Buffalo Trace Bourbon Review: Exploring the Flavor Profile and History of this Iconic American Spirit

buffalo trace bourbon review

Buffalo Trace Bourbon is a name that carries a rich and storied legacy in the world of whiskey. Distilled in Kentucky, this bourbon has been recognized for its exceptional quality and flavor profile. Whether you’re a seasoned bourbon enthusiast or new to the world of whiskey, a bottle of Buffalo Trace Bourbon is a must-try. In this comprehensive review, we will delve into the history of this iconic American spirit and explore its flavor profile in detail.

Key Takeaways:

  • Buffalo Trace Bourbon is a highly regarded American whiskey with a rich history.
  • Throughout this review, we will cover the flavor profile, history, and awards of Buffalo Trace Bourbon.
  • Buffalo Trace Bourbon is known for its distinct caramel, vanilla, and oak notes.
  • We will also provide suggestions for how to enjoy Buffalo Trace Bourbon in cocktails and food pairings.
  • Finally, we will discuss limited edition releases and the visitor experience at the Buffalo Trace Distillery in Kentucky.

The History of Buffalo Trace Bourbon

Buffalo Trace Bourbon has a rich history dating back to the late 1700s when American pioneers began to settle in Kentucky. The distillery was first established in 1773 by Hancock Lee, who leased the land to farmer and distiller, Willis Phelps. It was later purchased by Edmund Haynes Taylor Jr in 1870, who revolutionized the industry with his innovative techniques and quality standards. In 1999, the distillery was renamed Buffalo Trace Distillery, paying homage to the herds of buffalo that once roamed the area.

The brand has become a staple of American whiskey, renowned for its smooth taste and complex flavors. The Buffalo Trace Distillery is now a National Historic Landmark and has been continuously operating since its founding, surviving through Prohibition and the Great Depression.

The Legacy of Buffalo Trace Bourbon

Buffalo Trace Bourbon has earned its reputation as one of the top whiskey brands in the world. It has been recognized for its excellence with numerous awards and accolades, including the 2020 Best North American Whiskey award at the International Whisky Competition.

“Buffalo Trace Bourbon is a true masterpiece of the distiller’s art, with a flavor profile that is both complex and approachable, making it a favorite among whiskey enthusiasts worldwide.”

Visiting Buffalo Trace Distillery

For those who want to experience the history and craftsmanship of Buffalo Trace Bourbon firsthand, a visit to the distillery in Frankfort, Kentucky, is a must. The distillery offers tours that take visitors through the entire production process, from the selection of grains to the aging of the spirit. Visitors can also enjoy tastings and purchase exclusive bottlings of Buffalo Trace Bourbon that are only available at the distillery.

Buffalo Trace Bourbon Review Guide

Whether you’re a seasoned whiskey aficionado or a curious beginner, our Buffalo Trace Bourbon review guide can help you navigate the world of this exceptional spirit. From its rich history to its distinct flavor profile, we’ve got you covered. So sit back, pour yourself a glass of Buffalo Trace, and let us be your guide.

The Distillation Process

The distillation process is a crucial step in creating the unique flavors that make Buffalo Trace Bourbon a beloved American spirit. The distillery uses a specific recipe of grains, including corn, rye, and barley malt, in their unique mash bill. This mash is cooked and then fermented using a proprietary yeast strain that has been cultivated for over 100 years.

After fermentation, the mash is distilled twice in copper stills to create a clear, high-proof spirit known as white dog. The white dog is then placed into charred oak barrels, where it undergoes a maturation process of at least two years in order to become bourbon.

The barrels used for aging are also instrumental in developing the signature flavors of Buffalo Trace Bourbon. The barrels are charred to a specific level, which impacts the flavors imparted into the bourbon. The barrels are also rotated during the aging process, allowing the bourbon to come into contact with the different layers of wood and extract different flavors.

Tasting Notes

When sampling Buffalo Trace Bourbon, you will experience a complex flavor profile that starts with a sweet aroma of caramel and vanilla. On the palate, you’ll taste hints of honey and brown sugar, followed by notes of oak and nutmeg. The finish is long and smooth with a subtle spice kick, making it a perfect sipping bourbon.

