Basil Hayden Bourbon Review

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Basil Hayden Bourbon from the James B. Beam Distilling Co is an 80 proof high rye bourbon meant to have a more subtle flavor profile. Find out what it's like in our review!

Basil Hayden
Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey
James B Beam Distilling Co
80 Proof
MSRP: $50

Please enjoy our Basil Hayden Bourbon review by Ray Marcano!

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A light bourbon for those who don’t like much burn, but the flavor profile and finish miss the mark


Booker Noe crafted Basil Hayden Bourbon in 1992 to produce a more subtle but tasty bourbon. The mash bill pays homage to the one created by Meredith Basil Hayden in 1792, who used a high-rye recipe. This bourbon was meant to offer a “refined, approachable taste profile.” Basil Hayden Bourbon honors both men and their contributions.

Basil Hayden Bourbon Review Front Label
Front Label – Basil Hayden Bourbon Review
Mash Bill

Corn: 63%
Rye: 27%
Malted Barley: 10%

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Tasting Notes

Let’s taste it:

🛌 Rested for 15 minutes in a Glencairn glass
👉Nose: Vanilla, dried fruit, oak
👉Taste: Vanilla, honey, citrus
👉Finish: Honey, oak

Side Label
Side Label
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Basil Hayden is supposed to offer customers a subtle bourbon that appeals to those who want a light yet tasty pour. So this presents a conundrum. Serious bourbon drinkers, especially those that like a richer and deeper drink that showcases a variety of flavors, will find this boring. It has a very short finish and little character. Entry-level drinkers will be okay with it.

Neck Label
Neck Label
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Basil Hayden Bourbon would be okay, but the $50 price point doesn’t match the quality. There are plenty of bourbons that cost nearly half the price with twice the flavor. I have a bottle in my collection just because. I had a glass for this review and won’t for a while.

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We hope you have enjoyed our Basil Hayden Bourbon review by Ray Marcano. Ray publishes a free monthly newsletter, The Bourbon Resource. You can subscribe here. If you would like to learn more about one of the Basil Hayden Special Releases, check out our Basil Hayden Toast Review!

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Ray Marcano
Ray Marcano
Articles: 26
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