For those looking to break into the world of bourbon, Mashed.com, an internet lifestyle website compiled a list of the top 15 best bourbons for beginners. These approachable whiskeys not only taste great on their own or mixed with your favorite mixer, but they should be able to be purchased for under $100. There is no reason to shell out for more expensive bourbon until you can really appreciate it.
15. Wild Turkey: Wild Turkey is aged in new oak barrels. In addition, the company uses American White Oak which has been heavily charred.
14. Four Roses Small Batch: Four Roses Small Batch is aged six to seven years and offers fruity and slightly spicy notes.
13. Knob Creek 9 Year Bourbon: Be forewarned, this bourbon packs a heck of a punch at 100 proof.
12. 1792 Bourbon: The resulting bourbon offers the peppery and spicy rye flavor with the sweet caramel notes of a corn bourbon.
11. Michter’s US 1 Kentucky Straight Bourbon: The holding tank used for blending the bourbon whiskey only allows for twenty barrels of bourbon to be incorporated at a time.
10. Bulleit Bourbon: This higher percentage of rye gives it a spicy, bold flavor with notes of nutmeg, as well as sweeter notes such as maple and toffee.
9. Basil Hayden: The mash contains a high rye content, giving it a spicy note. Basil Hayden is aged in lightly charred oak barrels.
8. Buffalo Trace: Buffalo Trace is a deep amber color, with notes of mint and molasses. It has a sweet opening pallet but a long, robust finish.
7. Eagle Rare: Eagle Rare provides an excellent entrance, with room to grow as you develop a pallet for higher age statement bourbons.
6. Jefferson’s Very Small Batch: The Jefferson’s Very Small Batch bourbon is a unique blend of Jefferson’s Bourbon and three additional bourbons.
5. Russell’s Reserve 10 year: Russell’s Reserve 10 year is smooth, with tastes of vanilla and toffee and hints of citrus.
4. Widow Jane 10 Year: It features notes of cream and spice, with hints of cherry and almond.
3. Elijah Craig Small Batch: The blend is rich and spicy with the lovely light smokiness afforded to it by using the charred oak barrels
2. Maker’s Mark: Maker’s is also a company that a bourbon drinker can grow with.
1. Woodford Reserve: The bottle of Woodford Reserve is minimalistic, allowing the beautiful clear amber of the bourbon to speak for itself.
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