Buffalo Trace Bourbon Review

Buffalo Trace Bourbon continues to impress whiskey enthusiasts with its exceptional quality and complex flavors. It has received high praise and numerous awards from industry experts, solidifying its reputation as one of the best bourbons available.

Flavor Profile and Tasting Notes

Buffalo Trace Bourbon is renowned for its complex flavors and smooth finish. When savoring this bourbon, you can expect to detect notes of caramel, vanilla, and oak, with a subtle hint of spice on the finish. The combination of these flavors creates a harmonious balance that leaves a lasting impression on the palate.

When tasting Buffalo Trace Bourbon, it’s recommended to take small sips to fully appreciate the flavors. Start by taking in the aroma of the bourbon, noting the vanilla and oak scents. Then, take a small sip and let it settle on your tongue. You’ll immediately notice the sweetness of the caramel, followed by a smooth finish that’s characteristic of the brand.

If you want to enhance the flavors of Buffalo Trace Bourbon, you can add a few drops of water to your glass. This can help open up the flavors and make them more pronounced. Alternatively, you can try savoring it with a single ice cube, which can help mellow the flavors while still maintaining the smooth finish.

Buffalo Trace Bourbon Flavor Chart

Flavor NotesDescription
CaramelSweet notes of caramel and toffee with a long, full finish.
VanillaAromas of vanilla and oak with a hint of leather.
OakDistinct notes of oak with a smooth, mellow finish.
SpiceA subtle hint of spice on the finish, adding complexity to the flavor profile.

Overall, Buffalo Trace Bourbon is a flavorful and versatile spirit that can be enjoyed neat, on the rocks, or in a variety of cocktails. Its complex flavor profile and smooth finish make it a stand-out bourbon that’s sure to impress both seasoned bourbon drinkers and newcomers to the whiskey scene.

Ratings and Awards

When it comes to ratings and awards, Buffalo Trace Bourbon has certainly made a name for itself in the spirits industry.

Double Gold Medal2021San Francisco World Spirits Competition
Best Bourbon2020San Francisco World Spirits Competition
Best Kentucky Bourbon2019New York International Spirits Competition

As you can see from the table above, Buffalo Trace Bourbon has earned numerous accolades over the years. In fact, it has been named “Best Bourbon” multiple times at the San Francisco World Spirits Competition, one of the most prestigious spirits competitions in the world.

These awards and ratings are a testament to the exceptional quality of Buffalo Trace Bourbon. Whether you’re a seasoned bourbon enthusiast or new to the world of whiskey, this brand is a must-try for anyone who appreciates a finely crafted spirit.

Suggested Serving and Pairings

Enjoying Buffalo Trace Bourbon is a sensory experience that can be enhanced by the right serving suggestions and food pairings. Here are some of our top recommendations:

  • Serving: Neat or with a splash of water to release the flavors and aromas.
  • Garnish: A twist of orange peel complements the citrus notes in the bourbon.
  • Glass: A rocks glass or Glencairn glass is perfect for sipping Buffalo Trace Bourbon.

When it comes to food pairings, Buffalo Trace Bourbon’s rich and complex flavors can be matched with a variety of dishes:

FoodPairing Notes
BBQ ribsThe sweetness of the BBQ sauce complements the caramel and vanilla notes in the bourbon.
Chocolate dessertThe richness of the dessert is balanced by the oaky and smoky flavors in the bourbon.
SteakThe charred, meaty flavors of a steak are elevated by the bold and spicy notes in the bourbon.

Next time you enjoy a glass of Buffalo Trace Bourbon, try one of these serving suggestions or food pairings to elevate your overall drinking experience.

Limited Edition Releases

Buffalo Trace Bourbon is not just any drink. It’s a brand that whiskey enthusiasts love, and with good reason. Apart from their classic bourbon, Buffalo Trace Distillery offers a range of limited edition releases that leave a lasting impression on the palate.

In 2021, Buffalo Trace released the long-awaited Blanton’s Gold Edition. The highly sought-after whiskey was bottled at 51.5% ABV, giving it a unique and distinct character. The limited edition Blanton’s Straight From The Barrel was also released, packed with a smooth and velvety flavor, making it perfect for sipping.

