Ranked: Top 100 American whiskeys of 2021

Bourbon

January 6, 2022

This year’s winner of my American Whiskey of the Year had some stiff competition for 2021. But in the end, it’s what I wanted to keep sipping on. View criteria for this year’s rankings.

Balcones Wheated, Bourbon, 92 Proof, $62.99
Finishing at 91 and based in Idaho, Grand Teton Corn Whiskey is from 100-percent Idaho Corn and is proofed with mountain water. In a category that needs more leaders, this corn whiskey is an example of the finest in the spirit. It’s 100 proof and around $80.

As with any list, the bottom 10 are as important as the 10 finalists. Each one of these made my list for a reason, and I am extremely excited about the unique offerings here, such as the Grand Teton Corn Whiskey.

Note: This has been updated with brand corrections, proofs and price points. All prices are based on the SRP.

100. Balcones Wheated Bourbon, 92 proof, $62.99
99. Banner Wheat Whiskey, 92 proof, $34.99
98. Fort Hamilton Double Barrel Bourbon. 92, $39.99
97. Sagamore Spirit Bottled in Bond Rye, 100 Proof, $40-$60
96. Legends Single Barrel, 122 proof, $72.99
95. Whiskey Acres Maple Finish, 118.9 proof, $47.99
94. Elijah Craig B521, 118.2 proof, $65
93. Buzzard’s Roost Toasted, 105 proof, $80
92. Cutwater Devil’s Share, 92 proof, $134.99
91. Grand Teton Corn Whiskey, 100 proof, $80
90. Wilderness Trail Bottled in Bond 2021, 100 proof, $79.99
89. Kentucky Peerless Small Batch, 109.3 proof, $69.99
88. Davies Double Barrel, 96 proof, $50
87. Ironroot Harbinger, 115 proof, $34.99
86. Pinhook Bourbon War, 107 proof, $65
85. Old Elk Sour Mash Reserve, 105 proof, $80.99
84. Boone County Wheated, 120.4 proof, $100
83. Kings Family Distillery Tennessee Bourbon, 127.4 proof, $99
82. Woodinville PX Sherry Finish, 95 proof, $39.99
81. St. Augustine Port Finish, 102 proof, $69.99
80. 291 E Colorado Whiskey Batch 8, 130.9 proof, $100
79. Virginia Distillery Courage & Conviction, 92 proof, $74.99
78. Elijah Craig C921, 120.2 proof, $65
77. Spirits of French Lick William Dalton, 104.1 proof, $100
76. Booker’s 2021-04, 124.4 proof, $89.99
Finishing at No. 74, Bradshaw Bourbon is distilled and aged at the Green River Distillery in Owensboro. This is the first time a product from this distillery has caught my attention at this level, and I’ve tasted barrel samples from here that make me think Green River is a distillery of the future. Bradshaw is 103.8 proof and around $40.

