Wheat Whiskey

While some whiskeys can be “wheated,” where wheat is used as a flavoring grain (i.e. Maker’s Mark bourbon), wheat whiskey is actually a separate category, defined by whiskey made primarily from wheat. In the U.S., wheat whiskey follows the same requirements for production as bourbon, with the exception of the majority grain in the mashbill. Wheat whiskey must be at least 51% wheat, distilled to no more than 160 proof, enter the barrel at no more than 125 proof, aged in new, charred oak barrels, and bottled at no less than 80 proof. To be designated a straight wheat whiskey in the U.S., it must be aged at least two years. Wheat whiskey is only rarely produced by larger U.S. distillers, but smaller craft producers are experimenting more and more with the style. In Scotland, wheat whiskey is sometimes used in blended Scotch. It is also a common whiskey style in Germany.

Top Wheat Whiskey Posts:

Bernheim Original Wheat Whiskey
Masterson’s Straight Barley 10 Years Old and Straight Wheat Whiskey 12 Years Old
Parker’s Heritage Collection Original Batch Wheat Whiskey 13 Years Old (2014)

Review: TOPO Vodka, Wheat Whiskey, and Spiced Rum (2020)

By Drew Beard | March 16, 2020 |

We tasted the clear spirits of Top of the Hill Distillery (TOPO), including their white whiskey, way back in 2013. The Chapel Hill, North Carolina-based distillery has been hard at work tweaking, adding new products, and barrel-aging their whiskey since then, so we thought we would check in on their latest offerings. TOPO is one…

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Review: Dry Fly Distilling Straight Wheat Whiskey Finished in a Beer Barrel

By Christopher Null | January 20, 2020 |

It’s been several years since we last checked in with Washington-based Dry Fly Distilling, but we’re finally back with a look at a whiskey from its new Cask & Release Series, which involves partnerships with breweries to finish its whiskey in shared barrels. First up is this offering, a wheat whiskey finished in barrels from…

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Review: Bernheim Original Wheat Whiskey 7 Years Old (2019)

By Christopher Null | October 25, 2019 |

If you’re drinking wheat whiskey, there’s a good chance you’re drinking Bernheim Original. This brand, part of Heaven Hill, has been on the market since 2005 — we reviewed it in 2009 — and in 2014 the labeling was updated to include an age statement — 7 years old — a rejection of the more…

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Review: Woodford Reserve Wheat Whiskey

By Drew Beard | September 20, 2019 |

Without too much fanfare or forewarning, Woodford Reserve recently introduced a new addition to its permanent lineup. Woodford Reserve Wheat is the fifth whiskey in its full-time portfolio and a rare offering out of Kentucky. The only other majority wheat mashbill that I’m aware of is Heaven Hill’s Bernheim Original Wheat Whiskey, and like Bernheim,…

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Review: Old Elk Straight Rye Whiskey and Straight Wheat Whiskey (2019)

By Christopher Null | June 26, 2019 |

Former MGP master distiller Greg Metze’s Old Elk Distillery came out of the gate with a unique blended bourbon a couple of years ago, and now the line is expanding with two new expressions, a straight rye and a wheat whiskey. Like Old Elk Bourbon, both are sourced, their actual origins undisclosed. The company explained…

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Review: KO Distilling Bare Knuckle Bourbon, Rye, and Wheat Whiskey – Single Barrel Releases

By Christopher Null | June 16, 2019 |

Bare Knuckle is a brand from Manassas, Virginia-based KO Distilling, and the outfit produces (among other spirits) a range of young whiskeys made from local grains, all of which we reviewed early last year. Now the Bare Knuckle brand is expanding by rolling out cask strength, single barrel versions of its three core whiskeys —…

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Review: KO Distilling Bare Knuckle Bourbon, Rye, and Wheat Whiskey

By Christopher Null | March 28, 2018 |

KO Distilling calls Manassas, Virginia home, and this outfit, which opened its doors only in 2015, already has a significant portfolio to show off. Today we look at its collection of American whiskeys — a bourbon, a rye, and a wheat whiskey — all of which are made with grains sourced from local Virginia farms,…

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Review: Painted Stave Distilling SunSeeker Wheat Whiskey

By Christopher Null | November 16, 2017 |

Another belated solar eclipse-themed whiskey, SunSeeker is Smyrna, Delaware-based Painted Stave Distilling’s third limited release made from a base of craft beer. In January 2016, Painted Stave Distilling partnered with Fordham Brewing Company in Dover, DE on what would be become the third release in Painted Stave’s “Beers To Whiskey!” series. Painted Stave picked up over…

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Review: Whiskeys of Reservoir Distillery – Bourbon, Rye, Wheat Whiskey, and Gray Ghost

By Drew Beard | May 9, 2017 |

When deciding how to formulate their mashbills, Reservoir Distillery took one of the more unique approaches among craft whiskey-makers. They decided to not use a mashbill. Well, at least not a complicated one. Defying tradition, they concentrated on 100% grain expressions in their line up, all bottled at 100 proof. Their bourbon, for example, is 100%…

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Tasting Report: Whiskies of the World Expo San Francisco 2017

By Christopher Null | April 25, 2017 |

This year’s Whiskies of the World was shaping up beautifully, but a tragic tumble down the stairs (PSA: Don’t text and navigate staircases!) cut my evening very short. I had time to taste only a handful of spirits before leaving for treatment — shout-out to the crack ER team at Kaiser San Rafael! — but…

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