About American Blended Whiskey

About American Blended Whiskey
Blended American Whiskey is required to contain at least 20% straight whiskey; with the balance being unaged neutral spirit or, in a few cases, high-proof light whiskey. It has a general whiskey flavor profile (most closely resembling Bourbon), but lacks any defining taste characteristic.

Blended whiskies date from the early 19th century when the invention of the column still made possible the production of neutral spirits. Distillers would blend one or more straight whiskies (Bourbon and Rye) with these neutral spirits in varying proportions to create their own branded blend. The taste and quality of these whiskies, then as now, varies according to the ratio of straight whiskey to neutral grain spirit. Early blends were frequently flavored with everything from sherry to plug tobacco. Compared to straight whiskies they were relatively inexpensive and bland in character. Modern blends utilize dozens of different straight whiskies to insure a consistent flavor profile. Blended American whiskies had a great sales boost during and just after World War II when distillers promoted them as a way of stretching their limited supply of straight whiskey. This sales spike did not last, however. Blended whiskies were considered to be too bland by Bourbon and Rye drinkers, and consumers with a taste for lighter spirits soon migrated to Vodka and Gin. Blended whiskies have been leading the pack in declining sales over the past few decades.

Top Picks for American Blended Whiskey

High West Campfire Whiskey
93 points
$65
Pale amber color. Rich, inviting, complex smoky aromas of malted chocolate, roasted nuts, and delicate smoky earth with a silky, vibrant, fruity medium-to-full body and a peppery, distinctive, very long mango chutney, vanilla cream, rich baking spices, and peat and tea finish. A superb delicately smoky whisky that is sure to please and bridges American and Scottish styles beautifully.
Boondocks American Whiskey
90 points
$39.99
Bright light gold color. Creamy aromas and flavors of tapioca, pound cake with apricot, nut brittle, and mocha cream with a satiny, bright, dry-yet-fruity medium body and a warming, amusing, creme brulee, fruit cake, delicate spice, and nuts finish. A creamy and easy-drinking blended whiskey with substance.
90 points $39.99
Great Northern Distilling Vanguard Whiskey
88 points
$38
Golden amber color. Aromas of conditioned suede, fruit pastry, and butter cookie with a lightly tannic, crisp, dryish body and a peppery, brisk dark roasted nuts, vanilla yogurt, bbq woods, and slate finish. A grainy, spicy, earthy whisky for cocktails.
Rogue Spirits Dead Guy Whiskey
88 points
$39.95
Minutely hazy deep gold color. Bright, fruity, attractive aromas of dried apricot, tapioca, and raisin bran with a soft, bright, fruity light-to-medium body and a warming, engaging, medium-length toasted grain, frosting, and granola finish. A nice, fruity, easy drinking single malt.
88 points $39.95
Great Lakes Distillery KinnicKinnic American Blended Whiskey
87 points
$35
Medium amber color. Curious, nutty aromas and flavors of fresh peanut butter and jelly sandwich, praline and beer nuts, suede, and dried apricot with a supple, bright, dry-yet-fruity medium body and a warming, interesting, medium-long toasted peach scone, nuts, and pumice finish. An interesting nutty, fruity blend for sipping or creative cocktails.
Awards: 2017 Best American Blended Whiskey
Chicken Cock "Bootleggers Reserve" Whiskey
87 points
$37.99
Gold color. Inviting aromas and flavors of honeyed dried fruits, peach cobbler, roasted nuts, and white chocolate mint with a silky, bright, fruity medium body and a tingling, interesting, medium-long leather, sandalwood, baking spices, and cream finish. A rock solid blended whisky that will be very versatile.
87 points $37.99
Boondocks Cask Strength American Whiskey
87 points
$59.99
Light gold color. Aromas and flavors of pepper, mocha, cedar incense, and fresh newspaper with a supple, crisp, petillant, dry-yet-fruity medium-to-full body and a peppery, delightful, long toffee, creme brulee, dried fruits, and white pepper and ink finish. A brawny cask-strength whisky with a warm, creamy underbelly.
87 points $59.99
Burnside West End Blended American Whiskey
85 points
$26.95
Light gold color. Aromas of kettle corn and caramel sauce with a silky, bright, dry-yet-fruity light body and a smooth, relaxed chocolate covered redskin peanuts finish. An easy-drinking blended whiskey that hits all the notes.
85 points $26.95
Speckled Tail American Whiskey
85 points
$16.99
Golden amber color. Aromas of vanilla, orange sherbet, peach-pecan pie, rainbow snocone, and candy corn and wheat grass with a satiny, fruity light-to-medium body and a warming, intriguing, snappy dill, tart nectarine, and rose perfume finish. A pleasant blended whiskey with wide appeal.
85 points $16.99
Title 21 American Whiskey
85 points
$24.99
Light gold color. Aromas and flavors of corn pudding, buttered grits, and toasted marshmallow with a glycerous, soft, dry-yet-fruity light body and a tingling, rapid ginseng gum finish. A light and mild American Whiskey.
85 points $24.99