Top 10 Best Inexpensive Whiskeys
We’ve all been there. You want to get something to drink for the weekend, but payday hasn’t hit yet. You’re a little short on scratch, but you don’t want to sacrifice on quality. You’re looking for an inexpensive whiskey, not a cheap whiskey.
Here at Abov whether through our own financial misdoings or a crippling need to acquire new bottles, we’ve found ourselves in this situation time and again and want to make sure you’re prepared to get the best dram for your Dollar, Euro, or Pound. All of the whiskeys below can be found under $50, so we’re not talking bottom shelf, but you shouldn’t need to dip into the savings account. (Editor’s note: due to variations in retail price, some of these may not always be under $50, but keep looking and we’re confident you’ll be able to find a good price!)
Finding a decent Islay Scotch for under $50 is no easy task, but thankfully the distillers at Laphroaig were kind enough to give us this gem which acts as a “fantastic introduction to peated whisky” (and that’s directly from their site!).
As a blended single malt, there is complexity and depth to the flavors, but they still contain that famous Islay backbone of smoke, peat, and oak.
The logistics alone of getting this bottle off the Isle of Skye seems like it would cost over $50. Getting it into your hands at that price makes it an amazing combination of delicious and affortable.
Created to mimic the stormy seas of its home, Talisker Skye brings out the best qualities found in islands Scotch. Wood, brine, and spice combine together to make this ‘stormy’ whisky what it is.
One of the world’s most recognizable bottles, this “small block of whisky” is a gift to us from Japan. Clocking in at over 100 proof (51.4% ABV) and blended from over 100 different batches of whisky together it’s a wonder that the distillers are able to create a consistent flavor profile.
The result is classic Japanese harmony. No individual flavor notes dominate and a mellow and sweet whisky is able to shine through. Given the focus and craftsmanship in each bottle, it’s a wonder that it remains attainable for $50
Is it a Kentucky staple? Is it a Texas upstart? Either way it’s fairly priced and delicious bourbon from Wild Turkey.
They start with an 8-year Kentucky Straight Bourbon (8 year! for less than $50!!) and “introduce” it to Texas mesquite charcoals. The resulting nectar is classic bourbon with a oaky overtones, caramelly mouthfeel, and a smooth finish.
Don’t let the “Isle” name fool you, this Highland whisky is completely different from the Talisker whiskey above. Still, given the location, it’s a miracle that they can produce a whisky this delicious for under $50.
Replace the salt and peat from the islands with caramel, spice, and citrus. The combination of flavors creates an incredible warming effect that should not be missed.
Designed for the urban drinker that likes a more complex full-flavored whisky this one certainly packs a punch. For under $50 you get a blast of peat and smoke that gives “impressions of a coal fire”.
Further the whiskey gives flavors of sticky toffee pudding with the sweetness coming from the sherry. Sounds like quite the taste adventure!
It’s a definite rarity to be able to find a (good) single barrel whiskey for under $50, but Four Roses has this down to a science, literally.
With 10 distinct recipes that they cycle through, you could make your own top 10 list just using this label! Each recipe is classic, if slightly mellow, bourbon in every way; sweet on the nose, robust on the palate and smooth on the finish.
“The scotch for non-scotch drinkers” or at least that’s the unofficial slogan. If you’re looking for peat and smoke, look elsewhere! If you’re looking for a mellow scotch for a mellow price, you’re in the right spot.
Sweetness pervades this whisky with vanilla, syrup, and fudge as the overwhelming flavors. There is a hint of smoke at the end, like someone just put out a candle in the next room.
Why double rye and not just rye? Because double is more! There are no surprises with this whiskey as it was built to highlight the spicy sweetness inherent to one of the earliest grains cultivated by man.
Bright and bold with typical rye spices such as cinnamon coming through along with a powerful floral quality. For the price, it has a wonderful balance and gets even better over a rock or with a couple of drops of water.
“The ultimate expression of Canadian rye whiskey”. Similar to the High West whiskey above, this one highlights the sole grain in the mash: rye. Spicy and sweet this bottle does not disappoint on that regard.
Where it differs from its Southern neighbor is the oakiness that pervades the whiskey. Not for the faint of heart, oak and spice are a powerful combination.
This list goes to show that you don’t need to spend lavishly for a delicious whiskey. Now, let’s say you’re on the other side of payday and do want to splurge a little. If you’re looking for a favorite you can check out our top whiskeys from 2022. If you’re looking for something different, we have a list of the most popular whiskeys right now!
Just remember, regardless of your budget, you can always find a delicious whiskey and we’re here to help make sure that the next whiskey you buy is your new favorite!
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