Whiskeys That Will Make Great Gifts

Shopping for the perfect gift for your friends, family, or boss this year? Try picking up one of these highly rated but lesser known whiskeys! You'll look like a pro.
Dec 11, 2016
  • 10
    Sweet & Rich
    anCnoc whiskies (pronounced "a-nock") are produced at the Knockdhu Distillery, founded by John Morrison in 1892, at the Knock estate in Aberdeenshire. This 18 year old whisky is aged in a combination of ex-sherry and ex-bourbon oak casks. It is un-chill filtered with no additional coloring, so may get cloudy with water or if kept in cold temperatures.
  • 9
    Sweet & Fruity
    The Whistler Calvados Cask Finish is a triple-distilled blended whiskey which features 35% single malt and 65% grain whiskeys. Each style is individually matured in ex-bourbon barrels for 4 years. Then the whiskeys are married and finished for 15 months in French oak casks which held 10 year-old Calvados from Chateau du Breuil. Bottled without chill-filtration or added caramel at 43% ABV.
  • 8
    Kilbeggan Small Batch Rye is a limited edition Irish whiskey available beginning mid-November 2018. It is made from a mash bill of malted and unmalted barley and around 30% rye. Since Single Pot Still whiskeys cannot have more than 5% of any grain other than barley, it doesn't qualify as such technically. It is double distilled in copper pot stills, one of which was made in the early 1800s and is the oldest working pot still in the world. Rye was used by Irish distillers in the late 1800s, but it disappeared around the time of Prohibition and the Irish War of Independence. It is the first Kilbeggan whiskey to be 100% distilled and matured at the Kilbeggan Distillery since it was restored in 2010.
  • 7
    Master blender Dr. Don Livermore has a doctorate in distilling. To simplify his dissertation, he studied how wood interacted with different spirits to draw out flavors. His hard work produced a surplus of barrels that have been aging whisky for the past 12 years. Dissertation is a blend of 87% rye whisky and 13% corn whisky bottled at 46.1% alcohol, the molecular weight of ethanol. Note: Not available in the US.
  • 6
    Vanilla & Rich
    Arranta Casks is a U.S.-exclusive from Speyburn which hit the shelves in August 2015 as a limited release. "Arranta" translates to bold or daring in Scottish Gaelic, and to match that spirit, Speyburn utilized 100% first-fill ex-bourbon casks for aging, all of which were air-dried, and hand-selected for the expression by distillery manager Robert Anderson.
  • 5
    Rich & Full Bodied
    To make this whiskey, Taconic empties barrels that previously aged bourbon made at their distillery. They then get sent to Catskill Mountain Sugarhouse where the barrels are filled with maple syrup. After a few months of aging, the syrup is bottled. The casks are then refilled with bourbon for another few months.
  • 4
    Catskill Provisions New York Honey Whiskey is an 80-proof rye infused with local honey from the Catskill Mountains. The rye whiskey is distilled from a mash bill of 80% rye and 20% barley at Finger Lakes Distilling (contract distilled) in upstate New York.
  • 3
    Full Bodied & Rich
    Campbeltown was once considered the "whisky making capitol" of Scotland with 28 distilleries. Of those 28, only 3, including Glen Scotia remain. Though they no longer malt their own barley, they source it to very specific details, using longer fermentation and vatting methods than in the old days. Released in 2015 as part of the brand's relaunch, this Scotch was matured for 15 years in ex-bourbon barrels before bottling.
  • 2
    Sweet & Spicy
    Located in Virginia, A. Smith Bowman is one of the few historic, family distilleries that was able to pick up again right after Prohibition. This limited edition release was aged for periods of time in separate barrels and warehouse locations, to benefit from the effect of different degrees of air quality around the casks. It is non chill filtered to retain natural flavors.
  • 1
    Rich & Fruity
    This whisky is a tribute to J.P. Wiser and a testament to the quality of Canadian whisky that Wiser established as a style many years ago. Former Master Blender David Doyle blended this Canadian gem with then Wiser apprentice Don Livermore. A rye-grain heavy mash is distilled in traditional copper pot-stills then aged in toasted new white oak barrels. A toasted oak, rather than charred oak, helps mellow the distillate through the aging cycle.