American Whiskey

American whiskey comprises a huge swath of sub-categories, and most of the whiskeys you’ll encounter fall into one of these. Bourbon (distinguished by its 51%-or-greater corn mashbill) is undoubtedly the largest of these, with Rye (at least 51% rye) arguably second. Tennessee Whiskey (a subset of Bourbon, made in Tennessee and charcoal mellowed) is another major, with Wheat Whiskey, Corn Whiskey, and Malt Whiskey all having their adherents. White whiskey (unaged whiskey) is another segment growing in size. Other categories, including Blended Whiskey, Light Whiskey, and Spirit Whiskey can also be found occupying this broad catch-all category.

Top American Whiskey Categories:

Bourbon
Tennessee Whiskey
Rye
Wheat Whiskey
American Single Malt

Review: Basil Hayden’s Bourbon

By Christopher Null | July 16, 2008 |

The crazy paper-and-metal-holding-ring label system doesn’t make Basil Hayden’s taste any better, but it does at lease make for a nice conversation piece. The thing looks like it belongs in an Old West saloon, but Basil Hayden is a far cry from rotgut firewater. This is classy, easygoing bourbon, pure and simple. Basil Hayden’s is…

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Review: Corner Creek Bourbon

By Christopher Null | June 25, 2008 |

All week people have been asking about the odd, brown wine on the Drinkhacker “to review” shelf. It ain’t Chardonnay. It’s Corner Creek Reserve Bourbon Whiskey, which is sold in a traditional white wine bottle, much to the confusion of passers-by. Corner Creek is an artisan bourbon, aged eight years in oak, bottled at 88…

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Review: Gentleman Jack (2008)

By Christopher Null | January 28, 2008 |

Few liquor brands are as heralded as Jack Daniel’s, but it’s never been a favorite of mine. Too harsh for sipping and lacking character even in a Coke, Jack has just not been a big winner for me. And not for lack of trying. You can’t go to a bar or a party without being…

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Review: Old Whiskey River Bourbon 6 Years Old

By Christopher Null | December 26, 2007 |

Looking for a bourbon you can knock back — the better part of bottle, really — and never notice you were drinking it? Meet your match. Old Whiskey River is perhaps the smoothest whiskey I’ve ever had. I was shocked to see it was 86 proof. It could have been iced tea for all I…

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Review: Blanton’s Single Barrel Bourbon (2007)

By Christopher Null | December 20, 2007 |

You’ll know it by the little horse and rider on the stopper and the grenade-shaped bottle. At $45 a bottle, you’ll often find this in the lockup at your local liquor store. As bourbons go, it’s unique: All bottles are single-barrel bottlings, which means that a glass will vary from state to state and store…

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Review: Bulleit Bourbon

By Christopher Null | November 28, 2007 |

I love the Bulleit guys. I have honestly never met friendlier people in the course of my travels. Gracious, honest, and plain spoken, I’d drink Bulleit even if it tasted like swill just because I think it would make me a better person. Fortunately, Bulleit’s “Frontier Whiskey” is plenty good going down the hatch. Bulleit…

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Review: Four Roses Single Barrel Bourbon

By Christopher Null | November 25, 2007 |

This is a classic sipping bourbon. Once you get through the alcoholic heat (splash some water in the glass; at 100 proof it needs it), you’ll find a rich, oaky flavor, some maple syrup, some vanilla, and a nicely sweet finish. The vague herbal notes are interesting, and picking them out — sage? rosemary? it’s…

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Recipe: The Turkey Trot Cocktail

By Christopher Null | November 24, 2007 |

Need a pick-me-up to go with all those Thanksgiving leftovers? Try this — utterly holiday appropriate — little concoction. The Turkey Trot 1 1/4 oz. bourbon 3/4 oz. cranberry juice 1/4 oz. Licor 43 Shake with ice in a cocktail shaker, strain into a cocktail glass, and garnish with a cranberry. Add more bourbon for…

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Review: Wild Turkey American Spirit Bourbon 15 Years Old

By Christopher Null | November 10, 2007 |

I came to Wild Turkey’s latest bottling, American Spirit, with much excitement: It’s a 15-year-old bonded bourbon, 100 proof, produced in small batches, and limited to 24,000 bottles worldwide. What’s not to like? Unfortunately, there’s not much excitement once it hits the glass. This is an easy-sipping bourbon, but its vanilla, caramel, and woody flavors…

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Review: Russell’s Reserve Rye (2007)

By Christopher Null | November 1, 2007 |

There’s a dearth of good, affordable rye whiskey on the market. While I swear by Old Overholt, I welcome competition in the form of Russell’s Reserve (from the same folks that make Wild Turkey), a rye that, at $25, isn’t as cheap as Overholt but isn’t in the stratosphere like some high-end bottlings. Russell’s is…

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