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What is The Smoothest Whiskey To Drink? 15 Best For 2024

What Is The Smoothest Whiskey

Last Updated on February 23, 2024 by Lydia Martin

Are you a fan of whiskey’s intense and bold flavors or one of those whiskey drinkers that enjoy drinking it neat?

If you’ve answered yes for both, then a smooth whiskey is perfect for you!

But what is the smoothest whiskey? We’re here to help you out.  

Top 15 Smoothest Whiskey You Can Drink Straight 

1. Auchentoshan 21 Year Old

Auchentoshan 21 Year Old on desk

Average Price: Roughly $239.99 (Total Wine), also available for delivery (Caskers)

Alcohol Content: 43%

Why We Like It:

This single malt whisky has been triple-distilled and aged in American and Spanish sherry barrels for over two decades.

It’s filled with flavors of gooseberry, honey, and creamy vanilla. 

At first sip, you can get the light chocolate and green fruit taste with hints of old oak and sweets. Its finish is long-lasting with a real depth of character. 

2. Balvenie 14 Year Old Caribbean Cask

Balvenie 14 Year Old Caribbean Cask on desk

Average Price: Roughly $76.99 (Total Wine), also available for delivery (Caskers)

Alcohol Content: 43%

Why We Like It:

The Balvenie Caribbean Cask is a 14-year-old single malt whisky aged in traditional oak barrels.

It features rich, creamy, and sweet toffee with hints of fresh fruits on the nose. 

Also, this spirit features vanilla and sweet oak with fruity notes as you drink forward. You’ll surely love its soft and lingering finish– ideal for drinking whiskey neat

3. Bushmills 21 Year Old

Bushmills 21 Year Old on desk

Average Price: Roughly $279.99 (Caskers), available for gifting (Brobasket)

Alcohol Content: 40%

Why We Like It:

Bushmills 21-Year-Old is an Irish whiskey aged in former Oloroso Sherry casks and Bourbon-seasoned barrels for a minimum of 19 years.

The tasting notes boast dark chocolate, nuts, toffee, and raisins. You can expect sweet, mint, and syrupy pipe tobacco on the finish.

We find it hard to get this excellent bottle as this is produced in limited numbers. 

4. Crown Royal

Crown Royal on desk with glass

Average Price: Roughly $18.99 (Total Wine), also available for delivery (Caskers)

Alcohol Content: 40%

Why We Like It:

This classic Canadian whisky is one of the highly recommended spirits if you’re looking for a smooth and more traditional whiskey.

It is versatile and ideal for drinking straight, neat, or on the rocks, perfect for cocktails.

On the nose, it features caramel and light vanilla note. It offers an elegant bouquet with undertones of lemon zest and pound cake.

You’ll love its long finish complemented with spice, toasted oak, and chocolate. 

Read: Our Recommended Vanilla Whiskey

5. Glen Moray Elgin Classic

Glen Moray with box on table

Average Price: Roughly $29.99 (Caskers), available for delivery via Flaviar

Alcohol Content: 40%

Why We Like It:

This medium bright gold whisky features light, fresh, nutty, and fruity on the nose.

On the palate, you can get the flavors of gentle oak with citrus, lemon sponge, walnut, and grist. Then the tangy citrus and spicy fruitcake will linger on the finish. 

We recommend putting a drop of plain water to make its flavors come out even more.

6. Glenlivet 12 Year Old

Glenlivet 12 Year Old on desk with glass

Average Price: Roughly $32.99 (Total Wine)

Alcohol Content: 40%

Why We Like It:

This Glenlivet 12-year-old double-matured single malt Scotch whisky from Glenlivet distillery is aged in American oak barrels. It imparts notes of sweetness and gives it its distinctive taste.

With a mash bill of malted barley, this single malt whisky has a rich and creamy palate with a smooth finish. 

Scotch whisky is not just another beverage. It is crafted with passion by a passionate group of people for an equally passionate group of followers.

– Simon Brooking, Beam Suntory Master Scotch Ambassador & International Whiskey Expert 

Its delicate balance of dried apple and pineapple notes makes it a perfect gift for any special occasion or to treat yourself as an everyday dram to drink straight. 

7. Glenmorangie 18 Year Old Extremely Rare

Glenmorangie 18 Year Old with box on table

Average Price: Roughly $119.99 (Total Wine), also available for delivery (Casker)

Alcohol Content: 43%

Why We Like It:

This 18-year-old Scotch whisky was made from American white oak and Oloroso sherry casks.

It has a thick, fruity, and creamy flavor with the beautiful and elegant bottle, making it look prestigious. 

The palate is tropical and creamy with hints of butterscotch, peaches, and yogurt, which may spice up your drinking whiskey experience.

Then its finish features tangy oak and grapefruit with plenty of caramelized dark sugar on top.

8. George Dickel Bottled In Bond

George Dickel on desk with glass

Average Price: Roughly $45.99 (Total Wine), also available for delivery (Casker)

Alcohol Content: 50%

Why We Like It:

George Dickel Bottled in Bond is a Tennessee whisky perfect for drinking straight. You can expect the many flavors resulting from its 11-year aging process.

