Bottled-in-bond whiskeys are a great product that is terribly underrated in our opinion. This trend has begun to change in the last couple of years, but you still need to look in the bottom shelves if you want to buy a bottle of bonded whiskey. This is quite unfortunate for the bottled-in-bond whiskey as a drink, but pretty good for you as a consumer because you can buy high-quality whiskey at a very reasonable price. In this review, we are going to take a look at our top picks for bottled-in-bond whiskeys you can (and should!) buy in 2019.
Don’t let the word “bourbon” fool you – it’s just a term for whiskey produced in the US. This excellent whiskey is produced by the Buffalo Trace distillery, and we don’t think it’s an understatement to say that the E.H. Taylor Small Batch is one of the best bottled-in-bond whiskeys we’ve reviewed. Its flavor has a certain hint of sweetness to it, which is probably due to the caramel corn. The aftertaste of this amazing drink tastes of pepper and tobacco, and it leaves a pleasant soft sensation in your mouth.
We think that the best way to serve this excellent bourbon is by pouring it over a couple of ice cubes to really intensify all the smallest taste accents, but, of course, you can also drink it neat or add your favorite cocktail bitter to it. Between the awesome taste and the very attractive price tag, there’s nothing we can criticize about this bonded whiskey, so don’t hesitate to grab a bottle before the price goes up!
If you like drinks with an almost romantic history to them, the Henry McKenna Single Barrel whiskey might just be up your alley. This quality drink is named after a smart Irish immigrant who found a way to keep making whiskey according to his family recipe despite the differences between Irish and American grains he could get his hands on in Kentucky. This bonded whiskey has been around for over 150 years, and if that’s not a guarantee of quality, we don’t know what is. Its refined taste has maintained a surprisingly low profile for decades, but now critics and whiskey lovers all over the world are starting to notice the Henry McKenna bourbon and finally give the drink the appreciation it deserves.
What’s even more surprising, the rising number of fans and prestigious awards seem to have no impact on the price tag; the Henry McKenna bonded whiskey still remains a very affordable product despite its excellent quality. Still, there’s a catch, as you may not be able to easily find this whiskey in your local stores or even online, so be sure to snatch yourself a bottle if you happen to see one.
Unlike our previous entry, this whiskey is a fairly recent addition to the market, but it’s still very much worth checking out. This bourbon is aged by at least four years before you get to drink it, and is bottled at 100 proof. This alone is a good indicator of a quality whiskey, but you won’t need any guarantees or indicators once you’ve tasted the McKenzie bonded whiskey. Its flavor is just sweet enough to leave a pleasant aftertaste, in addition to being deep and soft.
Wheated whiskey is not a common thing to see, and you might think that wheat and quality bourbon don’t belong together, but a bottle of McKenzie wheated whiskey is all it is going to take to convince you otherwise. You may still love the taste of corn, rye, or barley whiskey, but the light yet prominent taste of this drink won’t leave you disappointed. If you find that most bourbons you try have a little too much bite to them, you must try this whiskey and enjoy its soft, rich taste with very little bite.
It’s no surprise that our list wouldn’t be complete if we didn’t include a whiskey produced by Woodford Reserve. Well-known both domestically and outside of the US, Woodford Reserve is a reputable distillery that takes the quality of its products very seriously. You can’t go wrong with any of the Woodford Reserve spirits, and their Distillery Series is definitely no exception to the rule. Every whiskey in the series spends at least one year in custom-made oak barrels, which obviously contribute to the final taste.
If you are lucky enough to get your hands on several different whiskeys from the series, you’ll see how they are united by a soft, yet distinct taste that blends into unique flavors when subjected to different filtration techniques. In addition, all drinks in the Distillery Series spend different amounts of time in the Woodford Reserve oak barrels, and you can really taste how that one extra year spent inside a barrel can create a much more sweet, spicy flavor as compared to less aged whiskeys. Watch out for the limited runs of the Distillery Series to make sure that you are actually able to taste at least one of these amazing bourbons.
When it comes to winning the love of whiskey lovers, it is only true passion for your product that matters in the end. Tom’s Foolery is a small distillery that also happens to be a farm, and it would never have got to enjoy the recognition it has today if it wasn’t for the outstanding quality of their distilled spirits. Founded a little over 10 years ago, Tom’s Foolery has come a very long way and gained thousands of fans all over the world. Today, bonded whiskey is far from being the only Tom’s Foolery product, but it is still produced with loving care that makes Tom’s Foolery Bonded Bourbon such a unique drink.
Experimenting with different manufacturing techniques and ingredients has allowed Tom’s Foolery to come up with this amazing bonded whiskey, which is considered one of their best products by many whiskey enthusiasts. They also have a farm right next to the distillery, so rest assured that your new favorite bonded whiskey is produced from high-quality, local corn, barley malt, and rye.
Rittenhouse chose to use rye as a main source of flavor for their whiskey, and it’s hard not to agree with their decision once you’ve tasted it. This whiskey will make you think of a vibrant spring meadow that’s covered with fresh, juicy grass and lots of flowers each giving its unique scent to the air. Its straightforward taste is probably the main reason why it’s consistently been winning over the hearts of whiskey fans all over the world.
You can drink it on its own, and it will take you a long while to get fed up with the taste. If you do ever get bored with it, just throw in some cocktail bitter or make yourself a good old Old Fashioned. Of course, we’ve heard some people say that using this whiskey for cocktails is a waste of a perfectly good product, but we see nothing wrong with using it to make the best Old Fashioned you’ve ever had.
