Mellow Corn is NOT Bourbon … it’s a 100-proof bottle of 81% corny rocket fuel packaged like a 1950’s diner that’ll make you re-think what it means to be American Whiskey.
is the largest independent, family-owned distillery company in the United States producing more the 50
brands of spirits and several variations therein. They were founded in 1935
, at the height of the Great Depression (reason enough to need a shot of Whiskey) immediately after the repeal of Prohibition.
They are based in Bardstown, Kentucky
, so you might bet that Bourbon is a big part of what they do, and you would be right. Heaven Hill is currently the second largest holder of aging Bourbon Whiskey stock in the world with an inventory of over 1 million barrels
But these days they do a lot more than Bourbon and have a wide range of products including Gins, Vodkas, and a load of specialty beverages.
Mellow Corn Whiskey is NOT Bourbon. In order to be called Bourbon, a Whiskey has to have at least 51% Corn in the mash. But before there was Bourbon, there was Corn Whiskey, which requires at least 81% corn in the mash, and that is what Mellow Corn is: Kentucky Straight Corn Whiskey. And this interestingly yellow Whiskey is aged for four years in ex-Bourbon barrels. If you take the time and incur the expense of aging for four years in barrels that those Scotts would gladly pay you a handsome price for, you ain’t messing around!
Mellow Corn is not a newcomer either. Heaven Hill has been making it since 1945, but it has lived its corny little life in obscurity until recently as craft bartenders and hipsters all over the country have been on the lookout for new things to mix with and new cocktails to invent. Mellow Corn has not changed its label or packaging either, so it looks like a 1950’s billboard (which is actually part of the charm). But this is a serious Whiskey that is a part of the real heritage of distilling in the US.
Mellow Corn is actually “in bond.” This is a ancient designation from the “Bottled-in-Bond Act of 1897” which was passed in reaction to cheap and inferior Whiskies entering the market back in the day. If a Whiskey is “in bond” it must be aged at least four years in a federally bonded warehouse and bottled at 100 proof (50% ABV).