It has a distinct scent that can be identified by the presence of candied pecans.

This fruit drink has a distinctive flavor with a combination of cinnamon spice, blood orange, and honey.  

9. Jameson Irish Whiskey

Jameson Irish Whiskey on table with cocktail and ice cream

Average Price: Roughly $18.99 (Total Wine), available at Brobasket

Alcohol Content: 40%

Why We Like It:

Jameson, a world leader in Irish whiskey, is a traditional pot-still and grain spirit aged in American oak barrels.

You can expect a light floral fragrance with spicy wood, freshly cut hay, and sweet notes as you drink straight. 

The taste boasts a perfect balance of spiciness and nutty notes with hints of sherry, giving it a smooth and versatile flavor.

10. Knappogue Castle 1995

Knappogue Castle 1995 with box on desk

Average Price: Roughly $94.99 (Total Wine), also available for delivery (Casker)

Alcohol Content: 40%

Why We Like It:

The whiskey is very aromatic with interesting notes of baked apple, barley sugar, honey, and boiled sweets.

It also features a touch of pepper, caramel, and oak. 

The palate boasts creamy sweetness with tropical fruit, biscuits, berry compote, and malted barley. The medium to short finish has notes of spice and dried fruits.  

11. Laphroaig 10 Year Old

Laphroaig 10 Year Old on table with glass

Average Price: Roughly $39.99 (Total Wine), also available for delivery (Casker)

Alcohol Content: 43%

Why We Like It:

This smooth whisky from Laphroaig Distillery possesses the flavors of peat smoke and salt.

The smoky aroma gives this drink a unique feel with hints of seaweed and sweetness. You’ll be surprised by its sweetness and its long and lingering finish. 

This is a staple choice if you’re new to Scottish whisky.

The rich flavor and character of this drink make it an ideal choice for both novices and seasoned fans.

12. Redbreast 12 Year Old

Redbreast 12 Year Old on desk with glass

Average Price: Roughly $54.99 (Total Wine)

Alcohol Content: 40%

Why We Like It:

This best-selling single-pot whiskey features the traditional blend’s complex flavors.

This cask-strength whiskey features high alcohol content, adding intensity to its flavors. 

This drink is made from malted and unmalted barley and boasts a spicy and fruity palate with toasted barley and wood notes.

The balance of spice, sweetness, and toasted notes, makes a silky smooth whiskey with satisfying long, complex flavors that linger on the mouth. 

13. The GlenDronach Allardice 

The GlenDronach Allardice with box on table

Average Price: Roughly $166.99 (Casker)

Alcohol Content: 46%

Why We Like It:

If you’re a fan of fruity notes, the GlenDronach Allardice is for you. This Scotch whisky has been aged for 18 years and has a variety of flavors such as pineapple, rum, and brown sugar. 

It’s been stored in Spanish Oloroso sherry casks for a creamy, smooth, and consistent taste.

14. Tomintoul 14 Year Old

Tomintoul 14 Year Old on desk with box and glass

Average Price: Roughly $61.99 (Total Wine)

Alcohol Content: 46%

Why We Like It:

The natural environment and the smooth ingredients used in Tomintoul 14 Year Old make it an ideal choice if you seek a gentle and smooth experience.

It has an inviting aroma full of sweetness with hints of orchard fruits and creme brulee. 

We tasted some almonds mixed with Danish cinnamon, citrus oil, and oat biscuits on the palate.

Also, we enjoyed the warming, toasty layers of hazelnuts, mocha, and fresh grassy highlights on the finish. 

15. Woodford Reserve Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey

Woodford Reserve on table with glass

Average Price: Roughly $35.99 (Total Wine)

Alcohol Content: 45.2%

Why We Like It:

When it comes to the smoothest whiskeys, no one would forget the Woodford Reserve American whiskey.

Woodford Reserve distillery introduces this unique whiskey blend featuring over 200 distinct flavor notes, including bold grain, wood, sweet aromatics, and fruit and floral notes.

The finish is silky smooth, with a creamy feeling at first and a lingering warmth as it develops.

Read:

What Makes Whiskey Smooth? 

Whiskey can be smooth due to its soft texture, sweet flavor, the grains used for distillation, and the blending process.

Also, high-proof whiskeys are known to achieve lightness. But, expect a strong alcohol content.  

Also, maturation [1] and filtration are essential factors that make a whiskey smooth. For instance, if whiskey is aged in oak casks, it becomes softer as it ages. 

How To Drink It

How To Drink It

Choose Your Whiskey Glass

Choose a not-so-wide glass to contain the aroma to fully enjoy your drinking whiskey experience.

We suggest using a Glencairn Crystal whiskey glass [2] as it can perfectly hold the spirit’s smell. You can also get suggestions from a whiskey sommelier if you like. 

Swirl The Whiskey

whiskey bottle and whiskey glasses

After pouring some whiskey into the glass, carefully swirl it to prevent it from getting spilled. This helps enhance the drink’s flavor and prevents it from getting too wet.

