And that’s not a knock on Tennessee Whiskey at all. While the state’s northern neighbor, Kentucky, gets all the love for its legendary bourbon, Tennessee Whiskey is just as good. In case you’re wondering, Tennessee Whiskey is a thing, like Kentucky Bourbon is. In fact, Tennessee Whiskey is essentially the same thing as Bourbon, but with an additional step; after being distilled, Tennessee Whiskey is filtered through sugar maple charcoal in what is known as the Lincoln Country Process, which is what gives it the distinctive flavor and title of Tennessee Whiskey. (You can learn more about Tennessee Whiskey, and what sets it apart from Bourbon, here).
So what’s our favorite Tennessee Whiskey? That honor goes to George Dickel No. 8 Tennessee Whisky. George A. Dickel and Co. Distillery is a relative legend when it comes to Tennessee Whiskey. Located in Tullahoma, Tennessee, about halfway between Chattanooga and Nashville, they’ve been distilling fine spirits since George A. Dickel himself started the distillery more than 100 years.
No. 8 is an 80-proof, sour mash of 84% corn, 8% rye, 8% malted barley. It’s actually not aged for 8 years, but for a good 4-6 years.The flavor is bold, with serious spice. That’s what George Dickel is known for. There are aromas of light caramel and wood, finished off with hints of maple and buttered corn. But overall, it’s got good balance, medium body and is to drink.
How is it best enjoyed? Straight up. That’s how you get the real experience of Tennessee Whiskey. And in the $40 a bottle range, it’s perfectly priced. That’s another reason why it’s our personal pick for the best Tennessee Whiskey that won’t break the bank. And we’re not the only ones who think so: No.8 won the 2010 Gold Medal and 2011 Silver Medal at the San Francisco World Spirits Competition.
Stock up to stay warm this winter.