Bourbon Heritage Month is built on 2 congressional declarations: in 1964, Congress declared bourbon America’s Native Spirit, then in 2007, Congress named September National Bourbon Heritage Month.
Last year, I talked you though 6 of the most popular brands of bourbon. This year, I grabbed some less familiar bourbon brands and tasted them throughout September. Remember that to be legally called bourbon, a spirit must be:
- Distilled from a grain mash that’s at least 51% corn.
- Aged in new, charred, oak barrels for a period of time (not specified).
- Distilled and aged in the United States.
Here were the sippers that I enjoyed in September 2013 for Bourbon Heritage Month:
Peach Street Colorado ($66): Aged 9 years and bottled at 92 proof. This is an amazing bourbon – complex, strong, spicy, and a tad sweet. If you pressed me and the mood was right, I might tell you that this is the best bourbon I’ve ever had. I’ve become a big fan of Colorado whiskey.
Col. E. H. Taylor Small Batch ($45):Aged 7 years and bottled at 100 proof. A great, balanced bourbon with a bunch of history distilled in the bottle. There’s a good, sweet, and almost fruity, flavor to this bourbon.
McAfee’s Benchmark No. 8 ($12): No age statement, bottled at 80 proof. You will discover online that many claim this as the best bourbon you can buy for $12. I made a Manhattan with it, and it is a very good bourbon, though compared to pricier offerings, McAfee’s tastes a little bit young and hot.