Exclusive Reveal: The 10 Most Incredible Texas Bourbons You Need to Taste Now!

Discover the bold and daring world of Texas Bourbon with our exclusive list of the top 10 must-try bourbons from the Lone Star State. Explore the unique flavors that make Texas whiskey a standout choice for connoisseurs and newcomers alike. Click to experience the spirit of Texas distilled!

The world of whiskey is vast and varied, with the Lone Star State carving out its own distinct niche in the realm of bourbon. Texas bourbon has gained a reputation for its bold flavors and innovative distilling techniques, which are as unique and spirited as Texas itself.

Here we round up the top 10 bourbons produced in Texas, each with its own character and story. Bourbon is a distinctive style of whiskey that’s as American as apple pie. By legal definition, it must be produced in the United States, made from a grain mixture that is at least 51% corn, and aged in new, charred oak barrels, which impart deep flavors and a rich amber color. Bourbon is distilled to no more than 160 (U.S.) proof, and entered into the barrel for aging at no more than 125 proof, and it must be bottled at 80 proof or more. Unlike its whiskey cousins, it has no minimum aging period, but to be called “straight bourbon,” it must age for at least two years. This aging process, along with the fertile soils and pure water sources in key bourbon-producing areas, gives the spirit its characteristic sweetness and robust notes of vanilla, oak, and caramel. The history of bourbon is deeply woven into the American fabric, with its origins dating back to the 18th century, making it a true heritage spirit with a tradition of craftsmanship and a taste that’s enjoyed worldwide.

(1) Garrison Brothers: Small Batch Texas Straight Bourbon

Nestled in the beautiful Hill Country of Hye, Texas, Garrison Brothers Distillery proudly claims the title of the first legal whiskey distillery in Texas. Their Texas Straight Bourbon is a testament to their dedication to craftsmanship. Made from organic corn and pure Hill Country rainwater, this bourbon ages in charred American oak barrels, imparting a smooth, rich flavor with notes of caramel and vanilla.

The intense Texas heat accelerates the aging process, resulting in a complex and mature spirit that’s both bold and velvety on the palate. Every bourbon drinker in Texas knows Garrison Brothers and aligns is name with quality bourbon. It also may be the most expensive if you go for the special editions like Cowboy Bourbon, the Texas Straight Bourbon definitely strikes a balance of quality and value.

(2) Balcones: Baby Blue Corn Whiskey

Balcones Texas Blue Corn Bourbon is a craft whiskey that stands out in the burgeoning field of Texas bourbon for its innovative use of blue corn, a heritage grain that imbues the spirit with a distinctively rich and nutty flavor. This bourbon, produced by Balcones Distilling in Waco, Texas, pushes the envelope of traditional whiskey-making by drawing from the state’s agricultural diversity.

The use of roasted heirloom blue corn not only imparts a deeper, bolder taste but also a robust character that mirrors the Texas landscape. Once distilled, the spirit is aged in charred new American oak barrels, which contribute to its deep amber hue and layers of smoky complexity. The final product is a bourbon that greets the palate with an audacious symphony of flavors: a mélange of chocolate, caramel, and spice, with a smooth finish that lingers like a Texas sunset. This attention to artisanal detail and the bold choice of ingredients has earned Balcones Texas Blue Corn Bourbon accolades and a revered spot in the glasses of bourbon enthusiasts. Each bottle is a testament to Balcones Distilling’s commitment to innovation and quality, solidifying its status as a jewel in the crown of Texas bourbon.

(3) Milam & Greene: Triple Cask Straight Bourbon

Hailing from Blanco, Milam & Greene’s Triple Cask Straight Bourbon is a blend of three whiskies: a Texas bourbon, a Tennessee whiskey, and a Kentucky bourbon. The trio is expertly combined by Master Blender Heather Greene to create a symphony of flavors. With its rich caramel notes, subtle spices, and a hint of fruit, Milam & Greene’s offering is a harmonious representation of what Texas bourbon stands for—innovation and tradition.

Milam & Greene’s technique involves aging their bourbon in new American oak barrels that have been kissed by the intense sun and fluctuating temperatures of the Texas Hill Country. This climate accelerates the maturation process, infusing the whiskey with profound flavors and a deep amber color. Each sip of Milam & Greene Triple Cask Straight Bourbon is an exploration of its rich, multi-regional heritage—a dance of flavors on the palate, culminating in a long and satisfying finish that balances warmth with a bright, crisp edge. It’s this balance and complexity that make Milam & Greene a standout producer, capturing the essence of Texas ingenuity in each bottle and championing the Lone Star State’s burgeoning reputation as a producer of world-class bourbon.

(4) Ironroot Republic: Harbinger XC Straight Bourbon

In the town of Denison, Ironroot Republic distills their Harbinger XC Straight Bourbon, a high-proof expression that showcases the potential of Texas-grown corn varieties. The non-chill-filtered bourbon has a full-bodied flavor profile featuring sweet caramel, spicy rye, and a touch of orange zest, winning over both connoisseurs and casual sippers alike.

