So what’s the best selling bourbon in the world? According to data compiled by The Spirits Business for world-wide liquor case sales for 2020, the number one selling bourbon (brand) in the world is Jim Beam, which is not so closely followed by Evan Williams. Then it is Maker’s Mark, Bulleit, Wild Turkey and Woodford. (Source vinepair.com)
How Much Bourbon Did They Sell?
While other expressions are included in the tally, Jim Beam 80 proof “White Label” and Evan Williams 86 Proof “Black Label” likely account for the lion’s share of sales for each brand. The Jim Beam line racked up 10.7 million (9 liter) cases in 2020 compared to Evan Williams’ 3 million cases. So, Beam has quite the lead. However, both still lag behind the overall leader in the American whiskey category. That title belongs to Jack Daniel’s with 12.3 million cases sold. Surprisingly, JD’s total was actually down from 13.4 million cases the preceding year. So, even though Jack Daniel’s is technically bourbon, since it considers itself a Tennessee Whiskey, that leaves Jim Beam the worldwide leader in the bourbon category.
Things Are A Little Different Over At Drizly
From a different perspective, Fred Minnick’s report on bourbon sales based on data from Drizly tells a bit of a different story. However, the Drizly data is based on the dollar value of bourbon sold, not the volume. The Drizly data is also based on Drizly’s own sales, which of course reflects a certain demographic and only includes stores in the Drizly network. So that data has inherent bias and is only marginally comparable to The Spirits Business’ data. But, it’s interesting none the less. For the 2nd quarter of 2021 the top 5 bourbons were: Bulleit, Maker’s, Woodford, Jim Beam and Basil Hayden. Evan Williams was 7th.
For Drizly’s whiskey sales overall, bevalcinsights.com reports (also using Drizly’s data) that for 2020, Bulleit Bourbon topped the list. It was followed by Jameson, Maker’s, Jack & Woodford. Fireball came in 8th overall, so there’s a little insight into Drizly’s customer base, to put things in perspective.
What About The Best Selling Whiskey in the World?
So, we’ve looked at the best selling bourbon in the world and the best selling American whiskey in the world. When looking at the overall world whiskey (or more appropriately for this section, whisky) sales in general, the numbers tell a different story. The leading whiskey brands worldwide by volume are overwhelmingly not from the US. In fact, they are probably brands that most Americans have never heard of, and also include spirits that would not necessarily quality as whiskey in the US or UK. Nonetheless, their sales completely overshadow the sales volumes of the largest American brands.
The top 10 whiskey brands worldwide in 2020 were (numbers are sales in millions of 9 liter cases): McDowells No 1 (India 25.7), Imperial Blue (India 21.3), Officer’s Choice (India 20.8), Royal Stag (India 18.5), Johnnie Walker (Scotland 14.1), Jack Daniels (USA 12.3), Jim Beam (USA 10.7), Haywards Fine (India 9.7), 8 PM (India 10), Crown Royal (Canada 8.1), Jameson (Ireland 7.7). Believe it or not, most of those numbers were down considerably from the prior year. (Based on Statista.com and TheSpiritsBusiness.com)
Now, Back to the Best Selling Bourbon
So, back to the best selling bourbon in the world: Jim Beam and Evan Williams. Are you a fan of these bourbons? Check out my Jim Beam Bourbon review and stay tuned for my Evan Williams Bourbon review, coming soon! Cheers!🥃
Would you like to learn more about distilleries and bourbon? Are you planning a trip to Kentucky Distilleries? Maybe you would like to live the bourbon life vicariously through us?🙂 If any of these are true, then check out BourbonObsessed.com today!