75. Doc Swinson’s Alter Ego, 95.8 proof, $59.99
74. Bradshaw Bourbon Batch 4, 103.8 proof, $42.99
73. Kings County Distillery Empire Rye, 102 proof, $99
72. Spirit Works Distillery Straight Rye Whiskey, 90 proof, $50
71. Nelson’s Green Brier Tennessee Whiskey, 91 proof, $30
70. Ironroot Hubris, 117.8 proof, $52.99
69. Lone Elm Wheat Whiskey, 120 proof, $44.99
68. Whiskey Acres Blue Popcorn bourbon, 92 proof, $30
67. Lee W. Sinclair 4 Grain Bourbon – Bottled in Bond, 100 proof, $65
66. Horse Soldier Premium Spring 2021, 87 proof, $49.99
65. Milam & Greene Port Finish Rye. 94 proof, $45.99
64. Old Line Single Malt, Madera finish, 100 proof, $65
63. Nashville Barrel Company Tennessee Cask, 123.7 proof, $75
62. Bardstown Bourbon Company Fusion No. 5, 94.9 proof, $60
61. Four Gate Ruby Rye Batch 11, 113.4 proof, $185
60. New Riff Red Turkey Wheated, 100 proof, $50
59. Barrell Batch 28, 108.86 proof, $89
58. Larceny C921, 122.6 proof, $50
57. Jefferson’s Reserve Pritchard Hill Cabernet Cask Finish, 90.2 proof, $59.99
56. O.H Ingram River Aged Flagship, 100 proof, $100
55. Dad’s Hat Bottled in Bond, 100 proof, $70
54. Augusta Buckner 13 Year, 123.2 proof, $200
53. Westland Peat Week, 120.8, $100
52. Westward Cask Strength Single Malt, 125 proof, $100
51. Blue Run Kentucky Straight High Rye Bourbon, 111 proof, $90
50. Liberty Pole Spirits Peated Rye Whiskey, 109.6 proof, $64
49. Four Gate Bluegrass Trilogy III, 124.7 proof, $199
48. Hard Truth Sweet Mash Rye Batch 1, 115.2 proof, $69.95
47. Penelope 4 Grain Cask Strength, 116.6 proof, $69.95
46. Smooth Ambler Old Scout 5 Year Old Bourbon, 118 proof, $60
45. Blood Oath Pact 7, 98.6 proof, $100
44. Rabbit Hole Founder’s Collection Raceking, 109.2 proof, $295
43. Kings County Cask Strength, 123.7 proof, $74.99
42. Kentucky Senator 15 Year Old, 107 proof, $200
41. Chattanooga Whiskey Bottled in Bond Bourbon, 100 proof, $49.99
40. Sweetens Cove Batch 2, 101.4 proof, $200
39. Blackened Cask Strength Batch 106, 110.7 proof, $54.99
38. High Plains Rye, 97 proof, $54.95

Coming in at No. 37, Dettling’s released several expressions that have been delicious. While their 72-month Alabama made my list, this May release was also close to making the list.


37. Dettling 72 Month, 110.2 proof, $70
36. Uncle Nearest Master’s Blend, 115 proof, $149.99
35. Huber’s Starlight Distillery Single Barrel, 110.8 proof, $50
34. Barrell Batch 27, 115.7 proof, $119
33. Four Roses Limited Edition Small Batch, 114.2 proof, $150
32. Smoke Wagon Uncut Batch 25, 116 proof, $200
31. Three Chamber’s Rye, Leopold Brothers, 100 proof, $250
30. Yellowstone, Amarone Finish, 101 proof, $`100
29. Jefferson’s Rye, Cognac Finish, 94 proof, $64.99
28. A. Smith Bowman Cask Strength, 141.1 proof, $100
27. Michter’s 10 Year Rye, 92.8 proof, $150
26. Maker’s Mark FAE-2, 109.1 proof, $60
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The Top 25

25. Garrison Brothers Laguna Madre, 101 proof, $300
24. Barrell Batch 30, 117.32 proof, $89
23. Dickel / Leopold Brothers Three Chamber Collab, 100 proof, $110
22. Stagg Jr. Batch 16, 130.9 proof, $50
21. William LaRue Weller, 125.3 proof, $100
20. Parker’s Wheat Whiskey, 122 proof, $140
19. Thomas Handy Rye, 129.5 proof, $99
18. Michter’s 10 Year Bourbon, 94.4 proof, $139.99
17. Sazerac 18 Year Old, 90 proof, $100
16. Blue Note 17 Year Old, 96.6 proof, $149.99
15. New Riff Malted Rye, 100 proof, $60
14. Old Fitzgerald 8 Year Spring, 100 proof, $110
13. Old Fitzgerald 11 Year Fall, 100 proof, $110
12. Booker’s 2021-03, 2021-03, 125.5 proof, $110
11. Wild Turkey Master’s Keep One, 101 proof, $175
10. Jack Daniel’s 10 Year, 97 proof, $70
9. Bardstown Bourbon Company Triple Stave, 109 proof, $200
8. Kuiper Belt 8 Year Kentucky Bourbon, 90 proof, $100
7. Angel’s Envy Madera Finish, 100 proof, $550
6. Old Forester Birthday Bourbon, 104 proof, $130
5. Remus Repeal V, 100 proof, $90
4. Eagle Rare 17 Year, 101 proof, $149.99
3. Little Book Chapter 5, 116.8 proof, $125
2. Barrell Seagrass Rye, 119.84 proof, $90
1. Russell’s 13 year, 114.8 proof, $70

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