13 Sipping Whiskeys to Enjoy Neat or On the Rocks

barman pouring whiskey in front of whiskey glass and bottles

Sipping whiskey is a type of whiskey that is meant to be savored and enjoyed slowly, rather than used as a mixer in cocktails. These whiskeys are typically aged for a longer period of time, which allows them to develop complex flavors and aromas that are perfect for sipping.

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If you’re someone who enjoys the rich and complex taste of whiskey and loves to savor your drinks slowly, then sipping whiskey is definitely worth exploring. These whiskeys are perfect for sipping on a chilly evening while reading a book or enjoying a conversation with friends. Whether you prefer your whiskey smooth and mellow or bold and spicy, there’s a sipping whiskey out there that’s sure to delight your taste buds.

Bulleit Bourbon

bulleit bourbon

Bulleit Bourbon stands out due to its approachability. With tasting notes of oak, spice, toffee, and toffee, you get an exciting blend of flavors and aromas when you sip on Bulleit for a while. You can drink it with ice or a splash of water, but it’s best when you sip it neat. Because the bite is light and less harsh than other bourbons, it is an easy drinker.

Knob Creek Single Barrel Reserve Bourbon

Knob Creek Single Barrel Reserve

If you’re a bourbon fan with a little kick that doesn’t overpower your senses, then you need to check out Knob Creek. The single barrel reserve is a smooth, fruity, caramel-like bourbon with a very classy hint of vanilla. Consider having Knob Creek neat if you wish to enjoy the whole experience of the smooth, lingering finish. It’s a balanced bourbon that is great for any occasion.  

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Colonel E.H. Taylor Straight Rye

eh taylor straight rye 750ml bottle with canister

From the masters at Buffalo Trace Distillery comes Colonel E.H. Taylor Straight Rye, a whiskey with all the personality one can imagine. Straight rye tends to have more bite to it than other bourbons on this list, but it’s still an excellent option for sipping. With a spice-forward nose and a balanced finish, you’ll enjoy your experience with the Colonel.

Woodford Reserve Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey

Holiday Bottle

Woodford Reserve is known for producing some of the best bourbon whiskey in the country. The straight bourbon is a classic example of an age-old mash bill that never loses its charm. Don’t be surprised if you get a hint of cocoa in the first sip! Blended with orange, mint, tobacco, and vanilla, this flavor profile is one to remember. Woodford has a heavy nose and a smooth finish that lingers long enough.

Westland Peated Whiskey

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Peated whiskey is an exciting experience. You might think it’s an acquired taste, but it’s a taste that’s easily acquired. Peated whiskey from Westland has a smokey quality that lingers in the mouthfeel and the finish. Yet it’s still smooth and pleasant for sipping neat or on the rocks. The malty notes are balanced nicely with the peat, communicating creativity with each sip. 

Laphroaig Quarter Oak

Laphroaig Quarter Oak

Laphroaig is an Islay single malt scotch whiskey twice-matured in American oak and a specialty Laphroaig quarter cask to create a truly unique sipping experience. This particular scotch has extended contact with the wood, which creates an almost coconut flavor profile in the whiskey. The historic distilling process makes this whiskey one worth trying. Furthermore, its peat aroma and subtly sweet finish are exquisite. 

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High West Campfire Whiskey

brbon hig5

High West produces some of the finest whiskey, with delicious options from rye to bourbon. Their Campfire Whiskey is an unusual option but satisfying. You’ll enjoy this whiskey for its bright, floral nose and the caramel, butterscotch, and smoke flavor that combine effortlessly with a wild combination of other unique profiles like sandalwood and pine resin. 

Rittenhouse Rye


If you’re looking for award-winning rye to add to your collection of sipping whiskey, then Rittenhouse Rye should be on your immediate purchase list. Rittenhouse Rye has a distinctively spicy flavor that makes rye discernable from other whiskeys. It’s a great choice for cocktails but even better for sipping on its own.

Lagavulin 16 Single Malt

Lagavulin 16 Single Malt

Lagavulin has been creating fine liquor for over 200 years. With so much experience and dedication to the craft, it’s no wonder their Isley 16-year single malt makes our list with high marks. The peat smoke is the overwhelming flavor when you enjoy this scotch. It lends a rich and bold mouthfeel with a dry finish that has truly defined Isley scotch for centuries. 

Johnnie Walker Blue Label


Few scotch whiskies have the same tenacity and fame as Johnnie Walker Blue Label. If you want to impress your friends and have the best sipping experience of your life, Johnnie Walker gets you there. Everything about this scotch is bold, with tasting notes of caramel, hazelnuts, and dark chocolate. The finish is smooth, smoky, and lingering. Quite simply, Johnnie Walker is one of the best.

Glenmorangie Signet

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If you’re looking for dessert in a glass, look no further than Glenmorangie Signet. This great whiskey delivers tiramisu flavors and melting chocolate. Whether you serve it on ice or neat, you’ll appreciate the richness of the mouthfeel and the aromatic body. Bringing coffee and whiskey together has never been so grand. 

See also  8 Must-Try Smoky Bourbons

Elijah Craig Barrel Proof Bourbon

Elijah Craig Barrel Proof Bourbon

Sometimes you want a simple bourbon that comes with straightforward flavors and doesn’t put on any airs. That’s precisely what you get with Elijah Craig. The Barrel Proof Bourbon is a sipping whiskey designed to be nothing more than good bourbon. Serve it neat or on ice; either way, you’ll want to sip slowly.

Ardbeg Wee Beastie


The Ardbeg Wee Beastie is an Islay single malt scotch that’s non-chill-filtered, meaning the appearance of this whiskey as it should be: perfect. The Wee Beastie is known for its big flavor that hinges on smoke with a pepper aroma and a mouthfeel that blends chocolate and tar. You’ll want to enjoy the Wee Beastie neat for the best experience.

Please drink responsibly, be fully accountable with your alcohol consumption, and show others respect.

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Paul Kushner

Written by Paul Kushner

Founder and CEO of MyBartender. Graduated from Penn State University. He always had a deep interest in the restaurant and bar industry. His restaurant experience began in 1997 at the age of 14 as a bus boy. By the time he turned 17 he was serving tables, and by 19 he was bartending/bar managing 6-7 nights a week.

In 2012, after a decade and a half of learning all facets of the industry, Paul opened his first restaurant/bar. In 2015, a second location followed, the latter being featured on The Food Network’s Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives.

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