Bourbon is a special kind of whiskey that is known for its production process and smooth aftertaste.
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Bourbon is American whiskey that’s made from a mash that consists mostly of corn. While bourbon is popular in Kentucky, only 95% of the world’s bourbon is actually made there. However, bourbon can only be produced in the United States or federal standards say that it’s not technically real bourbon
Bourbon cocktails are savory drinks that go well after dinner when you’re looking to unwind from a long day.
The bourbon drinks on this list come in a variety of flavors too, so you will be able to find one that matches your palate.
Bourbon, a timeless American spirit with rich history and depth of flavor, effortlessly serves as the backbone for a wide array of delightful cocktails. Falling under the whiskey umbrella, bourbon’s distinct profile, marked by its base of corn and oak barrel aging, draws in both connoisseurs and novice drinkers alike. In this article, you’ll discover a selection of bourbon cocktails that showcase the versatility and charm of this classic spirit.
Before diving into the concoctions, it’s essential to acquaint yourself with some of the basic principles of mixology and the variety of bourbon offerings available. From high-proof options to those with subtle flavor profiles, understanding the foundation of a good bourbon cocktail will help you appreciate the nuances of each recipe. Additionally, mastering basic techniques such as shaking, stirring, and garnishing will elevate your mixology skills to create visually appealing and balanced drinks.
As you venture through these recipes, remember that experimentation and personal preference are key to crafting your perfect bourbon cocktail. Don’t be afraid to tweak ratios or substitute ingredients to forge your own unique take on these classics. Ultimately, it’s about finding the right balance to fully enjoy and savor these sophisticated bourbon libations.
Whether you have a ton of time to spend or you need a drink quickly, these bourbon mixed drinks are great for any occasion.
You’ll find the best bourbon cocktails in the list below that once you learn the recipe, you can make again and again anytime you want.
So sit back and note your favorite bourbon cocktail recipes below so the next time you need to unwind, you have everything you need to get started.
When fall starts coming around and you crave the taste of spices in your drinks, this bourbon apple cider is the drink for you.
You’ll be taking some apple cider, bourbon, and adding in some spices that will give it a nice kick.
This is a good way to make a spiced rum cocktail even if you don’t have all of those ingredients on hand, because most people already have apple cider and bourbon lying around their house.
You can mix up the ingredients too if you want something that matches your exact palate a little better.
2. Bourbon Sour
The bourbon sour is made with simple ingredients that you probably already have in your kitchen and it’s one of the best bourbon recipes.
The drink itself tastes great and has a nice blend of flavors with the orange peel, lemon juice, sugar, and bourbon all playing their own role.
It is refreshing and nicely sweetened so it is a great cocktail to drink at a bar after work or on your weekend off from school or work.
You’ll want to garnish this one with a couple of cherries on top to give it a great colorful look.
The blackberry bourbon smash is one of the best bourbon drinks. Classic bourbon cocktails like the smash can really be made any time of the year.
It’s tangy and light compared to some of the other darker drinks on this list.
You’ll be using soda water too so it won’t be nearly as heavy as other drinks either.
The color is beautiful and, if you can, add some fresh blackberries as a garnish. You could also throw a little fresh mint in the drink to give it some herbal flavor.
When you’re looking for a high-class drink you can make right at home, try this Boulevardier cocktail.
Bold and flavorful, this is a great drink to sip by the fire or just take an evening stroll with friends.
The bourbon along with simple syrup and orange angostura bitters blend together perfectly to bring out the best flavors of each ingredient.
If you can, try to only add one single giant ice cube instead of crushed ice to the drink. It will help it from becoming too watered down.
The highball is one of the simplest bourbon cocktails you could possibly make.
All you need is bourbon, soda water, and some ice cubes. You could make these all night long and never spend more than a couple of minutes on each one.
It’s one of the best summer bourbon cocktails to bust out when you have some guests over and don’t want to get too fancy with the drinks.
It doesn’t even matter if you use top shelf or bottom shelf whiskey because the flavor is so simple that it will easily win over most people who taste it.
