By Christina Sturgis
Kentucky is synonymous with bourbon. Therefore, it may be surprising that even one of Business Insider’s 13 best bourbons are distilled outside the Bluegrass State.
In fact, the Frankfort-based Kentucky Bourbon Trail, a trade organization for the distillers, states the iconic amber whiskey must be made from 51 percent corn, aged in charred new oak barrels and stored at no more than 125 proof. Kentucky’s limestone water is said to be essential to the flavor.
Business Insider gave first and second place to spirits by Jim Beam, although headquartered in Deerfield, Illinois, does the distilling in Clermont, Ky. No. 1 is Signature Craft Bourbon Whiskey 12 YO and No. 2 is Devil’s Cut Bourbon Whiskey 6 YO.
Third place goes to another Clermont product, Knob Creek Single Barrel Reserve 9 YO. A Frankfort-based company is praised for the fourth-place spirit, Blanton’s Original Single Barrel Bourbon Whiskey, manufactured at the Buffalo Trace Distillery.
The origins of the next three bourbons are less clear. Business Insider gave fifth place to Lidl UK Western Gold, a store brand distributed by the international Lidl discount supermarket stores. In sixth place is Hogs Bourbon 3 YO produced by Quality Spirits International, headquartered in Glasgow, Scotland.
Next is Pabst & Richarz Vertridge Ganbtl Western Gold Bourbon Whiskey from an international distiller headquartered in Minden, Germany. Next is 1792 Ridgemont Reserve Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey. The Bardstown, Kentucky-based company, takes its name from the year when Kentucky became a state.
Ninth is Blanton’s Single Barrel Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey produced at the Buffalo Trace Distillery in Frankfort, followed by another Jim Beam Black Bourbon Whiskey 8 YO.
Tenth is Hudson Baby distilled by Tuthilltown Spirits which doesn’t claim an old Kentucky home, instead proclaiming its headquarters in Gardiner in New York’s Hudson Valley. Other Empire State companies are getting into bourbon; Black Button Distilling is making small-pot bourbon in the city of Rochester.
On Business Insider’s list No. 12 is Lidl UK Western Gold Bourbon Whiskey 6 YO and No. 13 Eagle Rare Single Barrel Bourbon 10 YO Whiskey produced by the Buffalo Trace Distillery.