9 Biggest Bourbon Myths and Misunderstandings Heard Nowadays
Is bourbon whiskey really gaining popularity over the last few years? Bourbon whiskey’s popularity has soared in recent years worldwide, and we have no clue about it! The business has immensely grown in various parts of the world despite the pandemic going on.
While we appreciate that bars and shops today have an extensive range of the spirit, we do hear many misconceptions about it.
So, to clear the air, we’ve debunked some of the most popular and common bourbon myths and misunderstandings in today’s world! So, what are you waiting for? Grab yourself a bottle of bourbon, and let’s get started!
Myth No:1 ‘Jack Daniel’s’ is a Kind of Bourbon
Ask your mates to find the term “bourbon” on a bottle of Jack Daniel’s for a quick bar bet to win. Since the liquor is a Tennessee whisky, not a bourbon, you’ll always see a tag on them.
What’s the difference between the two? Before it’s placed into bourbon barrels, Jack Daniel’s goes through a specialized charcoal-filtering procedure with the help of used bourbon barrels.
Myth No:2 Older the Bourbon, the Better
Bourbons stored in used bourbon barrels for a more extended period can be superior to others, but they are not the best. Bourbon Whiskey matures over time, absorbing the spices left behind by the burnt bourbon barrel.
When bourbon absorbs a lot of these flavors, it can become dusty and bitter in taste. And I guess this is not something you want, right? Along with the fermentation period, distilling the finest bourbon whiskey requires several different aspects.
Myth No:3 Only Kentucky Produces Bourbon
Though most bourbon is produced in Kentucky (the Kentucky Distillers’ Association estimates that 95 percent of the world’s production is made there), the bourbon whiskey can legally be distilled anywhere in the United States.
I’ve also sampled bourbons from all over the world, including Tuthilltown Spirits in upstate New York and Some Spirits in Chicago.
Myth No:4 It’s Illegal to Add Ice or Mixes
You shouldn’t be concerned with people who say stuff like this. Ignore them and drink the whisky however you like. If you know why applying a little water to Scotch changes the flavor profile?
If you want your bourbon chilled, fill your glass halfway with ice. It would melt more slowly, allowing the drink to stay cold for longer. After all, whiskey is a sophisticated beverage!
Try incorporating bourbon whiskey into the mix the next time you’re preparing something special for your mates.
Myth No: 5 Four years is the Minimum Age Requirement for Bourbon!
Surprisingly, there is no minimum age requirement for whiskey in the United States. There’s also no prerequisite that the oak barrels or the bourbon barrels used to store it should be of American origin.
It just needs to be kept in clean, charred old bourbon barrels according to the regulations. It’s probably legal to store it for five seconds.
Myth No:6 Bourbon, like a Good Wine, Improves with Age!
This reaction is entirely up to you. Bourbon Whiskey does evolve as it ages, and some people like the changes and others do not. It’s all up to your taste and palate preferences.
It is said that “older whiskey is more expensive.” This is because there’s less of it, partially because bourbon evaporates from the bottle as it ages – but it doesn’t mean it’s always better.
Myth No: 7 It’s Better to Drink Single Malt Scotch!
That is arbitrary, i.e., snobbery. It is claimed that bottled in bond bourbon is much more challenging to produce than single malt (all-malt, pot stills, at least three years old, all from one distillery, etc.).
Bourbon in a bonded whiskey must come from the same distillery, be produced during the same distilling season (two per year), be supervised by the same bourbon barrels, be at least four years old, and be distilled at 100 proof.
Myth No: 8 Bourbon is Spelled as “Whiskey,” Not “Whisky!”
It turns out that it’s only a matter of personal taste when it comes to spelling. “Maker’s Mark, for example, is bourbon but continues to advertise it as whisky. The whiskey spelling is used in the federal law that specifies how bourbon should be produced.
It’s not because of the pronunciation that Bourbon differs from Scotch. So it can be called in both ways, be it as “Bourbon Whiskey” or “Bourbon Whisky.”
Myth No: 9 There is Only One Known Origin!
I’ve done my fair share of bourbon research and discovered a variety of claims regarding the roots of the spirit, but none that have lasted. Owing to the lack of evidence, it’s challenging to consider any of the hypotheses.
According to one of the statements, our favorite drink was created in bourbon barrels by a Baptist minister who was also a distiller. Others credit Jacob Spears of Bourbon County, Kentucky, for the first bourbon whiskey naming.
We assume that putting all of the blame on one party might not be the right approach. What proof do we have, after all?
Do you think you have what it takes to become America’s Next Bourbon Snob?
We’ve demolished the myths and misunderstandings, but every bourbon has its own set of dynamics that must be explored.
I hope this article was helpful to you, and now you won’t come under any myths related to bourbon whisky! So, keep enjoying your sip of bourbon whiskey, and don’t forget to put your comments in the comment section below!
Rachel Moore works as a Marketing Manager at Rocky Mountain Barrel Company. Rocky Mountain Barrel Company provides used wooden barrels for spirits, like bourbon barrels, whiskey barrels, rum barrels, and wine barrels. Rachel Moore loves her combination of nature, wine, and nerdy friends who appreciate her homemade wines.