value. For a time, Jim Beam had a website, since deactivated, devoted to “The Olds” in its portfolio. It included Old Grand-Dad Bourbon as well as Old Overholt Rye, another value bottling in its collection (we will overlook Old Crow at this time).

Jim Beam recently released its Old Tub Bourbon to a wider audience. It had previously only been available to visitors of its distillery. If “The Olds” site were still active, I believe Old Tub would make a fine addition to it. It has a good price point and it’s bonded. Therefore, I’ve organized the Jim Beam “Old” Bourbons together here so you can compare and contrast accordingly.

If you’re in the market for a solid everyday drinker or mixer that won’t break the bank, these are worthy of consideration. And if you’re lucky, they just might be at your favorite dive bar waiting to be poured. Check out the Jim Beam “Old” Bourbons below with a brief fact sheet and tasting note along with our Distiller Community Ratings.

Old Tub Kentucky Straight Bourbon

Old Tub was first launched in 1880, but the bourbon was replaced by Jim Beam’s flagship Original Bourbon bottling shortly after Prohibition.

What to Know:

Old Tub is unfiltered so it has a fuller flavor and it is also bottled-in-bond. That means it’s also aged at least 4 years and bottled at 100 proof. Old Tub was previously only sold in 375ml bottles at Jim Beam’s American Stillhouse in Clermont, Kentucky. However, as of June 2020 it’s available nationwide in 750ml bottles.

What Our Experts Think It Tastes Like:

It’s a chewy mouthful of bourbon, spicy and bittersweet; a solid bourbon for a weekday evening.

Avg US Price: $25
ABV: 50%
Community Rating: 3.43 out of 5 stars (635 Ratings)

Jim Beam Old Bourbons: Old Tub Kentucky Straight BourbonOld Tub Kentucky Straight Bourbon /Photo Credit: Jim Beam

Old Grand-Dad Bonded

Distiller Raymond B. Hayden named this brand after his grandfather, Basil Hayden. It is he who appears on the label.

What to Know:

Old Grand-Dad is a high-rye bourbon (meaning it has more rye in the grain recipe than most bourbons.) Also, this is the bonded version meaning it too is aged for four years and is bottled at 100 proof like Old Tub.

What Our Experts Think It Tastes Like:

Brûléed sugars along with orange, oak and a touch of black pepper.

Avg US Price: $25
ABV: 50%
Community Rating: 3.4 out of 5 stars (1,327 Ratings)

Jim Beam Old Bourbons: Old Grand-Dad BondedOld Grand-Dad Bonded

Old Grand-Dad 114

Like all Old Grand-Dad bourbons, Basil Hayden is pictured on the bottle. Of course, it’s also a high-rye bourbon.

What to Know:

While this is not a bonded bourbon, it does come in at a high proof of 114, hence the name. In addition to the aforementioned bonded 100 proof version, there is also an 80 proof Old Grand-Dad on the market which replaced an 86 proof bottling.

What Our Experts Think It Tastes Like:

Candy corn, tobacco, and rye grain with a spicy and oaky finish.

Avg US Price: $30
ABV: 57%
Community Rating: 3.55 out of 5 stars (1,555 Ratings)

Jim Beam Old Bourbons: Old Grand-Dad 114Old Grand-Dad 114

Ready to do your own Jim Beam “Old” Bourbons comparisons?

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