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Last Minute Gifts: 5 Perfect Bourbons For The Holidays

One of the most fascinating aspects of the bourbon industry is how rapidly things can change despite whiskey’s long, slow journey from distillation to proper aging. With the holidays fast approaching, here are five bourbon releases you won’t want to miss to celebrate the holidays and New Year. 

Elijah Craig Barrel Proof

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Lovingly known as the “Father of Bourbon” to many, Elijah Craig hails from the Heaven Hill family of brands. As it offers both well-aged small-batch releases and the iconic Barrel Proof series, it’s easy to find a flavorful release from Elijah Craig, no matter your preference for age statements and price.

Any of the 2022 releases of Elijah Craig Barrel Proof are an easy shoo-in for the best bourbon to give as a gift. It’s difficult to find a 12-year bourbon these days, let alone one with the combination of quality and high proof of Heaven Hill’s crown jewel.

Jack Daniel’s Bonded Bottled in Bond

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Previously only available overseas, this cult-favorite release finally arrived in the U.S. in 2022. Available in both 700-milliliter and 1-liter formats, this value champion makes for a great bang-for-buck pickup at a nice proof point.

Aged for at least four years and bottled at 100 proof, this release from the Tennessee whiskey giant occupies a perfect medium between its low-proof Old No.7 and high-proof Single Barrel Barrel Proof. Quickly becoming available in the majority of the country, this previously tough-to-find whiskey is a perfect holiday whiskey gift.

WhistlePig PiggyBack Bourbon

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Known for its prolific presence in the modern rye whiskey game, WhistlePig surprised everyone in 2022 with its 6-year PiggyBack bourbon whiskey. Bottled at 100 proof, this release combines MGP and Vermont-distilled bourbon, is well-aged and available nationally for nothing short of a bargain.

It’s always fascinating to see a producer that exists so strongly in a particular spirit category broach a new one. With the release of PiggyBack Bourbon, it appears that WhistlePig is ready to move into bourbon full-time. We’ve got our eyes peeled for future projects!

Still Austin Cask Strength

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It’s rare that a Texas-based whiskey storms into Raiders central and scores highly, but Still Austin is clobbering the whiskey game with talent. This limited release is sort of a misnomer — it’s easier to find than you might think — and it’s one of the best Texas bourbons we’ve had all year.

Thankfully, the Still operation is quite small, making it the perfect gift for the bourbon drinker in your life or office, and it’s a great conversation piece, as Still Austin employs the palate of one of whiskey’s most talented blenders, Nancy Fraley.

George Dickel 13 Year Bottled in Bond

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George Dickel is the most underrated bourbon distillery around right now. There, we said it. Releasing a 13-year, bottled-in-bond bourbon for under $60 is a feat of greatness. It’s wild. The best part? You can find it. It’s not at every gas station or CVS, but tracking down a bottle isn’t the hunt that it used to be.

For folks who believe only great whiskey comes from Kentucky … show them this Tennessee gem. It’s the best deal in town.

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Jay West, better known as t8ke across the internet and beyond, is a multi-disciplined spirits writer, media personality and above all else, drinks enthusiast. From tastings to conventions and events, you can always expect to find Jay wherever fine drinks are being served.