Louisville, y’all better start watching your back because Nashville is coming for the whiskey crown. Our distilleries are growing fast and producing some of the most interesting and delicious whiskeys available. Small batch whiskey is all the rage now and we’ve got some great ones. Here are five of our favorites.
One of the more unique distillers in Nashville, Corsair experiments with different flavors and ingredients. Some popular whiskey flavors include the Triple Smoke, Quinoa whiskey, and Ryemageddon. They even put out unique seasonal spirits, like the pumpkin spice moonshine. Keep your eye out for unique flavors that are always fun to try.
You know a whiskey is good when there was a time when it outsold Jack Daniel’s. Nelson’s was tragically shut down during Tennessee’s statewide prohibition in 1909 and stayed that way for quite some time. But, in 2009, exactly 100 years after it’s closing, the founder’s great-great-great grandsons, Andy and Charlie Nelson, resurrected Nelson’s Green Brier. Look for Belle Meade Bourbon in Tennessee liquor stores and try their cognac cask finish bourbon. It’s got a great scent of apples and crème brûlée and has hints of vanilla, caramel, and dried orange.
Making small batch whiskey from local grain, Fugitive Spirits is new to Nashville, opening its doors in 2016. Though they are newer than the other distilleries on this list, they are nonetheless making interesting and tasty whiskeys. They operate out of another great distillery, Nashville Craft. A personal favorite is the Tennessee Waltz, a complex whiskey that has a scent of spice and oak and has a caramel and fig taste.
Located a mile from the Tennessee State Capitol, Collier and McKeel make whiskey that tastes classic. There’s no way to describe it other than classic. They’re determined to show just how much effort goes into making their whiskey, with master distiller Mike Williams inking his thumbprint on every label. With a sweet and smoky flavor and a silky smooth finish, Collier and McKeel’s Tennessee Whiskey is definitely worth the higher price tag.
While they make good rums and liqueurs, Prichard’s is known for making true Tennessee whiskey. Recreating a Davidson county whiskey made in the early 1800’s Benjamin Prichard, his descendant Phil opened Prichard’s. Founded in Kelso, TN, Prichard’s opened a second distillery here in Nashville in 2014. The Double Barrelled Bourbon Whiskey is definitely worth a try, but don’t ignore the Peach Mango rum (we like things other than whiskey y’all).
Are there any great local distilleries we might have missed that we need to try? What’s your favorite Nashville whiskey? Let us know in the comments!
About Mike Wargo
Mike Wargo is a food, drink, and travel writer based out of Nashville, TN. Born and raised in South Bend, IN, he relocated to Nashville after graduating Ball State University in 2016. He likes expensive whiskey, cheap food, and the Whiskey, Ink, and Lace warehouse cat, Basil.