The Buffalo Trace Antique Collection, another set of limited editions, has received numerous accolades for its excellent flavor profile and unparalleled quality. The collection includes William Larue Weller, Thomas H. Handy Sazerac Rye, George T. Stagg, Eagle Rare 17 Year, and Sazerac 18 Year, all of which are extremely rare and hard to find.

Our blog offers a comprehensive review of the limited edition releases that Buffalo Trace has to offer, giving you an insight into what makes them unique. We also recommend staying up-to-date with Buffalo Trace Bourbon’s social media pages to stay informed about new releases as they happen.

Cocktails with Buffalo Trace Bourbon

Buffalo Trace Bourbon is a versatile spirit that lends itself well to cocktails. Whether you prefer classic cocktails or want to experiment with new flavors, Buffalo Trace Bourbon is aged to perfection and can be the best base for your next drink. Here are some cocktail recipes that showcase the unique flavors of this iconic American bourbon.

Old Fashioned

“The Old Fashioned is a classic cocktail that highlights the bourbon’s notes of caramel and vanilla. It’s a timeless drink that never goes out of style.”

2 oz Buffalo Trace Bourbon1 tsp sugar2 dashes Angostura bittersOrange peelCherryIceAdd sugar and bitters to a rocks glass, and muddle until sugar is dissolved.Add ice and Buffalo Trace Bourbon to the glass, and stir until chilled.Garnish with an orange peel and cherry, and enjoy!

Mint Julep

“The Mint Julep is a refreshing and aromatic cocktail that’s perfect for hot summer days. The Buffalo Trace Bourbon adds a subtle sweetness to balance the mint and sugar.”

2 oz Buffalo Trace Bourbon1 tsp sugarHandful of fresh mint leavesCrushed iceAdd mint leaves and sugar to a julep cup or rocks glass, and muddle until mint is fragrant.Add crushed ice and Buffalo Trace Bourbon to the glass, and stir until outside of the glass is frosted.Garnish with a fresh mint sprig and enjoy!

Buffalo Trace Sour

“The Buffalo Trace Sour is a perfect balance of sweet and sour, with a creamy foam top. It’s a cocktail that showcases the vanilla and oak notes of the bourbon.”

2 oz Buffalo Trace Bourbon1 oz lemon juice1 oz simple syrup1 egg whiteIceAdd Buffalo Trace Bourbon, lemon juice, simple syrup, and egg white to a cocktail shaker without ice, and shake vigorously for 30 seconds.Add ice to the shaker, and shake again for another 30 seconds.Strain into a rocks glass and garnish with a lemon twist or Luxardo cherry.

These cocktail recipes are just a few examples of how Buffalo Trace Bourbon can elevate your mixology skills. Feel free to experiment with your own creations and share them with friends and family. And as always, drink responsibly.

Distillery Tour and Visitor Experience

If you’re a true whiskey enthusiast, a visit to the Buffalo Trace Distillery is a must. Located in Frankfort, Kentucky, this distillery has been producing some of the finest bourbons in the world since 1775.

During your visit, you can take a tour of the distillery and witness the meticulous craftsmanship that goes into creating each bottle of Buffalo Trace Bourbon. The tour lasts approximately an hour and covers the entire distillation process, from the selection of grains to the aging in oak barrels.

Aside from the tour, there are several other options for visitors to the distillery. You can enjoy a complimentary tasting of some of Buffalo Trace’s most popular bourbons, including Buffalo Trace Bourbon, Eagle Rare Bourbon, EH Taylor Bourbon, George T Stagg Bourbon, the Van Winkle Bourbon line, Elmer T Lee Bourbon, and Blanton’s Single Barrel Bourbon.

If you want a more exclusive experience, you can book a tour of the Buffalo Trace Bourbon Barrel Warehouse, where you’ll get to sample bourbons straight from the barrel and take home a commemorative bottle of Buffalo Trace Bourbon.

The Gift Shop

Before you leave, make sure to stop by the gift shop, where you can purchase a variety of Buffalo Trace Bourbon merchandise, including glassware, apparel, and, of course, bottles of Buffalo Trace Bourbon.

