The best part? You may be surprised. This blended highland Scotch is rich with slight notes of toasted grain and spice. Time with Basil Hayden’s is like … The professional tasting panel at the spirits competition named Johnny Walker Black Label a finalist, and noted aromas of breakfast cereal, cedar, and toasted earth along with flavors of rolled oats, nutmeg, and hints of smoke. It’s a hybrid — marrying single malt scotch to single malt whisky from Virginia. The spicy, non-chill filtered, bottled-in-bond whiskey you’ve come to expect from New Riff – with an heirloom grain twist. and 2) is it under $50? Experts describe the layers of flavor as juicy and ripe, with clear notes of peach as well as baking spices and a touch of oak. Judges at the spirits face-off awarded it the Chairman's Trophy in years past and highlighted the complex nose of almond butter and coffee grounds, slight smoky finish, and flavors of ripe tree fruits with candied orange peel. Hailing from the oldest distillery still going strong in Kentucky, Woodford Reserve bourbon tastes of honey and spice, coffee, and ginger, and gives off scents of cocoa, smoke, and even leather. The smoothness of this dram really shines, as the wheat evens out the sip while adding a layer of depth that’s very engaging. Definitely drop in some water to help it reach its full potential or just drink it on the rocks as I do. Find yours now for around $50. 15 New Whiskeys Under $50 to Gift in 2019, latest limited edition bottling from Knob Creek, mourning the loss of the Kentucky-only 6-year Bottled-in-Bond, has only hit shelves in a few states thus far. A great choice for those looking to stay out of the world of heavy peat. 1. This hits enough of those creamy, bourbony notes to drink with a few rocks. The berries are the real star of the show as the oak takes a back seat. Tasters describe the top-shelf flavor as balanced between sweet floral honey and an earthy spiciness. And others are finished or double barreled, if you’re hunting for a perfect present for the whiskey lover who has everything. The blend has a focus on mildly spicy and boldly fruity yeasts. There will be a little variance amongst these bottles but they tend to always blossom with a little water or a rock or two. A going price of around $40 for a 750 ml bottle is a very good deal for a single malt Irish whiskey. Of the nine spirits that qualified as "world whisky" in the 2017 Ultimate Spirits Challenge, this is the only one in the category that comes in at under $50 (it can be found for around $28 per 750 ml bottle). I’d argue it’s perfectly suited for an “on the rocks” order if you want a nice mix of berry sweet with mild peat smoke. Though we’d all like to try every whisky on the market, every whiskey lover has to make some hard decisions. Basil Hayden’s Kentucky Bourbon, $37. The palate embraces the spiciness while adding a hint of caramel, malts, orange oils, and dried bouquet garni (herbs) on the tongue. Sign up here for our daily Thrillist email and subscribe here for our YouTube channel to get your fix of the best in food/drink/fun. It'll make you glad you made it to the end of the list. Maybe it’s best to call it a “blended” whisky and just leave it at that. We couldn’t resist. This is a smooth, thick sipper, and consumers consider it an excellent base for an Old Fashioned. The juice is a blend of around 40 whiskies that are each aged for a minimum of 12 years. Each 750 ml bottle runs about $25 or less. Highland Park 12 Year Price: $50 But when it tastes this good -- fragrant leather, tree bark, and tobacco followed by figgy pudding, hazelnuts, boozy sherry, and what only can be described as those Christmas chocolate oranges that break into cute little slices when you smash them -- you don’t ask questions. The juice is then blended into this easy-sipper. It’s our list and we’re giving it a spot. The first bottled-in-bond ever from Cascade Hollow arrived on shelves earlier this year with an impressive 13-year age statement. Professional tasters detect aromas of banana, orange zest, and cinnamon on the air and like its smoky character and smooth finish. It’s also a steal at under $30 a bottle (pending your state’s taxes, of course). This edition of Famous Grouse is a nice step up from their entry-level blend (which is a great highball base, by the way). Winner of a great value award from Ultimate Beverage Challenge, this bottle draws 5-star ratings and can be found for around $15 per 750 ml bottle. Earning 96 points and stealing the Chairman’s Trophy at Ultimate Spirits Challenge 2017, this favorite Canadian whisky impressed the judges with a bold flavor profile of evolving spices. Made with a unique mash, its flavors are described as earthy, with notes of clay, cornbread, with sweet and savory oak tones tasted on the finish. To each their own on that count. Part of the Buffalo Trace company, ever batch of this whisky is actually bottled in Kentucky. The big brother to the traditional 90 proof Maker’s Mark was first announced last year as a travel retail exclusive, but just arrived at the distillery this summer. For access to exclusive gear videos, celebrity interviews, and more, subscribe on YouTube! At just 90.4 proof, it’s impossibly smooth and silky, and at just $39, its a safe bet for the newcomer to the whiskey world. This is a perfectly serviceable sipper with a few rocks, or even neat, if you prefer. Read the tasting notes to find a bottle that hits the flavor notes you love, deep freeze a few ice cubes, and enjoy! Having a good bourbon around that you can drink straight (with a little water or a few rocks) is always a solid move. Cheapism may earn a commission if you buy through a link on our site. The regular black label expression is just fine, but take things up a notch with the Bottled-in-Bond version. There are 375 ml bottles out there for about $20. The vast majority of expressions are created, at least in part, as sippers — either neat or on the rocks. So ready your whisky snifter and put on your drinking slacks, and let's get to it. Judges at the spirits challenge named it a finalist in the rye whiskey category. At this price, you can easily buy two bottles before shelling out $50. Those spicy caramel apples linger the longest with a distant wisp of oak and smoke tying off the sip’s long end. But for the price, their 15-year-old expression really is a winner. The flavors of this choice single malt whiskey are distinct and powerful, offering hits of honey, sweet spices, apricots, and malt. Best of all – it’s readily available and priced right around $30. And you should go find it as soon as you can. The sweeter aspects of the sip counterbalance the spicer ones on the long end with a whisper of that mesquite smoke. This Speyside blend from William Grant & Sons highlights the shingle’s three Dufftown distilleries: Glenfiddich, Balvenie, and Kininvie. Grab this one while you’re traveling for the holidays – we won’t tell if you put your own name on the card. The holiday season is officially upon us, and soon we’ll be out hunting for the perfect bottle to pour at the dinner table, wrap up to gift… or just keep for ourselves. Figgy pudding cut with walnuts mingles with apples and caramel on the nose. Jim Beam Devil's Cut offers an extraordinary lesson in value with a small $23 tag on a 750 ml bottle, the bottom in terms of price for this list. This is the first limited edition release from the new Northern Kentucky distillery, so even allocations for New Riff’s Whiskey Club sold out in just a few hours. This double matured whiskey is super easy-drinking. Campari’s third expression in their Whiskey Barons Collection hit shelves early this year, and at a non-chill-filtered 107 proof it is our favorite of their line so far. The end will be long and circle back to that bright orange fruitiness. The whiskey is small-batched from hand-selected barrels and bottled at a slightly higher proof than your standard bourbons. The final bottle in Woodford’s flagship line arrived this summer, in the form of a four grain whiskey with wheat as the star of the show. So it’s not a single malt.