Bourbons_Bistro_LogoTom Fischer is like most bourbon geeks. He loves Pappy Van Winkle bourbon, and he’s a proud owner of a few bottles.

But as the operator of, he knows even Julian Van Winkle would say there are lots of other great options bourbon lovers should try.

“That’s why I came up with the idea of Bourbons Worth Stealing,” said Fischer. “Pappy’s great. No arguments there. But with all the hype over it being stolen last year, I thought we’d have some fun with having a tasting of hard-to-find stuff that’s also, in my opinion, worth stealing. … Not that I’d actually do that!”

From 7 to 9 p.m. tomorrow night (Tuesday, April 8) at Bourbons Bistro, Fischer and Bourbons’ owner Jason Brauner will lead about 40 people through a tasting and open discussion of five hard-to-find bourbons and one superb old rye.

“Some of what we’re pouring can be found for $25 and to $50 a shot,” said Fischer. “And one of the bourbons we’re keeping as a surprise, that could cost as much as $300 a pour.”

That, said Fischer, helps justify the $125 admission price to Tuesday’s event. That plus the stream of appetizers coming from the kitchen.

“This is a real experience of the limited and the rare,” Fischer said. “There aren’t many places where you can taste so much limited stuff at one time and in such a setting.”

Fischer’s lineup (with some comments of my own) thus far includes:

michters-20-year-bourbonMichter’s 20 Year Single Barrel Bourbon: Michter’s considers 17 to 20 years the “fork in the road point” when certain barrels of whiskey can achieve an extraordinary level of quality. These particular barrels that master distiller Willie Pratt personally selects for a very limited bottling of Michter’s 20-Year Single Barrel Bourbon. (I’ve had it, and it’s remarkable.)

Michter’s 25 Year Old Rye: This is the most allocated of Michter’s limited production items. This 25 year-old rye, subject to the costly evaporation of a quarter century of “angel’s share,” continues the Michter’s tradition of sparing no expense in striving to produce the finest whiskey possible. (This is the best rye I’ve ever had.)

Jefferson’s Reserve Ocean II: Ocean II is made from bourbon that’s aged at sea. (These barrels were stashed on the yacht of a friend of Trey Zoeller’s, master blender for Jefferson’s Reserve, and sailed to five continents. That constant agitation inside the barrel produces a truly unique product.)

Orphan Barrel Barterhouse 20-year old: Recently launched as one of the first two releases in the Orphan Barrel Whiskey Distilling Company collection, this 20-year old bourbon came from the Stitzel-Weller warehouses near downtown Louisville. Its mellow taste includes notes of roasted grain, charred oak and a brown sugar finish. (I’ve had this also, and I’m eager to have it again.)

Surprise Bourbon? According to Fischer, “I’m hoping to have two surprises, but only one is certain right now. And all I’ll tell you about it is you can’t actually find in the U.S. You have to go overseas to get it.”

Cost for the evening is $125 per person. Tickets are limited, so my apologies for not mentioning sooner. Here’s how to get your seat: Text WHISKEY along with your name to 502-208-8996, you’ll receive a text back to confirm. Or just call Bourbons Bistro directly at (502) 894-8838.