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Ain’t nothing more American than a white picket fence, a slice of apple pie and Dolly Parton belting out the national anthem in her finest American flag leotard. Yessir.
But listen — it’s best to enjoy all of that star-spangled glory with a big ol’ glug of Whiskey. Hell, maybe two. And wouldn’t you know it, Whiskey is just as iconically American as ol’ Uncle Sam himself.
Whiskey is living its best life here in the U.S. Yeah, yeah… other countries, too. But when it comes to a bottle that’s different and bold, Whiskey is manifesting its righteous destiny all across the United States. And that’s something worth toasting to!
Whiskey’s history in the U.S. is as old — scratch that: older — than the country itself. In fact, barrels and bottles of the stuff were used as currency during the American Revolutionary war. It might even be fair to say that the United States was founded on booze... and maaaaybe a strong distaste for tyrannical rule and taxes (some things never change, eh?).
But since those early heady days, the Spirit has taken on new life in America, even spawning its very own variety: Bourbon. In fact, Bourbon is so prized in the States, there are laws governing how and where it’s made. And one thing’s for certain: the whole process absolutely must start and end in the U.S.
But the Whiskey train doesn’t stop at Bourbon. Tennessee Whiskey is just as respectable — locals might even argue that with the added step of charcoal filtration, their juice rises above any old Bourbon. And don’t count out the rising popularity of the U.S. Single malt. It’s gaining a fair share of fans all across the globe.
Which brings us to the contents of this American-grown Whiskey sampler. Starting with Coppersea Straight Rye, an intriguing, complex Empire Rye straight outta… New York. Then there’s Uncle Nearest, a Tennessee Whiskey with a story as engaging as its juice. And finally, Yellowstone Bourbon, a blend of four sourced Kentucky Bourbons.
Now it’s time to toast and taste to the U.S.A. — Cheers!
1) The Whiskey Rebellion, or Whiskey Insurrection, was a tax protest in the United States beginning in 1791, during the presidency of George Washington. The resistance came to a climax in July 1794, when a U.S. marshal arrived in western Pennsylvania to serve writs to distillers who had not paid the excise.
2) One of the most pervasive myths about Bourbon is that it has to be made in Kentucky. While Kentucky produces 95% of the world’s Bourbon, there are no regulations that prevent it from being made anywhere else in the United States.
3) Rye Whiskey is made from mash that is at least 51 per cent rye. The grain gives Rye Whiskey its spicy, sometimes peppery, and bitter flavor. Rye was a big seller before Prohibition. After decades in obscurity, it’s fashionable again. George Washington distilled Rye Whiskey at Mount Vernon.
4) Tennessee Whiskey is born from a Bourbon, but before it’s barreled it gets filtered through charcoal in a process they call the Lincoln County method.
5) The Uncle Nearest brand was inspired by the best Whiskey maker the world never knew – Nathan "Nearest" Green, the first African-American master distiller on record in the US. In the 1850s, he started working with an orphan boy named Jack Daniel (yes, THE Jack) and taught him how to make Whiskey. He was later hired as the first master distiller for Jack Daniel’s Distillery.
6) Truth bomb: People tend to think that Single Malt Whiskies aren’t blends. But guess what? They are. Single Malt Whiskies are the result of many barrels blended to create a Whisky. They just happen to come from a single distillery.
7) Bourbon set of rules refer to manufacturing method rather than location. It must be matured in new and charred casks of American white oak. No coloring or flavoring of any type is allowed. It must be matured for at least 2 years, if a bottle does not bear an age it is at least 4 years old. The mash bill must contain at least 51% corn.
An un-aged American Whisky is often called “white dog.”