This is the kind of drink that your guests might think you spent a ton of time on, but in reality, it took no time at all.
A sour basically means that you add lemon ingredients to a whiskey base.
In this recipe, bourbon and fresh lemon juice go together well as they balance each other out.
The sour taste is strong but mellows as you sip it as the sweet and bitter flavors blend together as one.
The red wine float on the top of this recipe really makes it appealing and will make you feel fancy in the comfort of your home.
You can’t deny the delicious taste of bourbon and the old fashioned is a great drink to make with it.
The recipe calls for bourbon as well as some other ingredients like bitters, sugar, and an orange peel.
It’s a simple but effective way of making an old fashioned that can be enjoyed by your guests or family any time they want a nice afternoon cocktail.
It’s one of those easy bourbon cocktails that you can make any time and will taste just as good as the last one.
If you really want to make this drink pop, try adding maraschino cherries instead of the regular kind.
They add a bit of rich cherry flavor and taste even better.
You can make a Kentucky mule by using ginger beer instead of regular.
The drink also uses fresh lime juice, bourbon, and simple syrup to bring together the three flavors.
You’ll want to use a high-class or top shelf bourbon so it doesn’t become too watered down from the ginger beer’s strong flavor.
Because this drink has an acidic flavor to it, be sure to use a large ice cube instead of just one to help it not become too watery.
A Manhattan is generally made with rye whiskey but adding in some bourbon gives it another level of flavor.
This is another great drink to make that takes advantage of the fall season because it has a nice spicy profile to it thanks to the cloves and cinnamon syrup.
No matter what time of year you’re drinking this, it will put you in a festive mood with its spiced flavor. You’ll also have an extra kick thanks to the bourbon.
This drink is served in a classic cocktail glass and can be garnished with a maraschino cherry or orange peel.
All you need is a cocktail shaker to make it all happen.
10. Bourbon Sidecar
This drink was made to sip because of the way you serve it in a coupe glass.
However, it is packed with flavor and uses bourbon, triple sec, lemon juice, sugar syrup, and an orange peel to make one great drink.
If you don’t have simple syrup at home you can substitute two parts of regular sugar instead.
It looks just as good as it tastes and you can top it off with a slice of orange peel.
Make sure to fold the peel in half to get a nice spritz of orange zest on the top of the drink to really set it off.
This is one of the best bourbon drink recipes because it looks classy and tastes delicious.
You’ll garnish it with a lemon peel and you can even burn the peel slightly to give it a more savory and smoky flavor.
This is one of the simple bourbon cocktails invented at the height of the gold rush and it became a popular drink because it had such a pleasant taste.
It’s the kind of perfect summer bourbon cocktail that you’ll want when the weather starts heating up.
When you want a bourbon drink but you also want it to be sweet, you need to try this recipe.
It uses lemon juice, simple syrup, and bourbon to bring out the best flavors of each ingredient.
Maple syrup is also added on top of the drink for sweetness. You can make this one whenever you want because it has a great fall flavor profile to it.
This is one of those bourbon mixers that is more tangy and light than a traditional drink so you’ll enjoy this when you want to take it easy for the night.
13. John Collins
Instead of going with the classic Tom Collins cocktail, this recipe calls for bourbon.
Feel free to use a high-class or top shelf bourbon when you make this drink because it has an incredible flavor that only needs the best tasting spirits to bring out its character.
You’ll use soda water to fill out this drink which makes it light and refreshing to drink compared to some of the heavier cocktails on this list.
When you’re wondering what to mix with bourbon, this John Collins drink shows you exactly how to do it.
Our BEST Bourbon Cocktails (+Boulevardier Cocktail)
- 1 oz. Campari
- 1 1/4 oz rye or bourbon whiskey
- 1 oz. sweet vermouth
- Orange twist for garnish
- Add Campari, bourbon, and sweet vermouth to a mixing glass or cocktail shaker.
- Stir until the mixture is chilled well.
- Strain into rocks glasses over ice cubes and garnish with an orange twist.
Organize all the required ingredients.
Enjoy the food.