I thought I would take some time to reflect on my recent American Whiskey series. It started as an opportunity for me to taste some of the great Bourbons I've read about but never tried (as well as some new versions of old favorites) and grew into a ten part tasting of 8 Bourbons, one rye and one Tennessee Whiskey.
I have to say, looking back at the ten week venture, I am floored at the great quality of Bourbon that is available today. So much of what I tasted was fantastic, and so much of it offered unique flavor profiles - Bourbon is anything but a one-note wonder. The prices on these whiskies ranged from $13 for Very Old Barton (if you're lucky enough to live somewhere where they sell it) to over $150 for A.H. Hirsch, but the vast majority of these were in the $30 to $50 range. In a world of whiskey inflation, Bourbon remains a very reasonable drink, even for the high falutin' ones.
After opening and tasting all of these (per usual, I buy my own bottles...except for the Stagg, a sample of which was generously provided by my brother), the ones I keep returning to are Parker's Heritage, Pappy Van Winkle, Very Old Barton and A.H. Hirsch. Rock Hill Farms and Old Forester Birthday Bourbon were good whiskies, but didn't live up to the others. The only one in the series that I genuinely disliked was Jack Daniel's Single Barrel.
So, drink Bourbon. There is so much out there to enjoy that is so affordable, it would be a crime not to. And if you find something great, let us know.
Next Week: Back to Scotland