Our Favorite Whiskeys Aged in Red Wine Barrels

Whiskey is often aged in used wine barrels, but usually that wine is sherry. But red wine barrels are quickly becoming a new favorite to mature whiskey in, at least in part. Here are a few to check out!
Jun 15, 2019
  • 12
    Fruity & Sweet
    The Dalmore Cigar Malt Reserve is an aromatic, full-bodied expression intended to be paired with fine cigars. It is produced at the centuries old Dalmore Distillery located on the northern shores of the Firth of Cromarty, deep in the Scottish Highlands. Dalmore Cigar Malt Reserve is a beautiful marriage of single malt stocks aged in American white oak ex-bourbon casks, 30 year old Matusalem oloroso sherry butts and premier cru Cabernet Sauvignon wine barrique before being bottled at 88 proof.
  • 11
    Fruity & Rich
    This travel retail exclusive is the third entry in Glenfiddich's Age of Discovery line, celebrating famous routes and explorers. Here it's the journey of the HMS Beagle that is being saluted, and its most famous passenger, Charles Darwin. The single malt spends a portion of its time maturing in red wine barrels from South America.
  • 10
    Longrow Red is a limited edition released annually with a different red wine cask finish. Pinot Noir Cask Matured was first matured in ex-bourbon for 8 years and then spent its final 3 years aging in refill pinot noir barriques. Bottled at 53.1% ABV.
  • 9
    Fruity & Tart
    This bottling marks the second release in the Wine Geese series following their Château Léoville Barton bottling which was released in 2015. This single pot still whiskey matures initially in ex-bourbon and sherry casks. The whiskey finishes its maturation in former zinfandel wine barrels from Chateau Montelena located in Napa Valley, California. This whiskey is non chill-filtered and bottled at 46% ABV.
  • 8
    Fruity & Rich
    The Wayne Gretzky Estates Winery has recently drafted distilling to its lineup. The first release is this small batch Canadian whisky blended by Master Distiller, Joshua Beach. Aged rye, malted rye and corn whiskies were individually mashed, fermented and distilled, then brought in house to be finished in the wineries red wine casks. Availability limited to Canada and, as of February 2018, the Chicago, Illinois area and Missouri.
  • 7
    Full Bodied & Rich
    Bunnahabhain 2008 Mòine Bordeaux Red Wine Cask Matured is was fully matured in Bordeaux red wine casks rather than just being finished in them. The single malt was aged for nearly 10 years before bottling in 2018. Mòine is Scots Gaelic for "peated" so expect this to be smokier than the brand's standard offerings. Bottled at a cask strength of 58.1% ABV without added color or chill-filtration.
  • 6
    Not only is this the first single malt from the Cotswolds Distillery, it is the first one from the Cotswolds area in south central England. It is made from 100% floor-malted barley which also hails from the Cotswolds. The variety and farm it comes from is listed on the label. The whisky is distilled in a pair of pot-stills named Mary and Janis. It is aged just over three years in first-fill Kentucky ex-bourbon barrels and reconditioned American oak red wine barrels which have been shaved, toasted, and re-charred. No color added and un-chillfiltered. Bottled at 46% ABV.
  • 5
    Rich & Full Bodied
    Released as part of Bowmore's Vintner's Trilogy, this 26 year-old single malt aged in Bowmore's No. 1 Vaults in two types of barrels. For the first 13 years, it matured in ex-bourbon barrels. The whisky then transferred to former wine barriques for the last 13 years. Bottled at a cask-strength of 48.7% ABV, it is available beginning October 2017.
  • 4
    Vanilla & Sweet
    This limited edition release is made from Kentucky straight bourbon ranging from 4-12 years of age. Included in the bottling is Limestone Branch Distillery's own distillate made with heirloom white corn. The bourbon initially ages in new, charred oak barrels and is then transferred to char #3 wine casks for finishing. Bottled at 101 proof, there were 12,000 bottles produced. Available beginning October 2018.
  • 3
    Vanilla & Rich
    Starward Nova is a single malt made from 100% Australian malted barley. It fully matures in uncharred wine barrels which held Australian wines such as shiraz, cabernet sauvignon, and pinot noir. As of May 2019, this product is now available in the US.
  • 2
    Rich & Full Bodied
    This Phifer Pavitt Reserve Bourbon is the first release for Bardstown Bourbon Company (BBCo) under the brand's Collaborative Series. They partnered with Napa Valley's Phifer Pavitt Winery who supplied the cabernet sauvignon wine barrels for the bourbon to finish its aging in. BBCo took 9 year-old Tennessee straight bourbon and aged the whiskey in these French oak wine barrels for 19 months further. This limited edition release is available spring 2019.
  • 1
    Jefferson's Reserve Pritchard Hill Cabernet Cask Finish Bourbon is aged initially in new American oak barrels. It then finishes its maturation in French oak casks from Napa Valley's Chappellet Winery previously used its renowned cabernet sauvignon wine. The bourbon is bottled at 45.1% ABV.