You know who knows best which bottles to buy? The people who pour and sell drinks—that’s who. We asked dozens of top bartending and spirits industry professionals to tell us which bottles they love and why.
Heads up: The numerical order below is not organized by importance or quality; it’s an alphabetical list, not a ranking. Prices are averages and can vary from state to state.
“Hibiki Japanese Harmony is a blended whiskey from the Suntory family that contains distillates from the Yamazaki, Hakushu and Chita distilleries in Japan. It’s a lovely sipping whiskey with a slightly floral nose, and on the palate, it reads rich honey with spices and slight smoke finishing with chocolate notes.”—Cari Hah, bar manager at Los Angeles' Big Bar
“Aging this Indian whiskey in a hot climate imparts flavors found more in Caribbean pot-still rums, and it’s hard to keep hidden in a mixed drink. The rough corners of this malt won't appeal to all, but it sure is worth trying, because if you love it, you may never look back.”—Peder Schweigert, general manager at Minneapolis' Marvel Bar
“It’s an absolute classic and still my favorite of the fancier Irish whiskeys.”—Bodenheimer
Mixing your cocktail