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Bourbon Whiskey

The quintessential American libation, Bourbon conjures images of corn fields and little streams cutting their way through Kentucky. Kentucky is Bourbon country in spirit and, indeed, in name. For when the American pioneers first colonized the country, they divided up the land and one plot, which covered much of what is now Kentucky, was named Bourbon, for the French Royal Family.

The county was formed in 1786. Originally part of Virginia, it was not until 1792 that Bourbon County was transferred to the new State of Kentucky. There was a great quantity of corn-based whiskey produced in the area, and it was shipped from a port on the Ohio River, which lay in Bourbon County. The barrels were stamped with their origin, ‘Old Bourbon’, and thus the name stuck. The principal distinction in Bourbon whiskey is the make up of the mash bill. The mash bill is the list of cereal grains used for distillation. Bourbon is distilled from 51% corn, differing it from other American spirits. Other grains are used including wheat, rye and barley.

Distillation is achieved in a pot still before ageing in new, charred oak barrels. The use of charred barrels is credited, by and large, to Reverend Elijah Craig. Such claims are not necessarily reliable, but the story is worth mentioning, for it is so oft told. The significance of this is decidedly great, for the Scotch whisky industry uses a proliferation of ex bourbon barrels, as do the rum and tequila fraternities. Elijah kept an outhouse, in which he stored his barrels and one day, a fire tore through the building, blackening his casks. The reverend filled his scorched barrels regardless, and found the charred inners imparted a vanilla sweetness and a rich hue.

Once a bourbon barrel has been emptied, it cannot be reused, thus they are shipped for use overseas. The spirit is aged for two years and bottled at a minimum of 40% alcohol by volume. There has been that more recent phenomenon of small batch and high end bourbons. The market for these is substantial and ever-growing, as consumers lean toward quality over quantity. Single barrel offerings and artisan products are of increasing popularity.

Bourbon Whiskey

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Bourbon Whisky Across Countries

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Blanton's Straight From The Barrel bourbon is a serious treat, especially for those of us who love their whiskies at cask strength. This batch comes from barrel 68 and has been bottled at a mighty...  More info
$136.14
STRICTLY 1 PER CUSTOMER

Autumn is always exciting. Not because it means Christmas is on the way and Halloween is just around the corner, but because it means the yearly edition of George T. Stagg...  More info
$228.56
Blanton's was originally introduced in 1984, and it's the first official single barrel bourbon. It is matured in white oak. It is produced at the Buffalo Trace distillery.  More info
User Rating:  Rating (5.0/5)
$88.98
A smashing gift set of Buffalo Trace Kentucky Straight Bourbon, a cocktail book and a Julep Tin. These metal cups would traditionally be used for Mint Juleps, a tasty cocktail of bourbon, spearmint...  More info
Was: $50.37
Now: $36.44
An absolutely superb single barrel bourbon. Wine Enthusiast rate this 96 points, commenting: "Wow". Rock Hill Farms was also Recommended by Whisky Magazine.  More info
User Rating:  Rating (4.0/5)
$125.90
STRICTLY 1 PER CUSTOMER

An intense 17 year old from Buffalo Trace, Eagle Rare is much thicker than some of the other small batch releases from the distillery.  More info
User Rating:  Rating (3.0/5)
$206.05
STRICTLY 1 PER CUSTOMER

Part of Buffalo Trace's 2013 edition of their Antique Collection, The William Laure Weller Bourbon doesn't fail to make an impression. Bottled at "barrel proof", a...  More info
$212.54
A staggering bourbon from Four Roses, this is made by the Master Distiller who hand-selects four whiskeys from the company's ten different recipes and creates Small Batch. These bourbons are aged for...  More info
$196.35
A 75cl bottle of Buffalo Trace's stunning bourbon William Larue Weller, named after the man famed for being the first to create "wheated bourbon", in which the spicy rye grain is substituted for wheat...  More info
User Rating:  Rating (4.5/5)
$61.80
Blanton's Gold Edition
(70cl, 51.50%)
A superb single barrel bourbon, bottled at cask strength. Blanton's Gold is distilled from a mashbill of corn, rye and malted barley. Each bottle is hand filled, sealed, labeled and individually...  More info
User Rating:  Rating (4.5/5)
Celebrate the 125th anniversary of Four Roses Bourbon in the best way possible: by raising a glass of this limited edition small batch, barrel strength bourbon. It is an expertly married mix of 3 ages...  More info
$158.60
From the Rock Town Distillery in beautiful Arkansas, comes their Arkansas Bourbon Whiskey (previously known as the Arkansas Young Bourbon, which won Double Gold in the Small Batch Bourbon 10 Years and...  More info
$67.19
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