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10 Best Bourbons for Hot Toddy Reviewed (2024 Updated)

Best Bourbons for Hot Toddy

Last Updated on March 13, 2024 by Lydia Martin

Cold weather calls for the best hot toddy. Hot toddies are easy to make, but getting the best bourbon for hot toddy can be complicated, especially with the wide selection of bourbons on the market. 

Fortunately, we’ve found great bourbons for hot toddy so that you can craft the cocktail just like a pro! 

Top 10 Perfect Best Bourbon for Hot Toddy 

1. Buffalo Trace Bourbon

Buffalo Trace Bourbon, Best Bourbon for Hot Toddy 

Buffalo Trace bourbon will not let you down when making a great-tasting hot toddy whiskey. For over 200 years, Buffalo Trace has been crafting great quality whiskeys that match great with cocktails like a hot toddy and old-fashioned. 

Buffalo Trace bourbon is one of the best whiskeys made from premium corn, rye, and malted barley. Before bottling, it is aged in new charred white oak barrels until it matures.

It has subtle notes of honey, lemon, caramel, brown sugar, vanilla, and a warm finish, making the flavor combination perfect for hot toddies. 

Read: Buffalo Trace & Maker’s Mark Compared

2. Bulleit Bourbon Whiskey

Bulleit Bourbon Whiskey

Bulleit bourbon whiskey comes from a 150-year-old recipe, and it uses high-quality grain mash to produce the best whiskey. The complexity and subtlety of each bottle came from the unique blend of corn, rye, malted barley, yeast, and Kentucky limestone water. 

Because Bulleit Bourbon is a rye whiskey, it is bold and sweet, making a bottle-perfect hot toddy whiskey. It is warm and strong and can stand up the lemon juice and hot water but not strong enough to drink with a tiny sip. 

3. Four Roses Yellow Label

Four Roses Yellow Label

If you are looking for a budget whiskey, check out the Four Roses Yellow Label. It has mellow spice and smooth flavor with a soft and long finish that mixes great with your favorite cocktail.

Bottled at 80 proof, Four Roses Yellow Label has a unique flavor and aroma that you can enjoy whether with a splash of water, on the rocks, or as mixed drinks. It has notes of honey and spices with hints of fresh apple, making it one of the great whiskeys for making cocktails like hot toddies. 

4. Jim Beam Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey

Jim Beam Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey

Jim Beam Kentucky Straight bourbon whiskey, which sticks to their great-great-grandfather’s recipe, is elegant, smooth, and refined, making the spirit a great sipping whiskey. 

Jim Beam is one of the best whiskeys with subtle notes of caramel and vanilla, and its big taste elements can make a great base for a cocktail. It is light-to-medium-bodied whiskey and slightly sweeter than other whiskeys, so it mixes well with hot toddies. 

5. Larceny Kentucky Straight Bourbon 

Larceny Kentucky Straight Bourbon

One way to enjoy a Larceny Kentucky straight bourbon is by mixing it with other ingredients to create wonderful hot toddies. Larceny uses wheat instead of rye spice as the secondary grain in the mash bill, making it a sweeter and softer whiskey. 

Once you open a bottle of Larceny, the scent of fresh bread, toffee, and notes of butterscotch will linger in your nose. It has rich buttery caramel and is sweet, so you don’t need more honey for your hot toddies.

Moreso, it is gently sweet and savory so mixing it with lemon and hot water makes a perfect drink. 

6. Maker’s Mark Bourbon

Maker's Mark Bourbon

Whether you like your whiskey neat or with a mixer, Maker’s Mark is a versatile spirit that you can consume without worrying if it will taste bad. It matches well with cocktails because it has a sweet flavor, and it tastes great with hot toddies. 

Maker’s Mark uses soft red winter wheat as the secondary grain, which is not sharp or bitter, making it a full-flavored easy-to-drink bourbon. It is woody oak, caramel, and vanilla on the nose, and it has a balance of sweetness and fruity essence that will not overpower other flavors. 

7. Rabbit Hole Bourbon

Rabbit Hole Bourbon

If you are looking for a not-so-overpowering bourbon for your hot toddy, you can check out the Rabbit Hole bourbon. The four-grain bourbon is smooth, gentle, sweet, and not too complicated, so it can be your go-to bourbon if you want simple cocktails. 

Tasting the whiskey neat, it has a velvety mouthfeel with notes of toffee and vanilla, so its sweetness pairs well with the ingredients of hot toddies. Moreso, a bottle of Rabbit Hole has citrus notes with a short finish, so it will not linger that much.  

8. Hudson Baby Bourbon

Hudson Baby Bourbon

Hudson Baby Bourbon is a grain-forward and bold straight bourbon whiskey aged in American charred oak barrels. The bourbon contains two grains-corn and malted barley for a rich and bold taste. 

A glass of Hudson Baby bourbon can remind you of the fall day because it has lingering corn, bread, and cashew notes. Moreso, it is one of the best whiskeys that tastes great whether you drink it neat, with ice, or as cocktails. 

9. Wild Turkey 101

Wild Turkey 101

Wild Turkey 101 has a higher proof that is a lot to handle to sip solo, so tone it down with water and make it a hot toddy. Wild Turkey has characteristics of sweet caramel, butterscotch, rye spice, and vanilla that come out when used as a base for cocktails. 

Wild Turkey 101 can be your best bet for bourbon if you want a great whiskey that has a bold and smooth taste. A bottle of Wild Turkey 101 is aged six to eight years in oak casks, giving the whiskey a bold flavor with a citrus finish. 

