Top Shelf Whiskey Picks From The Distiller Community

Check out the Distiller community's favorite top shelf whiskies from last week.
Apr 06, 2020
  • 10
    10 Hibiki 21 Year
    99
    Fruity & Sweet
    Hibiki is the blended whisky brand produced by Suntory. Combining their two single malt whiskies, Hakushu and Yamazaki, with their corn-based grain whisky, Chita, they create something completely their own. Utilizing a mix of American, European, and Japanese wood this aged a minimum of 21 years and bottled at 86 proof. This is being slowly released to a couple of US major markets at the end of 2014 and then further expanding to the rest of the country for 2015 along with their 17 year-old version.
  • 9
    9 Woodford Reserve Double Oaked
    92
    Sweet & Rich
    Woodford Reserve is known for aging their bourbon in heavily charred oak barrels, which give the whiskey a distinctive, deep, rich flavor and feel. Double Oaked is the same bourbon, given a second maturation, or finish, in barrels that have been toasted twice as long, but charred much more lightly than the other casks, for an additional 9 months. A package redesign was introduced in late 2016, featuring a shorter and wider bottle. It is still bottled at 45.2% ABV.
  • 8
    8 W.L. Weller Antique 107
    92
    Full Bodied & Oily
    The second in the Weller line, the Weller Antique bottled, aged for 7 years and bottled at 107, is for the bourbon drinker looking for an affordable wheated bourbon with a bit more kick to it. The higher proof holds up nicely to both cocktails or rocks while still maintaining its distinct wheated properties.
  • 7
    7 Ardbeg Uigeadail
    93
    Fruity & Rich
    First launched in 2003, Ardbeg Uigeadail [Oog-a-dal] is a marriage of some young and some very old oloroso sherry aged single malt along with Ardbeg aged in ex-bourbon barrels. The name Uigeadail means "a dark, mysterious place." Fun to say and even more fun to drink. It is also the name of the loch from which Ardbeg gets its water. Bottled at cask strength with no age statement.
  • 6
    6 Eagle Rare 10 Year Bourbon
    91
    Sweet & Full Bodied
    Eagle Rare 10 Year Bourbon is one of the flagship products of the Buffalo Trace collection of whiskeys. It is made from 10 year old bourbon aged at the Kentucky distillery. The barrels are hand selected for quality and consistency before bottling.
  • 5
    5 Four Roses Small Batch Select Bourbon
    89
    Vanilla & Rich
    Four Roses Small Batch Select Bourbon is a non-chillfiltered bourbon using a recipe selected by master distiller Brent Elliott. Four Roses has 10 bourbon recipes available to craft its bourbon offerings which are made from two different mash bills and five different yeast strains. Small Batch Select is made from six of the ten: OBSV, OBSK, OBSF, OESV, OESK, OESF. Each bourbon in the small batch selection will be six or seven years old. This is the first new brand extension for the brand in 12 years. It joins the other permanent releases of Four Roses Bourbon, Small Batch, and Single Barrel bottlings. Available as of spring 2019 in Kentucky, Texas, California, New York, and Georgia with other locations to follow in the future.
  • 4
    4 George T. Stagg Bourbon (Fall 2019)
    98
    Spicy & Tart
    George T. Stagg Bourbon (Fall 2019) is an uncut, unfiltered Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey and is one of the five bottlings in the Buffalo Trace Antique Collection released each fall. Due to many of the barrels having matured on the lower levels of the warehouses, this year's edition is the lowest proof release of Stagg to date. However, it is still a healthy 116.9 proof.
  • 3
    3 Redbreast 12 Year
    90
    Fruity & Sweet
    Redbreast is made in the classic Irish Single Pot Still style. This means it is produced using a mash bill consisting of both malted and unmalted barley which is triple distilled in copper pot stills. The 12 year is aged in ex-bourbon and European oak ex-oloroso sherry.
  • 2
    2 Lagavulin 16 Year
    92
    Full Bodied & Peaty
    Though not officially (read, legally) established until 1816, there are records that date distillation here going back to 1742. Malted barley produced just a hop, skip, and a jump away at neighboring Port Ellen is utilized. Everything is long at this distillery: fermentation, distillation, and maturation. Good things do indeed come to those that wait. Bottled at 43% ABV after 16 years in oak barrels.
  • 1
    1 Blanton's Original Single Barrel
    89
    Rich & Oily
    The first mass-produced single-barrel bourbon, bottled by Master Distiller Elmer T Lee in 1984, gets its name from Colonel Albert Blanton. Colonel Blanton spent more than 55 years producing, studying and upholding whiskey traditions; holding almost every job imaginable at what is now the Buffalo Trace Distillery. Insider's note: Save the stoppers. They spell out Blanton's and depict eight different moments from the beginning to end of a horse race.