Notes of menthol and citrus spices lead to a rye and sweet popcorn finish. It comes in a beautiful bottle, which is also a great whiskey to give away. Affordable whiskey sounds counter-intuitive these days, with some players new to the block charging outrageous prices like $ 120 for a two-year-old rye and managing to get it. But while the outlook isn’t good for newer brands and import taxes may rise, there are still some bargains to be found. We scoured the market for a good affordable whiskey that would fit your budget and compiled a list of some of the best whiskeys under $ 25 that you can buy right now.
Bourbon is a category of whiskey defined by different kinds of regulations (geographic, grain composition, aging, testing, etc.), just like Scotch whiskey, Irish whiskey, Japanese whiskey, etc. However, it’s not that all bourbons have to be made in Kentucky, despite the high-profile rumor. On the nose, the freshly ripened Knob Creek 9 Year is classic Kentucky Bourbon, with notes of caramel corn, roasted peanuts, spicy cinnamon and moderate oak. This is largely in the middle of the bullseye, and I think that’s exactly what they were looking for: a bourbon benchmark.
Old Forester Signature 100 Proof Bourbon
In an increasingly fragmented and allocated whiskey market, Knob Creeks classic small-batch bourbon stands out. It’s our best bourbon overall, not because of life-changing tasting notes, but because we filled out the stats sheet like no other bourbon can. It’s widely available and therefore resistant to the price hike associated with brands like Buffalo Trace. Its 100-proof keeps a full body and honest blend without setting your mouth on fire. OGD 114, on the other hand, is one of the most extreme values on the entire bourbon market, if you take into account the tests and a respectable aging, supposedly 5-6 years. Legend has it that Elijah Craig invented bourbon when he was aging his whiskey in charred oak barrels.
Over time, the basic recipe for grain and water whiskey has developed in different directions, depending on the raw ingredients used, distillation methods, barrel types, maturation time and water used in production. In addition, a manufacturer’s “house style” will have specific flavors and influences from that particular distillery, similar to the influences found in single-site wines. The result is a world of whiskey that encompasses the entire spectrum of flavors. The mash bills are a bit different between the two, but I still honestly believe that the flagship Buffalo Trace is the top brand when it’s all said and done, and probably older than Blanton’s on average too, without the incredible ones Price ranges. Buffalo Trace has been made bourbon for more than 200 years and is known by various names and is a National Historic Landmark. Its spicy rye notes and warm caramel notes ensure a varied series of experiences throughout the drink.
Barrell Bourbon Charge 029 Rating
Regardless of the truthfulness of this story, I love the bourbon made in his honor for its versatility and value. The brand’s flagship Small Batch has received multiple awards and is known for its spicy, sweet and slightly smoky taste profile. The nose is laden with buttery caramel, sweet cream, charred oak, and just a hint of flavorful rye.
- Over time, the basic recipe for grain and water whiskey has developed in different directions, depending on the raw ingredients used, distillation methods, barrel types, maturation time and water used in production.
- In 2017, Jim Beam’s Old Grand Dad whiskey line was almost phased out.
- It is bottled at 90 degrees, but if you are looking for something stronger, the distillery also offers a barrel-proof version.
- Local traditions, laws and individual handicrafts shape the rest of the story.
- The taste is soft, honey-sweet and emphasized by notes of caramel, vanilla and subtle cinnamon.
Thanks to rising whiskey prices and a consistently strong product, the brand – OGD for short by fans – has meanwhile achieved cult status. Since it’s not a “hype” whiskey, it doesn’t have a famous name and it’s not a limited release that isn’t talked about, but I do challenge you to get a bourbon with this much firepower at this price point Find. Also unique is their relatively low corn puree, which uses an amazing amount of rye and malted barley, creating a tangy bourbon that’s great to drink over ice or in a cocktail. As our unofficial favorite under $ 20 bourbon bottle, Four Roses does a good job just changing the label year after year.
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It ends with a balanced pepper to sweet ratio, with charred oak that lingers for a long finish. Few whiskeys have had such a broad role as the prelude to a full sub-style as Maker is likely has for wheat bourbon, which is simply a bill of pureed bourbon in which the traditional rye has instead been replaced by a serving of wheat. “Wheat” is classically considered to be “softer” and sweeter than rye bourbons, replacing some of the hot spices with more delicate floral and fruity prints.
We hope to try the high rye bourbon that Bulleit distilled for himself one day and see if it ends up being significantly different, but until that day, their flagship brand is likely to remain a reliable option under $ 30 . Buffalo Trace Mash Bill # 1 Bourbons tend to offer a nice middle ground in terms of flavor profile – the fastball of the bourbon world. Rich vanilla, caramel, and cherry are often cited as signature tasting notes, and there’s a reason BT was the gateway for so many in the world of bourbon, at least before all of its products were sold. They Came So Hard To Find However, Buffalo Trace’s flagship bourbon is one of the few BT products that can still be good value as long as you can find it around the MSRP $ 25. Hopefully never try to sell bottles of this for $ 100 or $ 200, people will see $ how they do it with Blanton.