Ironroot Republic Distillery is a proud family-owned establishment located in the historic town of Denison, Texas, where they are forging a legacy with their bold and innovative approach to whiskey making. Named in honor of the ironroot trees that are known to thrive in the Texoma region, the distillery is renowned for its Ironroot Republic Texas Straight Bourbon, which is a celebration of local agriculture, utilizing non-GMO corn varieties, including the flavorful Bloody Butcher corn. This corn varietal, along with careful curation of yeasts and a non-chill filtered production process, results in a bourbon that is rich with a full-bodied character and a palate that includes notes of sweet caramel, holiday spices, and a hint of citrus. Each bottle from Ironroot is a statement of quality and dedication to craft distilling, embracing Texas’s terroir to produce whiskies that are both unique and deeply rooted in the Lone Star State’s burgeoning distilling tradition.

(5) Treaty Oak: Ghost Hill Texas Bourbon

Treaty Oak Distilling in Dripping Springs offers Ghost Hill Texas Bourbon, a 100% Texas-grown bourbon. Named after the ranch on which the distillery sits, this bourbon is crafted from a proprietary mash bill and limestone-filtered water, resulting in a distinct terroir-driven flavor with hints of vanilla, oak, and a whisper of citrus.

Beyond the Ghost Hill Texas Bourbon, Treaty Oak Distilling offers an impressive array of bourbons that showcase the brand’s commitment to innovation and the versatility of Texas whiskey. One notable mention is the Red-Handed Bourbon, which brings an out-of-state element into the Texas terroir. This bourbon is a curious blend of sourced whiskeys that are given a unique Texas finish, resulting in a flavor profile that presents the drinker with an intriguing dialogue between the provenance of the bourbon and the character of the Texan aging process.

(6) Still Austin: The Musician Straight Bourbon

Still Austin Whiskey Co., based in the heart of Austin, presents The Musician Straight Bourbon. It’s a high-rye bourbon that hits all the right notes, delivering a spicy kick balanced with sweet caramel and a long, smooth finish. Distilled using locally sourced grains, The Musician embodies the spirit and creativity of the city it calls home.

Still Austin Whiskey Co. distinguishes itself as a grain-to-glass distillery, nestled in the vibrant city of Austin, Texas. This urban distillery is steeped in local charm and committed to sustainability, sourcing their grains from nearby Texas farmers, and carrying out the entire whiskey-making process—from milling and mashing to distilling, barreling, and bottling—right in their South Austin facility. The result is a suite of spirits that not only embody the essence of Austin’s culture but also the terroir of Texas itself. Their lineup, prominently featuring The Musician Straight Bourbon, showcases a commitment to authenticity and quality, earning Still Austin a revered spot among Texas bourbon aficionados. The distillery has become a local landmark, reflecting the artistic spirit of the city and forging a unique identity in the world of American craft spirits.

(7) Ranger Creek: .36 Texas Straight Bourbon

San Antonio’s Ranger Creek Brewing & Distilling blends craftsmanship with a Texan love for big flavors in their .36 Texas Straight Bourbon. This small-batch bourbon, named after the caliber of a Colt revolver, is as bold as it is smooth, with a well-rounded profile featuring hints of toffee, oak, and pepper.

Ranger Creek Brewing & Distilling operates as a combined brewery and distillery, proudly laying claim to the title of “brewstillery” in San Antonio, Texas. This innovative establishment takes a hands-on approach to craft their small-batch Texas bourbon, which is part of their broad portfolio of Texas-made products. Their .36 Texas Straight Bourbon pays homage to the Alamo with its name (“.36” reflects the caliber of a historical Texas Ranger’s revolver) and stands as a testament to Ranger Creek’s dedication to the art of bourbon-making. Each bottle is a product of meticulous attention to detail, from the selection of local ingredients to the traditional pot still distillation process. Ranger Creek’s bourbons are aged in the Texas heat, which imparts a rapid maturation and deep, complex flavors unique to the Texas climate. The distillery itself is a beacon for the craft spirit movement in Texas, offering a true grain-to-glass experience that’s rich in Texas tradition and innovative in its execution.

(8) Yellow Rose: Outlaw Bourbon

Crafted in Houston, Yellow Rose Distilling’s Outlaw Bourbon breaks the mold with its 100% corn mash bill. This bourbon flouts tradition and embraces the outlaw spirit, delivering a rich, buttery profile with a spicy kick, capturing the renegade essence of Texas bourbon.

Located in the heart of Houston, Yellow Rose Distilling stands as a pioneer in the Texas whiskey market, named after the legendary figure of Texas’ fight for independence. This urban distillery is celebrated for producing a range of award-winning spirits, with their Outlaw Bourbon at the forefront, crafted using 100% Texas-grown corn and aged in small American oak barrels. This process enables an accelerated interaction between the whiskey and the wood, creating a rich and full-bodied flavor profile with a distinctive Texas twist. The Outlaw Bourbon embodies the rebellious spirit and pride of the Yellow Rose of Texas, with its bold, smooth, and adventurous taste. Yellow Rose Distilling prides itself on being a leader in innovation and pays homage to the storied past of Texas’ spirited independence, making its mark with every bottle of bourbon as a tribute to the Lone Star State’s history and future in whiskey distillation.

