How To Build A Better Whiskey Collection This Summer, For Under $400

So, you think you can’t build a fully stocked whiskey bar without taking out a second mortgage on your house? Well, you’re wrong. You can afford bottles of single malt Scotch, blended Scotch, bourbon, rye, Irish, Japanese, and Canadian without breaking the bank.

Sure, you can easily drop hundreds of dollars on that bottle of Pappy Van Winkle you’ve always dreamed of or you can spend under $400 and build yourself a complete swoon-worthy whiskey collection.

Single Malt Scotch – Aberfeldy 12

Fans of Dewar’s already know about the magical liquid that is Aberfeldy. This 12 year old version of the award-winning single malt isn’t top shelf, but that doesn’t matter because it’s pretty darn close. This whisky is smooth and fruity and exceptionally balanced.

Price – $35

Blended Malt Scotch – Monkey Shoulder

You could easily spend a small fortune on blended Scotch, but why not grab a bottle of the favorite Scotch of the bartending community? This smooth, sweet Scotch was designed with mixing in mind. It’s perfect for your favorite cocktail, but is just as good neat or on the rocks.

Price – $30

Bourbon – Woodford Reserve Double Oaked

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Lil bit of American Magic! 🥃🇺🇸

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When many people think of bourbon, they think of its ties to horse racing. One of the best bourbon brands, Woodford Reserve, is smack dab in the middle of horse country in Versailles, Kentucky (pronounced Ver-Sales by locales). This bourbon is made the way the laws of bourbon dictate, but once it’s finished aging it undergoes a second maturation in lightly toasted and charred barrels.

Price – $50

Rye Whiskey – Angel’s Envy Rye

Enthusiasm for rye whiskey has really peaked in the last few years. If you want a good bottle of rye, sometimes you need to pay a little more. Angel’s Envy rye is that bottle. It starts with hints of vanilla and caramel, but ends with peppery spice — all the while maintaining a smoothness that is difficult to find in some rye whiskies.

Price – $90

Irish Whiskey – Red Breast 12

If you aren’t open to new things, you can buy a bottle of Jameson to fill this spot. There’s nothing wrong with that. But, there’s a whole world (or country) of Irish whiskies out there waiting for you. One of the best is Red Breast 12, an award-winning pot still whiskey that will surely turn you into a fan.

Price – $50

Japanese Whisky – Hakushu 12 Year Old

If you don’t know what to expect from a Japanese whisky, look no further than Scotland. That’s because the Japanese style was based on Scotch whisky. Hakashu 12 closely resembles an Islay Scotch. It’s smoky and bold with hints of pine and brewed tea.

Price $80

Canadian Whiskey – Collingwood 21 Year Old Rye

Before rye caught in the US, it was king (and still is) in Canada due to the ability to grow rye. Canada is the Rodney Dangerfield of the whiskey world. And since it gets no respect, you can buy a 21 year-old rye whiskey for only $60.

Price – $60