Noteworthy High-End Bourbons:
Everyone wants to have a signature drink, an "old reliable" they can count on to be there for them and the end of a hard day's work. Many bourbons scratch just such an itch. One of my current favorites is the Four Roses Yellow Label. Four Roses Yellow Label is one of the more versatile bourbons, in that it can pair nicely with almost any meal. Undertones of oak and the barrels used for soaking dominate the first taste, as it slowly smooths into a refreshingly friendly warmth of fruits, cherries, and honeysuckle.
Four Roses Yellow Label is often had in both cocktail form and on ice. To get the most mileage per glass, however, so to speak, it is recommended to drink it straight. Four Roses Yellow Label comes in at 104 proof (or 52% alcohol by volume).
W.L. Weller: 12-Year-Old Kentucky Bourbon
Now, you may look at the price of a bottle of aged W.L. Weller and scoff (each 750mL bottle will cost a whopping $470), but the taste is absolutely worth the cost. W.L. Weller created the first-ever bourbon to be derived from wheat as a secondary grain rather than rye. This gave it a slightly bitter and less sweet taste when compared to gentler bourbons, but W.L. Weller's prestige is not unearned. The bourbon is still made using the same recipe as an honor to one of the original "royals of bourbon": W.L. Weller. Weller's bourbon comes in two options: 12 years or 90 proof, and antique, which is 107 proof (or 45% and 53.5% alcohol by volume respectively).
The bottom line is that this is one of the smoothest bourbons ever to be on the market, and the company's long and storied history (that continues into the future I might add) only adds to the overall mystique and prestige of their products.
Whiskeys of Note
The word "whiskey" is derived from the Gaelic word "uisge", which roughly translates to mean "water". Given how ubiquitous whiskey has become in the world, and particularly in the West, I think this is a very fitting name, especially when you consider all the life-giving properties of our beloved beverage of choice.
Maker's Mark stands to be one of the more common high-end whiskeys readily available for wide distribution. Each bottle is coated with a wax seal to prevent tampering or wear and tear, which also adds an aura of mystique and intrigue to the bottle. It makes it feel as though you have been gifted some legendary bottle of alcohol by some diplomat or some such, but that's only because of the sheer quality of the beverage.
Maker's Mark offers tinges of caramel and vanilla, followed by a nice, but not overpowering, inner warmth. They had once used the tagline, "it tastes expensive because it is", though that isn't so much the case anymore. Bottles of Maker's Mark can be obtained via their website for as little as $44.
15-Year-old Straight Bourbon Whiskey from I.W. Harper
Bringing 86 proof (or 43% alcohol by volume) bottled by Bernheim Distillery, I.W. Harper's Whiskey is back by popular demand. Scents of cinnamon, chocolate announce the coming of the much welcome burn of the whiskey as it goes down smoothly. I.W. Harper's whiskey is as good as ever now that they have returned from their hiatus, and the chance to taste it shouldn't be passed up.
Though fairly expensive at $237.99 per 750mL decanter, this historic and storied whiskey is sure to bring with it all the gravitas and experience you would expect from such a beverage. The images conjured by the smoky hues and pleasantly smoldering after effects remind one of the Appalachian distilleries, the Volstead Act, and American Exceptionalism all at once. In other words, it's one a heck of a whiskey.
Whiskey, bourbon, and their histories are as much a part of the general history and culture of the Western world as anything else, and as such, each drink tells a different tale. Some conjure images of v8 Fords racing away from prohibitionists. Others call to mind peaceful evenings spent on a lake's edge, and others still make one thing of the nostalgic aromas of days past. Choosing a drink to match one's own personality and style is as important as the flavor.
Whatever your choice may be, remember to drink responsibly and to always make as informed a choice as possible whenever choosing an alcoholic beverage, or anything else for that matter.
This article has not been paid for by any advertiser. Living.Guide does not endorse any products or treatments discussed herein. This content is intended for informational and entertainment purposes only and is not a substitute for professional advice or analysis.