Spirits & Liqueurs Bourbon

8 New Bourbons to Try Right Now

Sourcing has become the go-to method for new bourbon producers.

new bourbon bottles 2022

Liquor.com / Laura Sant

As bourbon continues to boom, new-product launches have become a near-daily occurrence. Producers are tinkering with every aspect of the spirit to entice drinkers looking for their next pour.

That might mean barrel finishes, as with Bardstown Bourbon Co. and its ever-evolving line of collaborations with other spirits and wine brands, or Buzzard’s Roost, an up-and-comer that is making a name for itself with secondary cask treatments. Or it could be as simple as offering a bourbon at higher-than-average maturity: Heaven’s Door, the Bob Dylan-endorsed brand whose range usually eschews age statements, recently debuted the first in a series of whiskeys aged for a decade or more.

Creating unique bourbons through blending has become a favorite way for producers to set themselves apart. Barrell Craft Spirits has built its entire business on this model, with whiskeys like Vantage showcasing the skill of the company’s blending team. Sweetens Cove, which made a splashy, celebrity-backed debut in 2020, recently returned with a more accessible whiskey that combines both Kentucky and Tennessee bourbons. Another celebrity bourbon, Brother’s Bond—backed by “Vampire Diaries” stars Ian Somerhalder and Paul Wesley—is staying fresh with fans through a new cask-strength expression.

The common thread that runs through these new releases: sourcing. Every brand on this list bought its whiskey from another distillery—even those that have their own facilities, like Bardstown, Nelson’s Green Brier, and Village Garage. Those companies are actively distilling, waiting for their whiskey to mature, and seeking to keep up with consumers’ relentless search for new releases in the meantime by sourcing other liquid. 

There’s a long tradition of non-distiller producers—also called rectifiers—in American whiskey, so this isn’t a new trend. But the fact that so many recent bourbon releases are taking this path is certainly a sign of the times.

These are eight new bottles to sample.

  • Bardstown Bourbon Co. Château de Laubade Cask-Finished ($160)

    Bardstown Bourbon Co. Château de Laubade Cask-Finished bottle

    Liquor.com / Laura Sant

    Though it makes whiskey for dozens of other brands, Bardstown Bourbon Co. also has a thriving portfolio of its own, including products born of cross-category collaborations. Most of these Collaborative Series releases are one and done, but occasionally they’ll return, as is the case for this bourbon finished in casks from Armagnac powerhouse Château de Laubade. While the previous iteration, which came out in the spring of 2020, comprised 12-year-old Indiana bourbon with an 18-month finish, this version finishes 12-year-old Kentucky and 10-year-old Tennessee bourbons for 16 months. At a robust 107 proof, the bourbon is full-bodied and rich with flavor: A little goes a long way.

  • Barrell Vantage ($90)

    Barrell Vantage bourbon bottle

    Liquor.com / Laura Sant

    Barrell Craft Spirits started by releasing one-off expressions of bourbon, each intended to be unique, and while that practice continues, the company now also offers a consistent lineup of core whiskeys such as Seagrass and Armida. Vantage is the latest in that range, combining straight bourbons that have been finished in three cask types with varying char and toast levels: mizunara, French, and toasted American oak. The component whiskeys, distilled in Kentucky, Indiana, and Tennessee, are finished separately, then blended using Barrell’s meticulous, systematic process, with the final product bottled at barrel proof.

  • Brother’s Bond Cask Strength ($80)

    Brother’s Bond Cask Strength bourbon bottle

    Liquor.com / Laura Sant

    Ian Somerhalder and Paul Wesley, co-stars of “The Vampire Diaries,” are most famous for their on-screen drama and certified heartthrob status. But the duo may soon receive equal billing for their bourbon brand, Brother’s Bond, which launched in 2021 and rolled out a barrel-proof extension the following spring. Made at Indiana’s MGP Distillery, Brother’s Bond is the rare celebrity bourbon whose star owners genuinely seem to know and love whiskey. The limited-edition Cask Strength bourbon will be joined by Brother’s Bond rye in the near future.

  • Buzzard’s Roost Toasted French Oak ($85)

    Buzzard’s Roost Toasted French Oak bourbon bottle

    Liquor.com / Laura Sant

    A newcomer to the whiskey scene, Buzzard’s Roost focuses on blending and bottling bourbon and rye, often after finishing or otherwise putting its own stamp on the liquid. This release was made at Indiana’s MGP Distillery from a mash bill of 74% corn, 21% rye, and 5% malted barley. Aged five years, it was then finished in toasted oak barrels from the Limousin region of France. Buzzard’s Roost also recently released a bourbon finished in toasted American oak, for those who want to compare the flavor impacts of the different woods.

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  • Heaven’s Door The Decade Series ($99)

    Heaven’s Door The Decade Series bourbon bottle

    Liquor.com / Laura Sant

    In contrast to the Vampire Diaries guys, Bob Dylan has little apparent involvement in this whiskey brand that touts his partnership, other than lending his name, artwork, and occasional catalogue excerpts. No matter: Heaven’s Door has proven successful in and of itself with a portfolio of mostly American whiskeys. The latest release, a 10-year-old Tennessee bourbon, is the first in a series that will feature whiskeys aged a decade or more. It’s made from a mashbill featuring 22% rye and bottled at 50% ABV, with no chill filtration or charcoal mellowing.

  • Nelson Brothers Classic ($37)

    Nelson Brothers Classic bourbon bottle

    Liquor.com / Laura Sant

    Andy and Charlie Nelson revived their three-times great-grandfather’s distillery, Nelson’s Green Brier, north of Nashville in 2009, and since then have launched the popular Belle Meade bourbon brand, made at MGP, and their own Tennessee whiskey. Their latest release, Nelson Brothers, is a blend of straight, high-rye bourbons distilled in Kentucky, Indiana, and Tennessee. The Nelson Brothers line currently has two expressions: the 93.3 proof Classic and the 107.8 proof Reserve ($60).

  • Sweetens Cove Kennessee ($60)

    Sweetens Cove Kennessee bourbon bottle

    Liquor.com / Laura Sant

    Yet another celebrity bourbon, backed by Peyton Manning and Andy Roddick, among others, Sweetens Cove made headlines when it debuted in 2020 with a $200 13-year-old Tennessee bourbon. A second batch followed in 2021, but this year the brand came out with the more accessibly priced Kennessee, a blend of Kentucky and Tennessee bourbons finished with toasted sugar maple wood. Master blender Marianne Eaves, who worked at Woodford Reserve and Castle & Key before striking out on her own, creates all the Sweetens Cove products.

  • Village Garage ($50)

    Village Garage bourbon bottle

    Liquor.com / Laura Sant

    Housed in an actual former garage in picturesque Bennington, Vermont, Village Garage Distillery is the shared dream of friends Matt Cushman and Glenn Sauer. After opening the distillery in 2021, they purchased aged whiskey from another Vermont distillery that was going out of business, while laying down new-make—using the same recipe and featuring Vermont-grown grain—under the direction of head distiller and industry veteran Ryan Scheswohl. In addition to bourbon and rye, Village Garage offers Bonfire, a whiskey blended with locally made Sugar Bob’s smoked maple syrup.