There’s nothing like a great bourbon — whether it’s neat, on the rocks, in a Manhattan, or as part of a mixed drink. I love bourbon while watching football on a Sunday afternoon (well, that’s an excuse — I love it anytime). If you like bourbon, but don’t know quite what to get, here’s a list of a half-dozen, by price, that will give you a nice starter set. Prices vary by states, of course, so these are approximations. I’m not listing the hard-to-find allocated bourbons here (Pappy, Stagg, etc), just the good stuff that should be in a ready supply.
$10 or under: Benchmark. A nice, light, smooth bourbon great for multiple uses.
Under $20: Old Forester Classic 86 proof. Deep, rich, higher in rye, light burn.
Under $30: 1792. Formerly, 1792 Ridgemont Reserve, this eight-year small batch has a marvelous, thick, maple flavor.
Under $40: Wild Turkey Rare Breed. My overall favorite. This barrel-proof bourbon is surprisingly smooth and thick with hints of orange.
Under $50: EH Taylor. Caramel and butterscotch highlight a smooth drink.
Under $60: Booker’s. Another barrel-proof bourbon, this thick, maple/vanilla drink is best sipped over ice.