Review: John B. Stetson Bourbon

Review: John B. Stetson Bourbon

john b. stetson bourbon

Don’t let the New Jersey office location of Vision Wine & Spirits, the owner of this new whiskey, give you a scare. It’s Kentucky Straight Bourbon, through and through.

Crafted using both rye and wheat in the mashbill (in addition to corn and barley, of course), the whiskey is double distilled in traditional copper pot stills and aged for four years in oak (though no age statement is officially offered). Bottling proof is slightly elevated at 84 proof.

The results are just as dandy as one of Stetson’s namesake hats. On the nose: Some corn, and a bit of vaporous heat. Underneath, sugar, orange peel,and  cherries. There’s also some Irish whiskey-like banana character in the mid-palate, with a corn chip kicker on the finish. Stetson comes across as young Bourbon, but one with a bit of pedigree. Both the rye and wheat character come through, which is quite a delight. It isn’t brash or rough, just still a little wet around the ears. On the whole, it’s enjoyable, but it hasn’t quite come into its own just yet. I’d love to try this at 5 1/2 or 6 years old.

84 proof.


John B. Stetson Bourbon




Christopher Null is the founder and editor in chief of Drinkhacker. A veteran writer and journalist, he also operates Null Media, a bespoke content creation company.


  1. Jake on February 17, 2012 at 6:31 am

    Thanks, little word is out about this one. Just got around to tasting it, and loving it every sip. Despite of its 84 proof, it´s smooth and delightful. I found it to be a rare combination of young, fruity and to a pleasant extend mature with complexity. After first assuming it would at least make for a real eye-charmer in the shelf, conflicts are imminent, as an empty bottle never looks as good…

  2. Armin on April 16, 2012 at 4:37 pm

    A pleasant bourbon, one I would rank amongst ‘starter’ bourbons like Maker’s Mark. It possesses a distinct taste of caramel, is very smooth, and goes down easy; there is almost no ‘burn’ to it, but has a very short after-taste. Echoing the original statement, it would be very interesting to see what this bourbon would be like if aged a bit longer. Otherwise, an excellent choice for sipping and relaxing.

  3. vtbarrera on April 23, 2012 at 10:35 am

    Great write up! I’m hoping I can score a bottle of this at my local retailer before derby weekend. But, I believe the link you provide in the article is bad, here’s the homepage for their bourbon.

  4. Christopher Null on April 23, 2012 at 10:48 am

    Thanks, link seems to have been changed recently (looks like someone got a cross-promotion deal with the Stetson hat people…)

  5. Brandon G. on September 24, 2015 at 4:27 am

    Pretty solid choice here. As has been said, young, but refined enough to pour one for a good friend. $31 on the shelf, but typically on sale for $26ish. Puts it in competition with Four Roses, Old Forester, and Buffalo Trace. That’s a good place to be!

  6. Prefer real whiskey on July 13, 2017 at 7:29 pm

    Perhaps if all you’ve been drinking is white dog, this could come across as smooth. For the rest of you, run away from this not ready for prime time whisky. Mostly getting nail polish remover on the nose and palate. Maybe it’s more drinkable with a little water added. But I’m afraid I couldn’t afford the water bill adding enough water to make this appealing.

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