Bourbon is the unquestioned king of American whiskey, its production dating back to the 1700s. While bourbon is invariably associated with Kentucky, where 95 percent of all bourbon is produced today, in reality it can be produced anywhere in the U.S. (though only Kentucky Bourbon can include the name of the state on the label). By U.S. law, bourbon must be made from a mash of at least 51% corn; be aged in new, charred oak containers; distilled to no more than 160 proof, entered into barrel at no more than 125 proof, and bottled at a minimum of 80 proof. Contrary to popular opinion, there’s no minimum aging requirement for bourbon, although straight bourbon must be aged for at least two years and cannot have added coloring. One of the most popular spirits in today’s drinking world, bourbon prices have been on the rise as stocks have dwindled — although massive investments in the industry promise to ease those supply pressures in coming years.

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Review: Lost Lantern Spring 2022 Single Cask Releases

By Christopher Null | March 20, 2022 |

Lost Lantern is a fairly new independent bottler of American whiskeys, and it lately seems to have really hit its stride. For Spring 2022, it’s dropping four new single cask whiskeys, some with some truly unusual finishing applied. We were fortunate enough to get the full quartet — none of which yielded more than 272…

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Review: Nine Banded Bourbon, Wheated Bourbon, and Wheated Bourbon Cask Strength

By Christopher Null | March 19, 2022 |

Nine Banded hit the scene in 2019 with a blended whiskey, made from Kentucky stock and mixed up in Austin, Texas. Now we’re back with three new releases from the brand. They’re all made from Indiana-based MGP stock now, but again they’re all proofed with local, limestone-heavy water (which may explain one commenter’s note about…

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Review: Kentucky Owl St. Patrick’s Limited Edition Bourbon

By Drew Beard | March 5, 2022 |

Kentucky Owl jumped into 2021 with a bit of an odd holiday-themed release, Kentucky Owl St. Patrick’s Edition. Before you get too befuddled about being persuaded to substitute a Kentucky bourbon for the Irish whiskey typically used to celebrate the occasion, allow Kentucky Owl to explain: For this special release, Kentucky Owl Master Blender John…

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Review: Five Brothers Bourbon

By Christopher Null | March 4, 2022 |

The five brothers in question are the Shapira brothers, one of whose son is now the president of Heaven Hill, which is making this under-the-radar bottling. Max Shapira’s father and his brothers started Heaven Hill back in 1935 — the date’s on the label of the bottle — and this new release is produced in…

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Review: Distillery 291 Bad Guy Bourbon, High Rye Bourbon (2022), and E Whiskey

By Monica Uhm | March 2, 2022 |

For the latest releases from Distillery 291 Colorado Whiskey, the baton has been passed on to me from Drew and Christopher as Drinkhacker revisits the latest batch of  HR (High Rye) Colorado Bourbon Whiskey and takes a first look at the Bad Guy Colorado Bourbon Whiskey and limited release of E (Experimental) Whiskey. Let’s see what…

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Review: The Old Man of the Mountain Bourbon 4 Years Old

By Christopher Null | February 27, 2022 |

Tamworth Distilling doesn’t just make weird stuff like venison-flavored and turkey-flavored whiskey. It also makes regular old whiskey too, including this bonded bourbon, a four year old made on site in its pot still in New Hampshire. The mashbill includes 82.4% organic yellow corn, 11% organic rye, and 6.6% malted barley. Let’s dive in. The nose…

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Review: Bardstown Bourbon Fusion Series #6 and Discovery Series #6

By Drew Beard | February 24, 2022 |

Bardstown Bourbon Co. is kicking off 2022 with what else, their bi-annual Fusion and Discovery Series releases which now number six in total. This bourbon duo impressed us at launch back in 2019, and while the Discovery Series release has remained consistently top notch, the Fusion Series struggled a bit in 2021. Let’s see how…

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Book Review: The Atlas of Bourbon & American Whiskey

By Rob Theakston | February 23, 2022 |

In what is becoming an increasingly gluttonous market of bourbon and American whiskey-related books, the ability to stand out and provide a new perspective grows ever more challenging. How many times does one need to read about mashbill recipes before wanting to hurl themselves into a fermentation tank? How many times does one need to…

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Review: Redemption Bourbon Cognac Cask Finish

By Christopher Null | February 21, 2022 |

Redemption Whiskey recently announced a few new bottlings as part of a new Whiskey Specialty Series (alternately called the Cask Series), including a wheated bourbon, a rum cask finished bourbon, and this bottling, which is finished in Ferrand Cognac casks. It’s all rye-heavy MGP bourbon to start with, as it’s always been, and there’s no…

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Review: Barrell Gold Label Bourbon

By Drew Beard | February 14, 2022 |

Barrell has lately been finding lots of different ways to show off its stocks of older Indiana, Kentucky, and Tennessee bourbons. For starters, some has been finding its way into their standard Batch blends, which has likely contributed to the consistently high quality of that line in recent years. The introduction of the Gray Labels in…

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