Whiskey glasses with a decanter
The 16 Best High-Proof Bourbons
Elijah Craig
Elijah Craig Barrel Proof expression is the purest and uncut version, bearing the famous name of the "Father of Bourbon," Reverend Elijah Craig.
The nose is huge but without much in the way of burn. The palate is thick and leathery, with notes of chocolate, rye, and roasted vanilla complemented by caramel and butterscotch.
Blanton's Straight From The Barrel is a hand-picked, unblended, single-barrel bourbon. Its proof varies between batches but tends to sit around the 130-proof mark.
It offers the aroma of butter, caramel, earthy cocoa, hazelnut, oaky vanilla, toasted nuts, and a touch of rye spice with honey and light toffee, and has a lingering finish.
Like many small-batch bourbons, the Booker's strength varies, usually between 120 and 130 proof. The nose is hot but with plenty of oak beneath the burn.
Its taste is sweet, with raisin and vanilla complementing the candied wood aspects and giving way to leather and older oak. Booker's finish is long and lingering.
Knob Creek
Knob Creek Cask Strength is a high-end, small-batch bourbon brand sitting at the 120-proof mark. Its extended aging mellows the spirit and reduces the harsher elements.
The robust aroma and palate boast rich toffee, cinnamon, dark chocolate, hints of toasted coconut, and mature tobacco, while the mouthfeel is chewy and spicy.
W.L. Weller
W.L. Weller first used wheat instead of rye in the mash bill, resulting in a smoother, less sharp, sweeter, and less spicy bourbon, sitting at the 114-proof mark.
The wheat's milder characteristics temper higher alcohol content. The whiskey's nose, palate, and finish are heavy with rich caramel, sweet vanilla, and thick oak.