Don’t Add Ice

Don’t dilute your drink with water or ice if you want to drink straight. Instead, use smooth whiskey or any other type of liquor that you have picked.

Read: Hennessy Whisky vs Crown Royal

Let It Rest 

pouring whiskey in a glass

After stirring, let the drink rest for a couple of minutes to allow the flavors to blend and enhance the experience.

Take A Sip

After about 10 minutes, take a sniff. If you can still smell alcohol, it’s normal. Then, open your mouth and try to breathe in. You’ll taste different types of fruit and spices.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Which type of whiskey is smoothest?

Blended whiskey is the smoothest because, like blended scotch, it’s made by mixing malt whiskey and grain whiskey. The result is a more approachable and smooth spirit that most drinkers recognize.

What is the smoothest whiskey for beginners?

The smoothest whiskey for beginners is the Auchentoshan 21-Year-Old. Its savory flavor with fruity, oak, and chocolate is perfect for beginners, whose not accustomed to strong spices. 

What is the smoothest whiskey under $50?

George Dickel BiB is the smoothest whiskey under $50. For $45.99 you’ll get to taste its complex, rich, and bold-tasting notes.

What is the smoothest whiskey to drink straight?

The smoothest whiskey to drink straight often depends on personal taste, but options like Glenfiddich 12 Year Old Single Malt Scotch, Jameson Irish Whiskey, or Woodford Reserve Bourbon are frequently considered smooth choices due to their well-balanced and approachable flavor profiles.

What’s the easiest whiskey to drink?

For those new to whiskey, or those who prefer an easy-drinking option, brands like Buffalo Trace Bourbon, Maker’s Mark, or Bushmills Original Irish Whiskey are known for their smoothness and milder flavor profiles, making them accessible and enjoyable for a wide range of palates.

What is the smoothest non-burning whiskey?

Smoothness in whiskey is often associated with a lack of harsh or burning sensations, and brands like Crown Royal Canadian Whisky, Dalwhinnie 15 Year Old Single Malt Scotch, or Basil Hayden’s Bourbon are recognized for their gentle and smooth finishes, providing a pleasant sipping experience without overpowering heat.

Which whisky has the best taste?

Determining the whisky with the best taste is highly subjective, as individual preferences vary; however, whiskies like Lagavulin 16 Year Old Single Malt Scotch, Glenlivet 18 Year Old Single Malt Scotch, or Pappy Van Winkle’s Family Reserve Bourbon are often praised for their complex and rich flavor profiles, earning them acclaim among whisky enthusiasts.

What is a real smooth whiskey?

A real smooth whiskey typically refers to a spirit that goes down easily without a harsh or overwhelming sensation; brands like Redbreast 12 Year Old Irish Whiskey, Blanton’s Single Barrel Bourbon, or Glenmorangie 10 Year Old Single Malt Scotch are often recognized for their real smoothness, offering a delightful and velvety drinking experience that appeals to those seeking a gentle and enjoyable sip.

Is Jack Daniel’s a smooth whiskey?

Jack Daniel’s is often considered a smooth whiskey, known for its mellow and approachable flavor profile; its charcoal mellowing process, known as the Lincoln County Process, contributes to its smoothness by filtering the whiskey through sugar maple charcoal before aging.

Is Chivas Regal a good whisky?

Chivas Regal is widely regarded as a good whisky, appreciated for its smooth and well-balanced blend of malt and grain whiskies; its 12, 18, and 25-year-old expressions are particularly well-received, offering a range of complexity and depth that caters to various preferences.

What is considered the best whiskey?

Determining the best whiskey is subjective and depends on personal taste preferences; however, whiskies like Macallan 18 Year Old Sherry Oak, Pappy Van Winkle’s Family Reserve Bourbon, or Yamazaki 18 Year Old Single Malt Japanese Whisky are often lauded for their exceptional quality and distinct flavor profiles, earning them recognition among the best in the world.

Is Glenfiddich a good whisky?

Glenfiddich is widely recognized as a good whisky, celebrated for its consistently high quality and innovation in the single malt Scotch category; expressions such as Glenfiddich 12 Year Old and Glenfiddich 18 Year Old are well-regarded for their smoothness, fruitiness, and complexity.

Which whiskey has no smell?

Whiskey inherently possesses aromas and flavors derived from the distillation and aging process, so finding one with absolutely no smell is challenging; however, lighter and more delicate whiskies like Auchentoshan American Oak, or some expressions of Jameson Irish Whiskey, may have milder aromas compared to heavily peated or robust whiskies, providing a relatively subtle olfactory experience.

So, What Is The Smoothest Whiskey?

Auchentoshan 21-Year Old is the smoothest whiskey to drink. It is filled with complex flavor and a long-lasting finish with real depth of character.

Also, Woodford Reserve Straight Bourbon and Redbreast are a must-try. Both possess the quality, texture, and character a smooth whiskey should have. 

Reference

  1. https://study.com/academy/lesson/what-is-maturation-definition-theory-process.html
  2. https://www.liquor.com/glencairn-whisky-glasses-review-for-serious-whiskey-lovers-5191133
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