Whiskey Business: Celebrate National Bourbon Day Like A Boss (Even If You’re New to It)
Photo: Caiaimage/Rafal Rodzoch (Getty Images)
This Friday is National Bourbon Day. But, it’s not as if this barrel-aged, sweet yet spirited whiskey needs its own day. But if you’re new to bourbon, now’s the time.
One of the best aspects of bourbon whiskey is its adaptability. It’s perfectly suited for slow sipping on a deck overlooking a body of water (or the backyard), but it’s also a great base for some of the easiest, most delicious cocktails ever invented. Weekend chores can wait, this stuff is too good not to celebrate.
Check out some of our favorite non-Kentucky bourbons below, then see how it feels on those taste buds.
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Balcones Texas Pot Still Bourbon (Texas)
In the last few years, Texas has quietly begun making award-winning whiskey. One of the best (and also the first) is Balcones. The Waco-based distillery’s Texas Pot Still Bourbon is creamy, sweet, and full of flavors like sweet corn, caramel, and leather.
Belle Meade Bourbon (Tennessee)
A few years ago, Charlie and Andy Nelson decided that the time was right to bring back the family distilling tradition. That’s why they opened Nelson’s Greenbrier Distillery in Nashville. The idea worked and the duo have gained acclaim for their whiskeys. One of their best is their Belle Mead Bourbon, a high-rye blend that has won numerous awards in the last few years.
Photo: Nelson’s Greenbriar Distillery
FEW Bourbon Whiskey (Illinois)
This award-winning bourbon is a mix of Southern hospitality, and Northern ingenuity. It’s made with the corn we expect, but it also has spicy rye. The result of a well-rounded whiskey with the sweetness of bourbon and the spice of rye whiskey.
High West Prairie Bourbon (Utah)
You almost can’t go wrong with any of High West’s whiskeys. And this bourbon is no different. It’s a blend of three different sourced bourbons, sits at 92 proof and is highly sippable, sweet, and rich.
Photo: High West
Hudson Baby Bourbon (New York)
No non-Kentucky bourbon list is complete without this offering from Tuthilltown Spirits. This 92-proof, award-winning 100 percent corn bourbon is aged in new charred American oak barrels. The result is a subtly sweet, smooth easy drinking bourbon.
Photo: Tuthilltown Spirits
Koval Single Barrel Bourbon (Illinois)
This 94-proof, small batch, unfiltered bourbon is made by the folks at Koval in Chicago. It’s made from the usual 51 percent corn, but it also contains millet, a gluten-free grain popular in Africa and Asia. It’s aged in new, charred American oak casks. The result is a whiskey with hints of caramel, vanilla, and a subtle pepper finish.