The year 2021 has been a productive year for the Bourbon industry. There have been many Bourbons that I liked quite a bit. Some of them came from the established Kentucky distilleries, but many of them have been made by artisan distilleries. I am limiting this list to new Bourbons I have tasted in the past year. I am listing them in alphabetical order, not by preference. I hope you enjoy this list and have a chance to get a bottle or two from this list.
Buzzard’s Roost: Not a distillery yet, but a rectifier company that is bottling excellent whiskey. They recently bottled a Bourbon that has no age statement, so it is at least four years old and bottled at barrel strength. A very good drink of whiskey.
Heaven Hill Distillery: Five Brothers and Square Six are two new Bourbons released this past year. The Square Six is made from Bourbon made at the Evan Williams Bourbon Experience and the Five Brothers is so named as to honor Heaven Hill’s founding fathers. Both are very good Bourbons.
Jeptha Creed Distillery: This distillery has released a bonded Bourbon from their traditional mash bill made with corn, rye and malt. It is a very good Bourbon and makes me impatient for them to release their wheated mash bill. I have tasted the latter mash bill as a two year old and was impressed then. They are waiting to release the wheated Bourbon when it is six years old. A lot of good things are going on at this distillery.
Kentucky Artisan Distillery: Their Bonded Whiskey Row Bourbon is very good and easily found in Louisville liquor stores at a reasonable price. All I can say is “WOW! What a good Bourbon”.
Maker’s Mark Distillery: Makers Mark has released several bottles in 2021 that I really enjoyed. My favorites were the DNA Project bottles that are all aged eight years but had different barrel entry proofs. This is a limited release project, but well worth getting them at the distillery when they have them in the gift shop. They also released the FAE 1 and FAE 2 finished Bourbon and the Lee Initiative Community bottles that are also limited releases, but well worth buying if you can find them.
W.H. McBrayer: Another product from a rectifier. The McBrayer family had Bourbon contract distilled at Wilderness Trail using Bloody Butcher corn and a low barrel entry proof. This is an excellent four year old whiskey, but hard to find. It sold out online and never made it to the shelves.
Milam and Greene Distillery: This Texas distillery has been sourcing whiskey to sell while they distill and age their own product. Heather Greene has an excellent palate and has bottled some excellent whiskey. I look forward to having some of their own distillation. I am sure it will be superb.
Spirits of French Lick Distillery: Alan Bishop loves to play with mash bills and makes excellent whiskey. His Lee Sinclair, William Dalton and Morning Glory are three Bourbons I tasted this year that I have recommended to several people.
Widow Jane Distillery: I have several bottles of Widow Jane Bourbons that I really like. These are all sourced Bourbons as Lisa Wicker distills and ages their own Bourbon, but they are still excellent products. Lisa is a Master Blender as well as a Master Distiller. Let me recommend The Vaults and Lucky Thirteen. Excellent whiskeys, so buy them while you can.
I hope you enjoyed this list of Bourbons from the year 2021. Pick up a bottle or two while you can and I am sure you will love them.
Photos Courtesy of Rosemary Miller