5 Best Whiskeys We Tasted in May 2023
Here at Whiskey Raiders, we taste a lot of whiskeys, and if you don’t monitor our site on a daily basis, it’s easy to miss some of our reviews. For that reason, we like to take some time at the end of each month to shine a spotlight on the best whiskeys we tasted.
Some of these are brand-new releases, while others have been out for a while but just happened to cross our desk for the first time.
The Best Whiskeys We Tasted in May 2023
Whiskey JYPSI Legacy
A new brand from country music artist Eric Church, Whiskey JYPSI was unveiled in May. The first JYPSI whiskey is Legacy Batch 001, a blend of 7- and 8-year-old Indiana bourbon (70% of the blend), 20-year-old Canadian rye whiskey (21%) and 4-year-old Indiana single malt (9%).
Bottled at 115 proof and priced at $199.99, this is no run-of-the-mill celebrity whiskey. It’s clear that a great deal of thought was put into this high-quality blended whiskey, and we greatly enjoyed the JYPSI debut.
Whiskey JYPSI Legacy features sweet butter, honey, caramel, sweet cream, rising bread and salted caramel on the nose. The palate is rich and complex, with notes of oak, salted caramel, cherry, raspberry and tobacco. The finish is long and the highlight of the pour, with oak, toffee, crème brûlée, cocoa and vanilla bean.
Green River Wheated Bourbon
Distilled and bottled by Green River Distilling in Owensboro, Kentucky, this is the producer’s first wheated bourbon release — and Green River nailed it.
Bottled at 90 proof, Green River Wheated Bourbon is sweet and buttery on the nose, with caramel, buttercream, vanilla ice cream and a touch of praline. On the palate, the slightly heightened ABV adds character with notes of vanilla, carame candies, butterscotch and tiramisu. The finish is moderate in length, ending with caramel, toffee, honey, maple candies, crème brûlée and cinnamon.
Green River Wheated Bourbon is widely available and can be found at a suggested retail price of $34.99.
The latest release from Seattle-based American single malt distillery Westland, Solum debuted in March. This peated single malt, which will be an annual release, is aged for a minimum of 41 months in a combination of new and ex-bourbon casks.
Bottled at 100 proof, Westland Solum features sweet caramel, fresh-popped popcorn, honey, char, melon and teriyaki beef jerky on the nose, with a sweet palate filled with caramel, cream, pepper, ash, clove and peat. This American single malt is reminiscent of a Laphroaig peat bomb. The finish is long with char, caramel, cocoa, espresso and ash.
This whiskey is lovely and more reminiscent of a scotch than any other American single malt we’ve tasted to date.
Westland Solum is a limited release, found for a suggested retail price of $149.99.
Wolves Whiskey Lot One
This is the first single malt to come from California whiskey producer Wolves, which was founded by entrepreneurs James Bond (Undefeated) and Jon Buscemi (Buscemi, Greats, Truff, Oliver, Peoples). Wolves is distilling its single malts in a pot still imported from Cognac, France. Lot One was distilled in 2015 and bottled at 110 proof.
Buscemi said he believed this whiskey could be master distiller Marko Karakasevic’s magnum opus, and this impressively rich bottling met the high expectations that came along with that claim.
Bold, rich and malty on the nose, this well-proofed single malt is fudge-forward on the palate with tons of espresso, plus caramel, toffee, tobacco, baking spice and oak. The finish is long and full of coffee, oak, maple, brown butter, salted caramel and clove.
A limited release, only 2,250 bottles of Wolves Whiskey Lot One were released at a suggested price of $289.
Old Charter Oak Spanish Oak
A brand-new release from Buffalo Trace, this is the latest bourbon in the Old Charter Oak line, a series that runs contrary to the common misconception that bourbon must be aged in American oak. This release is aged in a new, charred Spanish oak barrel. Spanish oak is commonly used to age sherry.
Bottled at 92 proof, Old Charter Oak Spanish Oak is big, bold and rich on the nose with notes of baked apple, pears, bold maple, brown sugar, cherries, cocoa and a touch of espresso. On the palate, a medium mouthfeel is joined by brown sugar, sweet oak, pepper and ginger. Old Charter Oak Spanish Oak exits gracefully, with red fruits, cherries, sweet cream, pepper and ginger.
Old Charter Oak Spanish Oak will release soon in select U.S. markets at a suggested retail price of $69.99.
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