Elijah Craig Captures Single-Barrel Top Honors

How good are Master Distiller Parker Beam’s bourbons?

The man behind the winner of Cocktail.com’s single-barrel competition, Elijah Craig, and third-placed Henry McKenna bested one of his other creations in our taste-off: the Spirit Journal’s 1999 Whiskey of the Year, fourth-placed Evan Williams.

Although Evan ranked fourth, the editors at Cocktail.com also rated it the Best Bourbon for the Buck. Many of our experts were impressed by its unusually smooth palate and easy finish.

Rock Hill Farms broke up the dominant family of bourbons, rating a strong number two. Its crisp, sweet nose and smooth finish made this bourbon worthy of the rich price.

Bourbon aficionado craving a more rough finish will probably prefer Hancock’s Reserve, Wild Turkey Kentucky Spirit or the pioneer of single-barrel bourbon, Blanton’s.

Here are this month’s results:

RankBrandPriceScoreTastes Like …
1Elijah Craig 18-year-old$3699nutty, vanilla
2Rock Hill Farms$5098creamy
3Henry McKenna$2897sweet, rich
4Evan Williams 1990 Vintage$2296smoky
5Elmer T. Lee$2590caramel
6Hancock Reserve$5087rough and tumble
7Blanton’s Single-Barrel$4585light with a bite
8Wild Turkey Kentucky Spirit$4584harsh