Hours of OperationContact Information
Monday – Saturday: 9:00am – 5:30pm, Sunday: 12:00pm – 4:30pmPhone: 1-800-654-8471, Email: info@buffalotracedistillery.com

If you’re unable to visit the distillery in person, you can still purchase Buffalo Trace Bourbon through their website or from a local liquor store.

  • For more information on tours and visiting the distillery, check out the Buffalo Trace Bourbon review guide.
  • Don’t forget to bring your ID if you plan on drinking on the tour!

Paying Our Tab At The Buffalo Trace Distillery

Buffalo Trace Bourbon is a true gem in the world of whiskey. Its exceptional flavor profile, rich history, and meticulous distillation process make it a brand that every bourbon enthusiast should experience. From the distinct notes of caramel and vanilla to the smooth finish, Buffalo Trace Bourbon is a delight for the palate.

If you’re new to the world of whiskey, Buffalo Trace Bourbon is an excellent place to start. Its approachable yet complex flavor profile will introduce you to the world of bourbon in an unforgettable way. For seasoned bourbon connoisseurs, Buffalo Trace Bourbon is a must-have in any collection.

Whether you prefer to enjoy it neat, on the rocks, or in a cocktail, Buffalo Trace Bourbon offers a versatile spirit that can be enjoyed in a variety of ways. We hope that this review has provided you with valuable insights into the exceptional qualities of this iconic American spirit.

Thank you for joining us on this journey through the world of Buffalo Trace Bourbon. We hope you’ll continue to explore and discover all the wonderful flavors and experiences that this brand has to offer.


What is Buffalo Trace Bourbon?

Buffalo Trace Bourbon is a renowned American whiskey produced at the Buffalo Trace Distillery in Kentucky. It is known for its exceptional craftsmanship and rich flavor profile.

How is Buffalo Trace Bourbon made?

Buffalo Trace Bourbon is made through a meticulous distillation process. It starts with the selection of high-quality grains, followed by mashing, fermentation, and distillation. The bourbon is then aged in charred oak barrels to develop its unique flavors.

What are the tasting notes of Buffalo Trace Bourbon?

Buffalo Trace Bourbon offers a delightful flavor profile with notes of caramel, vanilla, and oak. It has a smooth and rich taste that is enjoyed by whiskey connoisseurs around the world.

Has Buffalo Trace Bourbon received any awards or ratings?

Yes, Buffalo Trace Bourbon has garnered numerous awards and high ratings in the spirits industry. It has been recognized for its exceptional quality and craftsmanship, solidifying its reputation as one of the best bourbons available.

What are some suggested ways to serve Buffalo Trace Bourbon?

Buffalo Trace Bourbon can be enjoyed neat, on the rocks, or in various cocktails. Some popular cocktails with Buffalo Trace Bourbon include the Old Fashioned, Manhattan, and Mint Julep.

Are there any limited edition releases of Buffalo Trace Bourbon?

Yes, Buffalo Trace Bourbon occasionally releases limited edition expressions that are highly sought-after by whiskey enthusiasts. These releases offer unique characteristics and flavors, adding excitement to the Buffalo Trace lineup.

Can I visit the Buffalo Trace Distillery?

Absolutely! The Buffalo Trace Distillery offers a fascinating tour and visitor experience for bourbon lovers. It provides insights into the distillation process, the history of the brand, and an opportunity to sample their exceptional spirits.

Where can I find Buffalo Trace Bourbon for purchase?

Buffalo Trace Bourbon is widely available at liquor stores and online retailers. It is a popular choice among whiskey enthusiasts and can be found in many locations worldwide.

Is Buffalo Trace Bourbon suitable for gifting?

Yes, Buffalo Trace Bourbon makes an excellent gift for bourbon lovers. Its exceptional quality and rich history make it a thoughtful and impressive present for any occasion.

How should I store my bottle of Buffalo Trace Bourbon?

To ensure the best quality and flavor, it is ideal to store your bottle of Buffalo Trace Bourbon in a cool, dark place away from direct sunlight and extreme temperature fluctuations.

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