Old Grand-Dad 80 proof Review

Old Grand-Dad 80 proof Review

Old Grand-Dad 80 proof came into existence in 2013 when Beam decided to cut the 86 proof version down to 80 proof in order to stretch out how many bottles of whiskey they could get out of a barrel. If this doesn’t make much sense to you I’ll explain in the next paragraph. If it makes perfect sense to you then you might as well skip to the review.

When it comes to straight bourbon the only thing that can be added to it is water. When whiskey comes out of the barrel it’s sitting somewhere between 50-70+% ABV (100 – 140+ proof) depending on how long it’s been aging for and under what conditions. When bottled at full cask strength a barrel will yield between 180 – 230 bottles. When water is added it cuts the proof down, by adding to the total liquid volume, which in turn increases the number of bottles that can be sold per barrel of whiskey.

Old Grand-Dad 80 proof Info

Region: Kentucky, USA

Distiller: Jim Beam
Mashbill: 63% Corn, 27% Rye, 10% Malted Barley
Cask: New charred oak
Age: NAS
ABV: 40%

Price: $16

Old Grand-Dad 80 proof Review

Rusted Tang

The aroma starts off with big notes of raw corn, vanilla and caramel which expand and fill the nose – leaving little room for the more subtle notes of citrus, dusty spice, watery fruit and strawberry Necco Wafers to appear. There is a vague woody underpinning that feels water logged.

Dusty raw corn, vanilla and a watery caramel again dominate, but this time the bring a bit of spice with them. Some light notes of astringent wood, yeast and and a waxy citrus make a minimal impact.

Medium and corn driven with light notes of vanilla, spice and wet wood.

It doesn’t feel very well balanced, carries a thin watery body and a soft light texture that completes the “boring whiskey” picture.

Old Grand-Dad 80 proof is a light, airy and boring whiskey. Does it work as a sipper? Sure, but it’s not a very interesting one and only a few bucks more will get you the Old Grand-Dad BiB which is a much better whiskey. In a cocktail it’s not bad, but again OGD BiB works even better with the higher proof giving it a bolder presence in the drink. My honest opinion is that Beam should only put out the BiB, 114 and Basil Hayden when it comes to their OGD mashbill. Cut this one from the lineup and focus on the ones that have a bit of backbone to them.

SCORE: 76/100

Old Grand-Dad 80 proof Review - Score Breakdown
  • Nose - 76
  • Palate - 76
  • Finish - 76
  • Balance, Body & Feel - 76


Old Grand-Dad 80 proof is as boring as can be. Cough up the $5 extra bucks and get the Bonded version. It’s a much better whiskey.

Old Grand-Dad 80 proof Label

Josh Peters

Josh Peters

I read about, think about, write about, and drink whisk(e)y. In short, it's my passion.
Josh Peters

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18 Responses to Old Grand-Dad 80 proof Review

    • That’s a good question, but unfortunately I have no idea. Though if I had to guess it would be due to the distributor because I still see them in CA so they’re still being made.

  1. It may not be a sipper, per se, but it’s a decent gulper. Call me crazy, but I really like this stuff. It’s decent neat. The high rye mashbill keeps it interesting, for what it is. Compared to other products at this price tier, I’d rate this a strong buy. My collection is wide, varied, and growing. Some things I’ve enjoyed but won’t restock (e.g. Basil Hayden, I’m looking at you). This one, I will.

  2. Awful this 80 proof. I’m just getting Lemon and bitterness. The good batches I’ve had in bonded version a nice orange candy flavor and a kilm dried grain texture back palate. Same in 86 proof nation distillery old miniatures. I’ve had beam ogd 114 too and that had a nice ice cream and caramel flavor. Really disappointed. Cost my $60AU.I’m getting in rhum (never had) and cachaca next.

  3. I’ve been drinking hundred-proof Grandad 4/50 years I am not happy but they don’t make it in half a gallon that anymore and how high the price when up but just like a woman when you’ve been with it that long it’s hard to give it up

  4. You’re awful harsh on this. It’s a good, easy easy drinking bourbon that mixes well. Yeah it’s a little weak but sometimes you don’t need a lot of pop. Great bourbon to introduce someone to bourbon with and won’t scare them off. Sure there’s better but look at the price.

  5. Josh I libe in Australia & have what I believe is old bottle of Old GrandadBourbon
    If you provide email info I will send photos as I want to sell and would like idea on value please
    Leighton Burns

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