Welcome to Bowtied & Bourboned!

welcomeWhat do academic historians of nineteenth century America do when we aren’t in the archives or writing? Well, we can’t speak for everyone, but we like to think we know our way around a dram of whiskey. Bowtied & Bourboned will put all of these skills to use at once. Unlike lots of other whiskey outlets, Bowtied & Bourboned will combine reviews of mainstream and craft whiskeys (bourbon, rye, corn, malt, white dog — you name it, we’ll try it) based on value and actual taste, not just name power or scarcity, while also featuring new and unique content on the history of the distilling industry and its “stranger than fiction” cast of characters.

B&B Proprietors

MCH | Founder & Co-Editorhulbert headshot

Historical Expertise: 19th century America, Guerrilla Warfare, Memory, Film.

Currently Pouring: High West Bourye (rocks, 1 cube)

Currently Tying: High Cotton, Brooks Brothers.

RCP | Co-Editor Emeritusrobby headshot

Historical Expertise: 19th century America, Civil War, Smuggling and Illicit Trade, Appalachian History.

Currently Pouring: E. H. Taylor, Jr. Small Batch, Neat.

Currently Tying: Southern Proper.

B&B Review Meridian

Overall Rating Scale

9.5 – 10.0 : Mythical Whiskey

9.0 – 9.4 : Exceptional Whiskey (Genuine Top Shelf)

8.5 – 8.9 : Great Whiskey

8.0 – 8.4: Very Good Whiskey

7.5 – 7.9 : Good Whiskey

7.0 – 7.4 : Average Whiskey

6.5 – 6.9 : Slightly Below Average Whiskey

6.0 – 6.4 : Bottom Shelf Whiskey

0.0 – 5.9 : Save Your Money Whiskey

Intangible Ratings

Value : Assessment of whether or not a whiskey is worth its price tag. (I.e., is the single barrel incarnation of a label worth exponentially more than its small batch brother? A bourbon might be very highly rated, but not necessarily a great value if too expensive.)

Drinkability : This is a composite assessment accounting for the whiskey’s smoothness, flavor, sip-ability, and how accessible it might be to less experienced drinkers. (I.e., a lower drinkability isn’t inherently a bad thing, it could just mean this isn’t a particularly good spirit for beginners.)