Although Blanton’s, the world’s first single-barrel bourbon model, was created particularly for the Japanese market within the early ’80s, it will in the end impression the American business in a profound means.
Together with the “small-batch” releases that emerged at the same time, the then-innovative apply of bottling bourbon pulled from a single barrel helped the class develop a premium repute, and aided distillers in clawing again a big chunk of the spending drinkers had diverted towards vodka, gin, and Scotch.
Today, single barrel releases are a typical fixture at liquor shops, with most of the main distilleries providing a minimum of one common expression. It’s an indication each of the progress the bourbon business has made in these intervening a long time, and the fervor with which whiskey drinkers have taken to the type.
In reality, such is the urge for food for single-barrel releases that many distilleries supply barrel-pick applications. By way of these experiences, people, retailers, and bars and eating places can play the position of grasp distiller or blender, and buy a whole barrel that they’ve hand chosen, leading to their very own, one-of-a-kind single-barrel bottling.
For the needs of this roundup, VinePair restricted inclusion to everlasting traces provided by manufacturers (reasonably than additionally contemplating barrel picks). Provided that the very goal of a single-barrel launch is that every expression can be distinctive in its persona, think about that among the descriptors received’t be true for each bottle from the listed expression. However relaxation assured that if it’s on this listing, we’re assured of the road’s high quality and consistency general.
Listed here are the 12 greatest single-barrel bourbons for 2022.
Evan Williams Single Barrel (2014 Classic)
Few bottles supply the identical bang for buck because the annual Evan Williams single-barrel classic launch. Usually aged for one of the best a part of a decade, this expression is constantly approachable and balanced, with the newest 2014 classic providing an fulfilling mixture of winter baking spices, candy vanilla, and refined hints of toasted oak. Bottled at 43.3 % ABV, it leaves a light-weight impression on the palate that lends it to weekday sipping.
Common worth: $30
4 Roses Single Barrel
Made utilizing a high-rye mash invoice and bottled between 7 and 9 years outdated, this tends to be an expressive single-barrel launch. The bottling tasted for this roundup (Warehouse GE / Barrel 39-1 R) delivers fruity, cake batter sweetness on the nostril blended with savory rye spice and vanilla. The palate dials every of these parts up a notch or two then finishes with a velvety, saccharine kiss.
Common worth: $48
1792 Single Barrel Bourbon
Produced on the Sazerac-owned Barton 1792 Distillery, this launch showcases the decadent aspect of bourbon. Peanut and caramelized banana aromas open the nostril, adopted by heat, toasted oak. The palate has nice focus of taste and serves a cleaning tart sweetness on its prolonged end.
Common worth: $49
Redemption Excessive Rye Bourbon Single Barrel Choose
This sourced, high-rye bottling is made utilizing a 60 % corn, 36 % rye, and 4 % barley mash invoice. Bottled with out chill-filtration, at a pleasing 105 proof, it dances between candy and savory notes. Crème brûlée and fudge meet oak on the nostril, whereas caraway and rye spice lead the cost on the palate.
Common worth: $49
New Riff Single Barrel Bourbon (Spring 2016)
New Riff’s Single Barrel line is made with a high-rye mash invoice (30 %), with every expression bottled at cask energy and aged for at least 4 years. Within the case of the Spring 2016 launch (cask 16-10276 tasted for this roundup) that alcohol content material lands at a comparatively pedestrian 53.05 % ABV. Seamlessly included all through, the whiskey is awash with notes of potpourri, enticing oak, and dried berries. This producer’s repute continues to go from energy to energy amongst bourbon drinkers, and with good purpose.
Common worth: $57
Milam & Greene Whiskey Single Barrel Bourbon
Primarily based in Texas, Milam & Greene is an independently owned whiskey firm that provides each proprietary distilled and sourced releases. The latter is true of its single-barrel line, with Tennessee being the origin of the Cask No. 195 bottling tasted for this overview. Fruit notes that just about strategy the vibrancy of bubblegum combine with maple sweetness on the nostril. The palate exudes ripe banana, with an general palate that tastes “craft” and brims with persona.
Common worth: $57
Stellum Single Barrel ‘Lyra’
A part of Stellum Spirits’ sourced single-barrel line, the Lyra picks had been made within the spring and summer season of 2021 and include a mash invoice of 75 % corn, 21 % rye, and 4 % barley. Bottled a horse’s hair shy of 60 % ABV, this bourbon is a giant hitter. Anticipate burnt sugar and maple syrup on the nostril, adopted by an intense and oaky palate. A number of drops of water go an extended approach to taming this one however in no way are they obligatory.
Common worth: $58
Baker’s 7 12 months Previous Single Barrel Bourbon
Although it debuted as a part of Booker Noe’s “Small Batch Assortment” throughout the Jim Beam household, Baker’s relaunched in 2019 as a 7-year-old, single-barrel bourbon. A short while in glass sees the nostril open up gracefully, with rye spice, dried petal, and dried fruit aromas main the cost. Thrilling spice then ignites the palate. And when these stormy waters lastly begin to settle, a candy nutty word lingers on the end, which appears to go on, and on, and on.
Common worth: $60
George Dickel Single Barrel Aged 15 Years
Positive, this bottle is technically labeled as a single-barrel Tennessee whisky, however its manufacturing adheres to all the bottling and labeling requirements for bourbon. Age-wise, we’re speaking most bang for buck right here, whereas the profile will bowl over anybody with a candy tooth. Put together for waffles, ice cream, and toffee on the nostril; savory sweetness on the palate; and an expensive, weighty mouthfeel.
Common worth: $66
Henry McKenna Single Barrel 10 Years
Among the many most beloved expressions in Heaven Hill’s expansive portfolio, this 10-year-old, 100-proof single-barrel launch is expressive and simple to take pleasure in. Stone fruit, pecans, and toffee make up the nostril, whereas the palate chips in spice and toasted oak. A pleasant steadiness between alcohol and taste focus results in energetic, long-lasting sips. We’d nonetheless purchase it on the listed common worth, but when yow will discover it priced nearer to its MSRP ($50), you’re getting a good higher deal.
Common worth: $85
Barrell Craft Spirits Bourbon Single Barrel Bottled
Barrel Craft Spirits positive aspects a lot (well-earned) reward and recognition for its prowess as a blender of sourced whiskeys. We’re leaping into a distinct lane right here with this single-barrel launch (barrel Z3H5) however the outcomes are equally as spectacular. Distilled in Kentucky, this whiskey provides engaging notes of complicated oak on the nostril, whereas the 59 % ABV warmth blows off right away. Warming baking spices kick off the palate, adopted by candy, toasty oak and vibrant fruit.
Common worth: $115
Elijah Craig 18-12 months-Previous Single Barrel
Launched in restricted portions each fall, Elijah Craig 18-12 months-Previous appears to defy the legal guidelines of physics: Whereas there are apparent indicators of oak and maturation, this bourbon maintains the class and freshness of bottles half its age, with no trace in any respect of the liquid beginning to really feel drained. However through its prolonged interval in cask, this whiskey positive aspects further layers of aromas and flavors, which come collectively as one elegant, harmonious entity. A lightweight trace of tannins provides textural complexity however the general profile is spritely.
Common worth: $344 (MSRP: $150)