I’ve always been a little suspicious of American whiskies, this is perhaps due to the fact that my first encounters with them centred around Jim Beam and Jack Daniels. On retrospect I’m fairly sure that the Americans export both of these largely as a joke on the rest of the world, in much the same way that the Australians export Fosters.
There are many, smaller distilleries in the US that produce some genuinely fantastic spirits and Basil Hayden’s is my current drink of choice. It dates back to dates back to 1796 when master distiller Basil Hayden Snr created a new type of bourbon by doubling the amount of rye in the blend. After 8 years of ageing this produces a balanced, smokey bourbon that can be drunk either neat or over ice.
Check out Basil Hayden’s here via Small Batch.