If all that wasn’t enough to convince you that Rittenhouse bonded whiskey is a great product worth your attention, we have one final argument for you. You can buy two bottles of this bottled-in-bond whiskey for the price of one bottle of just about any other whiskey on this list, so why not give it a shot?
On the one hand, it’s undoubtedly a good thing that manufacturers can put a lot more care and effort into smaller batches of products, be it whiskey, original candy, or tomato juice. On the other hand, small batches mean a limited availability, and it’s a shame when you can no longer experience the taste of a particularly great whiskey because the small supply of it is simply gone. Fortunately, this is not much of a problem for Wilderness Trail because it seems like just about any batch of bonded whiskey they produce turns out extremely well.
This whiskey is made of corn, rye, and barley, which is a fairly common combination of grains for bonded whiskeys. Yet somehow, Wilderness Trail manages to pack a lot more flavor into their whiskey than many other manufacturers and distilleries we’ve reviewed. Aged in new barrels and bottled at 100 proof with no chill filtration, this whiskey is a great example of how underrated bottled-in-bond bourbons are. Of course, this is a good thing for you because the price for a bottle of this whiskey remains pleasantly low, something that we really can’t count on going on if bonded whiskey starts to get the appreciation it deserves.
There’s no way we could just omit the bottled-in-bond whiskey offering from Jack Daniel’s from our review. As it turned out, we can’t keep it off our top-picks list either. This bonded whiskey may not be something you instantly think of when someone mentions Jack Daniel’s, and it’s probably never going to become a top product for JD. Despite that, it still deserves your attention as one of the best bottled-in-bond whiskeys you can buy in 2019.
If you’re a fan of the Single Barrel series, you should definitely try the JD bonded Tennessee whiskey. If not, go get a bottle of it anyways; chances are, it is going to win you over with its rich taste palette. The flavor of the bonded JD instantly feels more concentrated and straightforward than the “standard” JD No. 7, and that’s no surprise given that the bonded variety contains more alcohol. Taking your time with a glass of JD bonded whiskey will allow you to discover the whole spectrum of flavors that contributed to the overall taste: caramel corn, menthol, clove, and of course, a slight hint of barrel char.
The only beef we could possibly have with this drink is that it’s only available for purchase in duty-free shops, which are mostly located in airports. This means that obtaining a bottle of this whiskey may not be easy, but in a way, hunting one down definitely contributes to the appreciation and enjoyment of the JD bonded Tennessee whiskey.
Those who are ready to drop a little more cash on a new bonded whiskey bottle need to turn their attention to the Rabble Rouser Rye from Catoctin Creek. Bottled at 100 proof, this whiskey is 100% rye mash, which obviously results in a taste that you won’t find in most other bonded whiskeys available today. This whiskey needs four years of aging before it can be bottled and sold, and it is the oldest Catoctin Creek distillate so far.
The company is run by a family that is focused on achieving maximum quality and discovering great flavors for their products, and it seems like they’re pretty good at doing just that. The flavor profile of the Rabble Rouser Rye is very unique, and while we understand that you may not like it in the end, it is definitely a good whiskey that’s worth trying just for the sake of knowing you’ve tasted it if nothing else.
A little cheaper than our previous pick but still quite pricey, this bonded whiskey is a good choice for spirits enthusiasts who know what they value in a good whiskey. Unlike the E.H. Taylor Small Batch Bourbon that we mentioned at the beginning of this review, this whiskey is distilled with a four-grain mash, something you don’t see very often.
Of course, the Four Grain bonded whiskey still has the immediately recognizable sweet taste that’s typical for bottled-in-bond whiskeys regardless of the distillation process and duration. However, this taste is supplemented by a whole plethora of minor flavor accents such as clove, vanilla, pepper, caramel, and a number of other spices. This may not seem like a combination that’d work well for a whiskey, but believe us, it does create a unique flavor that leaves a pleasant, lingering aftertaste. The E.H. Taylor Four Grain is a great whiskey that’s unfortunately quite difficult to obtain, so don’t miss an opportunity to grab a bottle!
Opened in 2014, New Riff had to wait for at least four years before they could reveal their bonded whiskey to the world. As it turned out, the final product was well worth the wait, as it is a unique blend of multiple flavors that are quite common for bottled-in-bond whiskeys. You can taste a hint of vanilla, some caramel corn, and just the right amount of skillfully mixed spices that are undeniably present in the mix but do not overwhelm you when you first taste the whiskey.
Since their new bonded whiskey enjoyed a great degree of success, New Riff was able to launch a wide distribution network for their long-awaited product. This means that you can get it relatively easily (if you know where to look, of course). Bear in mind that despite not being a small batch release, this whiskey is still bound to leave the shelves with astounding speed, so hurry up to get your own bottle of New Riff bonded whiskey before it becomes history and you have to wait for new baches.
Last but not least, we decided to include the Old Fitzgerald bonded bourbon on our list. Similarly to Fitzgerald, this whiskey is pretty old, having had as many as nine years to age and hone the diverse flavor palette that makes up its unique taste. Old Fitzgerald is a product of Heaven Hill Distillers, a large distilling company that is still family-owned and tradition-oriented to this day.
Respecting the traditions doesn’t stop Heaven Hill Distillers from experimenting to find the best tastes and flavor combinations, so they’re able to bring the amazing Old Fitzgerald bonded whiskey to their grateful fans twice a year. The biannual releases differ in tastes, but the difference is not too prominent, and both variants are very enjoyable. The grain mash used for this whiskey has no rye at all, which is without a doubt one of the factors that contribute to the distinctive taste of the Old Fitzgerald Bottled-In-Bond.