The 12 Best Under $ 50 Bourbons To Drink In 2021
With a heavy bill for rye puree, Old Grand Dad 114 has so many layers of flavor that you could easily pay double the price. In the mouth notes of leather, oak, pepper, vanilla and citrus fruits are obtained. I recommend letting this sit for a day after opening and doing it justice by drinking it on your own.
Four Roses Small Batch has an average aging of 6-7 years and offers some nice impressions of citrus, stone and red fruits as well as a variety of rye, oak, mint and light caramel spices. As with the four roses, the rye is definitely there, but here, too, there is a bourbon that manages to combine the spiciness of the rye with a considerable sweetness – something that some bourbon drinkers may never have experienced. Four Roses Small Batch is also very easy to drink, to the point that some may lack assertiveness, but that is exactly what makes cigars an effortless sip. I find the flavor profile of the brand “love it or hate it” to be a scenario for many drinkers, but the back combination of fruit, sweetness and flavor / mint always has one that I’m eager to return to. Outside of Kentucky, you can find distilleries making bourbon in almost every state today, from small artisan businesses to larger, up-and-coming establishments.
Top 10 Affordable Whiskeys Under $ 35
With a puree that contains 95 percent rye grain, this is a sweet and sour whiskey with notes of fruit and mint. You will hardly find a milder, sweeter, and slightly spicy 100-proof bourbon in this price range that is better suited for mixing in cocktails. It’s made using a sour mashing process and its mashed beak is made from 84 percent corn, 8 percent rye, and 8 percent malted barley. Within each fine beverage category there is at least some correlation between price and quality, but for bourbon this general rule of thumb is more true than it is for many other spirits really not at the end of the scale. In 2017, Jim Beam’s Old Grand Dad whiskey line was almost phased out.
Maple caramel, caramel, vanilla pod, ground black pepper and cinnamon sugar stand out on the palate. The finish is dry, sweet and filled with a symphony of pepper, vanilla and cinnamon spices. Maker’s Mark is known for its pureed wheat beak with 70 percent corn, 16 percent red winter wheat and 14 percent malted barley. In contrast to a tall rye and bourbon puree note, Maker’s has a smoother, smoother profile that has become the trademark of the brand. The introduction in 2020 of Maker Mark of a draft-protected version (or “barrel strength”) of their iconic Bourbon offered budget-conscious consumers the opportunity to finally enjoy a full-bodied, high-octane version of their high-octane profile.
In these two decades they have won numerous awards for their rich, soft and not too sweet blend. Buy a 750ml bottle for around $ 25 and enjoy the touch of aniseed with vanilla and oak. The Single Barrel Vintage is the highest quality bourbon bottle from Evan Williams. Coming from a single barrel, the experience is a little different every year, but always very good. It’s smooth with an excellent balance between sweetness and flavor.
It’s still a mix of the same 10 recipes from his unique distillery, and both the taste and quality never decrease. The Alt Grand Dad line is made with Beam’s high rye puree bill (27% rye), which produces a tangy and somewhat wild whiskey than the juice that is included in the standard white label, with pronounced notes of citrus, paprika and light leather . Along with the cheesy sweetness and toasted peanuts you come to expect from younger beam bourbons. This is a great way for drinkers to take their first foray into overproof bourbon in general and maybe dip a finger on the more bombastic side of the spectrum before exploring more barrel-proof whiskeys. It’s not the only Beam Bourbon we’ll be talking about on the middle shelf, either.
Many years ago, this was the bourbon that introduced me to the world of bourbon, so I owe it a lot. This award-winning whiskey is equally known for its consistently low price as well as its 100% robust, slightly spicy taste. Made from handpicked barrels, its high alcohol content and balanced taste make it one of the most affordable bourbon cocktail options on the market. The aromas of cooking spices, brown sugar, charred oak and light caramel are heavy on the nose.
Suffice it to say, this is a brand that has converted many and will convert many more. Not that it really matters too much; What’s on the shelf still tastes like a classic Tall Roye bourbon, and if it’s not Four Roses juice yet, it’s a pretty good knockoff. You get the combination of more spices, spicy rye bread and baking spices along with the slightly sweeter, fruity profile that 4R has in common, which makes Bulleit an interesting combination of rye-driven fullness and seasoning. It is not for nothing that it has been successfully launched on the market as a “bourbon cocktail” for years, because the rye puree note creates a taste profile that shines really well on an old-fashioned weekend evening or a Manhattan night.
Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey Theft
The flagship Maker’s Mark is still a charming and approachable bourbon that’s especially great for the casual sip, though it also gets along pretty old-fashioned well if you prefer it on the sweeter side. Caramel, cinnamon, citrus and vanilla cream are classic flavors here, along with a more bread-like toast, but it’s pretty close to the bullseye that many bourbon drinkers imagine when they think of brown liquors. Maker’s Mark appears to be particularly mild in terms of ethanol presence with its’ 90s proof, making it a particularly attractive option for first-time bourbon drinkers.