(9) Andalusia Whiskey Co.: Stryker Smoked Bourbon

Andalusia Whiskey Company in Blanco brings something different to the table with their Stryker Smoked Bourbon. This unique spirit is smoked with Texas scrub oak, imparting a distinctive campfire flavor that’s both innovative and deeply rooted in Texas terroir.

Andalusia Whiskey Co., nestled in the Texas Hill Country, is a distillery that captures the essence of the region’s rugged landscape in each bottle of whiskey they craft. Known for their unique take on traditional Scotch techniques, Andalusia provides a Texan twist on whiskey classics. Their Texas bourbon, while not their primary focus which leans towards malt whiskeys, brings a touch of the smokiness characteristic of their Scotch-inspired offerings to the sweeter, corn-rich profile of American bourbon. Their commitment to single malt whiskeys made with 100% malted barley showcases the potential for diversity within Texas’ whiskey scene. As a craft distillery, Andalusia Whiskey Co. meticulously oversees every step of the production process, ensuring a premium, handcrafted spirit that’s rich in flavor and heritage. Each visit to their distillery offers an intimate glimpse into the passion and hard work that goes into creating their distinctive Texas spirits.

(10) Rebecca Creek Small Batch Texas Bourbon

Rebecca Creek Small Batch Bourbon is a testament to the art of craft distilling in the heart of Texas. This meticulously crafted spirit is distilled in limited quantities to ensure superior quality and taste. It’s made from a blend of the finest Texas corn, rye, and malted barley and then aged in charred American oak barrels which impart a complex flavor profile. The bourbon presents a harmonious balance of sweet caramel notes, rich oak undertones, and a hint of vanilla, leading to a smooth and long-lasting finish. Each small batch release is a celebration of the distillery’s commitment to creating a distinctly Texan bourbon that resonates with the character of its local landscape and the authenticity of its makers at Rebecca Creek Distillery.

Rebecca Creek Distillery, nestled in the scenic Texas Hill Country north of San Antonio, offers a harmonious blend of tradition and modernity in their approach to distilling. As one of the largest craft distilleries in North America, they produce a range of spirits, including their fine Texas Bourbon. With a smooth profile that appeals to both new whiskey enthusiasts and seasoned connoisseurs, Rebecca Creek’s Texas Bourbon is crafted from a blend of corn, rye, and barley and is mellowed in charred oak barrels to achieve its golden hue and velvety texture. Their commitment to quality and their community-centric approach have quickly made their name synonymous with top-notch Texas bourbons. Visitors to the distillery can immerse themselves in the brand’s ethos and process, gaining insight into the meticulous craftsmanship that goes into every bottle.

Honorable Mention: Devil’s River Bourbon

As an honorable mention, Devil’s River Bourbon deserves a nod for its contribution to the Texas bourbon scene. Distilled in Dallas, this bourbon is known for its bold character, mingling flavors of honey, oak, and caramel, ending with a fiery finish that’s mellowed by the limestone-filtered water from the Devil’s River itself.

Devil’s River Distillery, named after the pristine and untamed waterway in Southwest Texas, reflects the spirit of its namesake through its bold and robust Texas Bourbon. Located in the bustling city of San Antonio, this distillery prides itself on using the pure, limestone-filtered waters of the Devil’s River for a smoother tasting bourbon. Their small-batch bourbon is made from high-quality grains, including rye for a bit of spice, and is aged in charred new American oak barrels. The result is a whiskey that is rich and full-flavored, with a finish that is both smooth and inviting. With notes of oak, vanilla, and a peppery spice, Devil’s River Bourbon captures the wild essence of the river’s source and the rugged charm of Texas, making it an audacious addition to the state’s growing whiskey landscape.

Changing the Whiskey Game Forever

The bourbons listed above not only celebrate the craftsmanship of Texas distilleries but also capture the essence of the state’s bold and uncompromising spirit. Each distillery brings something unique to the bourbon landscape, from innovative techniques to local ingredients, ensuring that Texas bourbon has a distinct and memorable place in the whiskey world. Whether you prefer your bourbon neat, on the rocks, or as part of a mixed drink, each of these Texas bourbons offers a unique taste of the Lone Star State’s rugged individualism and tradition of excellence.

About the Author

A native of Texas, Ken “Texan” Pierce is a renowned alcohol aficionado with over 15 years of experience in the Texas wine, whiskey, and beer industry. With a vast number of alcohol production resources right in his back yard in the Texas Hill Country, Ken has made it his mission to promote and advance the Texas winemaking, distilling, and brewing industry across the country.  His uncanny ability to identify tasting notes and pairings makes him a respected authority within alcohol enthusiast circles. When he’s not reviewing the latest craft spirits, you can find Ken playing his guitar, trying to sing, and sipping on a Texas libation.

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