Read: Wild Turkey Rare Breed Bourbon vs Longbranch

10. Woodford Reserve Bourbon

Woodford Reserve Bourbon

Woodford Reserve bourbon is one of the best whiskeys you can try for a hot toddy. It has a rich, rounded, smooth taste with complex citrus, cocoa, and cinnamon. 

The Kentucky straight bourbon whiskey bottle comprises 200 different flavor notes from oak casks and bold grain.


What’s A Hot Toddy?

A hot toddy is a classic cocktail made from whiskey, water, honey, herbs, and spices, and it is served hot. It is best to drink in cold weather because it helps relieve flu symptoms, sore throat, and colds. 

If you want to relax and experience a hot cocktail, hot toddy can be your go-to option; it will not get you drunk because it has low alcohol content. 

The Best Hot Toddy Cocktail Recipe

The Best Hot Toddy Cocktail Recipe Prep Time: 10 minutes

Total Time: 10 minutes


  • ¾ cup hot water
  • 1.5 oz bourbon whiskey
  • 2 – 3 tablespoons of honey
  • 2 – 3 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1 lemon round
  • 1 cinnamon stick


Bring the water to simmer in a saucepan or teapot, then pour it into a mug. Add the bourbon, two tablespoons of honey, and lemon juice to the warm water, then stir well. Wait until the honey is combined with water, then taste if you need to add more lemon and honey. Top it off with lemon round and cinnamon stick. 

Serving: 1

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

What kind of bourbon is best for a hot toddy?

A solid bourbon with rye forward flavor is ideal for cocktails like a hot toddy. Find any bourbon that has enough character, intensity, and depth to make it enjoyable to drink. 

Will a “bourbon” hot toddy get you drunk?

No, a “bourbon” hot toddy will not get you drunk. It does have alcohol content because of the bourbon, but it is not enough to get you drunk. A hot toddy is meant to be drunk while relaxing, especially in cold weather, because it gives health benefits [1]. 

What bourbon makes you feel warm?

Bourbons with higher proof and rich, spicy flavor profiles are often associated with a warming sensation; expressions like Knob Creek, Booker’s, or Wild Turkey Rare Breed, known for their boldness and complexity, can impart a comforting warmth.

What whisky is good for hot whisky?

For hot whisky or hot toddies, choosing a well-balanced and slightly sweet whisky is recommended; options like Glenfiddich 12-Year-Old or Jameson Irish Whiskey work well, offering a pleasant combination of warmth and flavor to complement the comforting nature of a hot drink.

Is bourbon best warm or cold?

Bourbon is traditionally enjoyed at room temperature or with a couple of ice cubes; while some may appreciate the warming qualities of bourbon in certain cocktails like hot toddies, its full flavor profile is often best experienced when served at a moderate temperature or over ice.

Is bourbon or scotch better for hot toddy?

Both bourbon and Scotch can be used to make a hot toddy, but the choice depends on personal preference; bourbon’s sweet and robust character can complement the honey and citrus elements in a hot toddy, while a peaty Scotch like Laphroaig can add a unique smokiness, offering a different twist to this classic warm cocktail.

Is Jim Beam good for a hot toddy?

Jim Beam, with its approachable flavor profile and slightly sweet notes, can be a good choice for a hot toddy; its smoothness and affordability make it a versatile option for this comforting drink, blending well with honey, lemon, and hot water to create a soothing and delightful beverage.

Does bourbon really help a cold?

While bourbon won’t cure a cold, some people believe that a hot toddy made with bourbon can provide temporary relief from cold symptoms; the warmth of the drink, combined with ingredients like honey and lemon, may soothe a sore throat and offer a comforting sensation, but it doesn’t replace medical treatment.

Is bourbon drink good for a cold?

A bourbon drink, particularly a hot toddy, can be considered good for a cold in terms of providing temporary relief; the warmth of the beverage, along with honey’s soothing properties and the vitamin C from lemon, can offer comfort and ease cold symptoms, but it’s essential to consult a healthcare professional for proper medical advice.

Is it OK for bourbon to get hot?

Bourbon is typically stored at room temperature, and it’s generally fine if it gets slightly warm during storage; however, extreme temperature fluctuations or prolonged exposure to heat can potentially impact its flavor and quality, so it’s advisable to store bourbon in a cool, dark place to maintain its integrity.

What alcohol is good for hot?

Various types of alcohol are suitable for hot drinks, with preferences depending on individual taste; for instance, rum is commonly used in hot buttered rum, whiskey or bourbon in hot toddies, and brandy in warm cocktails like a hot brandy punch, offering a comforting and soothing experience.

What alcohol tastes good hot?

Several alcohols taste good when served hot, each contributing unique flavors to warm beverages; besides whiskey and bourbon in hot toddies, consider spiced rum for a warming kick, Irish cream liqueur for a creamy touch in hot coffee, or mulled wine with red wine and spices for a flavorful and aromatic hot drink.

Key Takeaways

Hot toddies in cold weather are something every bourbon lover looks forward to. It can be your go-to–cocktail option for all the nights you want to chill, but it’s too cold for a refreshing drink.

Now that we narrowed down your choices getting the best bourbon for hot toddy can be more convenient and precise. What’s your favorite bourbon for a hot toddy? We’d love to hear from you, so comment down below. 


  1. Hot Toddy Health Benefits Experts
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