The 10 Best Bourbons
Samuel Muston is deputy editor & food editor of The Independent Magazine. He writes a weekly food column – On the Menu – which appears in The Independent on Friday and i on Monday. And also travel and general features. Follow him on Instagram at @smuston
Friday 09 March 2012
1. Baker's Seven-Year-Old
Known for its silky smoothness, the result of adding a special yeast to the mix, so it's a great substitute for after-dinner cognac. A Nutty flavour and unusual cherry tang.
2. Blanton's Original Single Barrel
White-oak matured, this is a complex drink on the tongue. First comes a hit of orange zest, then burnt sugar and vanilla.
Made to the original recipe created in the mid-19th century, it has an unusually high rye content that gives it a kicking spicy flavour and a crisp, honeyed finish.
4. Maker's Mark
It isn't the most sophisticated drink, but it has an inviting marmalade aroma and has a good balance between sweet and spicy. Great value, too.
Two hundred years of know-how go into every bottle of this maple-flavoured, rich and viscous bourbon. A delicious dark chocolate nose makes it worth a punt.
6. Buffalo Trace
For a bourbon at the lower end of the price spectrum, this isn't at all bad. It has a toffee flavour enlivened by the odd note of spice. Quite well balanced, too.
7. George T Stagg Kentucky Straight
This has won heaps of awards for its blow-your-socks-off power and deep sugar and spice flavour. Pricey, but worth it.
8. Knob Creek
Toasted nuts and oaky aromas in this bourbon. Rich and full-bodied, with lots of fruity flavours. Quite sharp, too, but mellows nicely with a drop of water.
9. Four Roses Small Batch
The Kentucky-based distillery's small-batch bourbon is made from blending four of Four Roses' whiskey bases. An instant caramel hit and a clean vanilla finish.
10. Aldi Clarke's Kentucky
Credit where it's due: this won a silver medal at the International Wine and Spirit Competition. Rich in unusually dainty oak flavours, with a remarkable price tag.
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