Bourbon. The Wild Mustang of the Whiskey World

It is a well-rounded argument that the Scottish has the market sewn up as far as making the best product on the planet; however, there are a few studs in other stables worth a mention.

Bourbon History

Bourbon has long been associated with Kentucky and for good reason as it is the state where this craft was first developed.

Elijah Craig, a Baptist minister in the late 18th century in Georgetown Kentucky, unveiled to farmers and townsfolk alike the first Bourbon whiskey. It is said that even the father of the great Abraham Lincoln got into the action.

In 1758 this new whiskey was dubbed Bourbon after the county of Old Bourbon.

As European settlers brought their trade secrets with them to North America Bourbon production started to boom. By 1791 the government elected to impose a tax on whiskey and whiskey sales which ultimately sparked the whiskey rebellion of Pennsylvania.

All this did not sit well with distillers who subsequently relocated to the Kentucky Mountains in the hope to avoid taxation.

Today 80% of all Bourbon is still distilled in the state of Kentucky.

Through some of the river ports in Kentucky, the whiskies were shipped down the Ohio River to New Orleans.

Bourbon regulations

Although Bourbon is less restricted than Scotch, there are some regulations in place today. State regulation on Bourbon distilling requires the brew to be made from 51% corn; however barley wheat and rye may be used for blending purposes. It must be between 80-160% proof.

The corn lends a distinct soft texture and sweet taste to bourbon. After it is distilled in a continual still, it is matured in oak casks for a minimum of no less than two years.