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Bourbon, or bourbon whiskey, is a variety of American whiskey made primarily from corn.

Production edit

Like other whiskeys, bourbon starts by grinding a mixture of grains and mixing with water. The grain content must be at least 51% corn,[1] and the remainder is typically made up of any combination of rye, wheat, and/or barley.[2] This mixture is then fermented with yeast to generate alcohol, and this product is then distilled to no more than 160 proof, or 80% alcohol by volume.[1] The distillate is diluted to no higher than 125 proof (62.5% alcohol) before transfer to fresh charred oak barrels for aging.[1] This aging process imparts color and flavor to the liquor.[2] After aging, the finished product may be diluted to no less than 80 proof (40% alcohol) before bottling.

Characteristics edit

Bourbon is amber in color with a flavor profile incorporating tannins, caramelized sugars, and hints of vanilla.[3] Bourbons that include wheat tend to have a sweeter flavor than those using rye.[2] No flavorings or colorings may be added. It can range from 80–125 proof (40-62.5% alcohol content), and it must be aged in freshly-charred oak barrels. Although a common myth states that bourbon must be made in Kentucky, United States law states only that it must be made in the United States.[1][2]

Straight bourbon is a specific type of bourbon that is aged for at least 2 years.[2]

Uses edit

Bourbon can be drunk straight or used in a variety of cocktails such as the mint julep, old fashioned, whiskey sour, and more.[3] It can also be used to contribute flavor when cooking and baking.[4]

Recipes edit

References edit

  1. a b c d "This Is the Difference Between Bourbon and Whiskey". Food & Wine. Retrieved 2024-01-10.
  2. a b c d e "The Serious Eats Guide to Bourbon". Serious Eats. Retrieved 2024-01-10.
  3. a b "Why Is Bourbon Different From Other Whiskies?". The Spruce Eats. Retrieved 2024-01-10.
  4. "The Complete Bourbon Guide (UPDATED 2022)". VinePair. Retrieved 2024-01-10.