Contrary to what some may think, whiskey is not just a cold weather beverage. All you need to do is look to some of the most refreshing cocktails out there because they contain none other than whiskey. To help you choose the best, we picked five whiskey expressions that are perfect for summer drinking.
The whiskey is aged at sea, meaning barrels are placed aboard a ship that travels the world—each voyage of Jefferson’s Ocean typically crosses the equator four times and visits five continents. As temperature fluxuations and rough seas help to age the bourbon, it takes on deep caramelly notes from the barrels, giving it a tropical-esque flavor that reminds us of dark rum. The briny sea air imparts savory notes to create a bourbon that is so lip-smackingly good, it’s difficult to keep a bottle around for long.
Maker’s Mark Cask Strength is a robust welcome to warm weather. It’s bottled anywhere from 108-114 proof, depending on the batch, and tastes surprisingly smooth when sipped neat. This is the kind of bourbon we would sip in cocktails at a daytime barbecue before pouring a neat dram around the fire pit after dark.
The American whiskey is a blend of Graton Distilling’s house rye whiskey and a mix of four-, five- and 11-year-old bourbons that were aged in high-char casks. Stone fruits, herbs and vanilla, It’s light on the palate with flavors of mixed nuts, black and white pepper, coffee and sage.
Delicious golden liquid is one of our favorite Irish whiskeys, and its smooth, light body makes it perfect for summer sipping. It’s casked in American oak bourbon barrels for a minimum of eight years, which makes this bottling especially good for the price.
Evan Williams Green Label Straight Kentucky Bourbon ($12 for 1L)
Bartenders keep this ultra-affordable bottle around. The reliable bourbon from Evan Williams is slightly sweet, Vanilla, oak and barley are prominent, along with a cereal-like, honeyed flavor that will keep you coming back for more. Green Label is always good for straight sipping, cocktail making and celebratory shot taking.