June 19th, 2012, 07:44 PM
The American whiskey thread
Scotch is magical juice and gets plenty of love here and everywhere which is obviously well-deserved. The history, mystique, complexity, deliciousness.... it's all there in spades. But after drinking it almost exclusively for a decade, I stumbled upon a new found taste and respect for American whiskeys that just kept growing. I still love and buy Scotch, but for several years now I reach for American much more often than their relatives from across the pond.
I have zero interest in stoking the ever boring and pointless "which is better...?" debate. They're both heavenly and too different to compare, and there's plenty of room in the world of spirits for both to be enjoyed and appreciated. So that said, I'm curious to see what you all like, dislike, want, or have on your shelves. I've personally fallen deeply for the spicy dryness of Rye. But the complex and comforting sweet corn nuances of bourbon also warms my soul.
A couple of current favorites:
Wild Turkey Rye 101 (green label). My first ever Rye and house bottle ever since. For $18 bucks the smoothness, balance, and admirable complexity is hard to beat. I've poured through a couple of cases over the years--one or two ounces at a time. Seems to be off shelves at the moment while they roll out a weaker model. I'll cry if the 101 doesn't come back locally.
Thomas H. Handy Sazerac rye is one of the most incredible, complex and delicious whiskey's I've ever tasted. Expensive, but still a bargain for this level of pleasure.
Buffalo Trace Bourbon. For $20 it's crazy how rich, long, and delicious this is. My house bourbon now that it's finally stocked locally.
George T. Stagg bourbon is one that I picked up recently and at 146 proof needs to settle into some water, but when it does it's mind blowing. Even more $ than the Handy, but truly special stuff.