The holidays are approaching fast. Whether you need to bring a bottle to a gathering, gift one or just drink it, we give you the top 5 bourbons for this winter. We sampled each, and we give a quick description. Enjoy alone or with friends. But these are sure to please.
1. Woodford Double Double Oaked
Woodford Reserve adds its matured Double Oaked Kentucky straight bourbon to lightly charred new oak barrels for an additional year. The double-wood finish doesn’t add any new flavors, but rather enhances its sweet, aromatic notes and gives it a spicier characteristic. You get rich maple syrup, butterscotch, marshmallow, and hickory smoke on the nose with warming clove, chai tea, cherry, cranberry, and blackberry jam on the tongue.
2. Four Roses Small Batch Reserve
With a blend of bourbons ranging from 12 to 19 years of age, Four Roses Small Batch Reserve edges right up to the cliff of deep, resiny wood flavors, but pulls it back with controlled, youthful notes of fruit and vanilla cream. Master Distiller Brent Elliott really outdid himself.
3. Thomas S. Moore Cabernet Cask
A product of the Barton 1792 distillery, the Thomas S. Moore lineup of whiskies are all cask-finished. The bourbon is aged in oak barrels for several years, then placed in cabernet sauvignon barrels for a few more. The wine barrel aging helps the spirit acquire notes of dark fruit that pair well with the rich caramel and vanilla flavors typical of bourbon.
4. Angel’s Envy Cask Strength
A legendary expression, Angel’s Envy Cask Strength has earned numerous accolades, and each year’s release has its own unique variations. It’s finished in port wine barrels for intense flavor. Even though it’s 120 proof, it’s a surprisingly easy sipper, with strong notes of cherries on the nose and palate along with salted chocolate and orange peel.
5. Old Forester 1910
Part of the Old Forester Whiskey Row series, Old Fine Whisky double barrels ready-to-bottle Old Forester a second time in new barrels. They scorched the barrels to the high heavens. The process lends plenty of toasty characteristics. The typical sweetness of burnt sugar and vanilla Old Forester is known for is elevated by coffee and dark chocolate notes, particularly on the finish. It’s a stellar dessert whiskey—a great way to cap off a big meal.