July 27, 2023

When it comes to spirits, there are few as iconic and beloved as bourbon and whiskey. But what exactly sets these two apart? Let's dive into the world of distilled beverages and explore the key differences between bourbon and whiskey.

What is Bourbon?

Bourbon is a type of whiskey that is primarily made in the United States. In fact, it is often referred to as "America's Native Spirit." To be legally considered bourbon, the spirit must meet certain criteria:

  • It must be made from a grain mixture that is at least 51% corn.
  • It must be aged in new, charred oak barrels.
  • It must be distilled to no more than 160 proof and entered into the barrel for aging.
  • It must be bottled at a minimum of 80 proof.

These strict regulations ensure that bourbon maintains its distinct flavor profile and quality.

What is Whiskey?

Whiskey, on the other hand, is a broad category of distilled spirits that includes various types such as Scotch, Irish, and Canadian whiskey. The production process for whiskey is similar to bourbon, but there are some key differences:

  • Whiskey can be made from a variety of grains, including barley, corn, rye, and wheat.
  • Unlike bourbon, whiskey is not required to be aged in new barrels or meet specific aging criteria.
  • Each type of whiskey has its own unique production methods and flavor characteristics.

So, while bourbon is a type of whiskey, not all whiskeys can be classified as bourbon.

Fun Fact: Aging Coffee Beans with Bourbon and Whiskey

Now, let's bring some fun into the mix! Did you know that bourbon and whiskey can be used to age coffee beans? It's true! By storing green coffee beans in barrels that previously held bourbon or whiskey, the beans can absorb the flavors and aromas of the spirits, resulting in a unique and delicious coffee experience.

Imagine sipping on a cup of coffee with hints of caramel, vanilla, or smoky oak notes. It's a delightful way to combine the worlds of spirits and coffee.


In summary, bourbon is a specific type of whiskey that must meet certain criteria, including being made primarily from corn and aged in new oak barrels. Whiskey, on the other hand, is a broader category that encompasses various types and production methods.

Whether you're a bourbon enthusiast or a whiskey connoisseur, exploring the nuances and flavors of these spirits is a journey worth embarking on. And if you're feeling adventurous, why not try aging your coffee beans with bourbon or whiskey for a truly unique and flavorful cup of joe?

Shop Bourbon Barrel Coffee: Whiskey Barrel Aged Coffee: Whiskey Morning Coffee

Shop Bourbon Barrel Kcups: Whiskey and Bourbon Barrel Aged Coffee: Single Serve Pods - Whiskey Morning Coffee

Read How to age Coffee Beans in Bourbon Barrels:The difference between whiskey infused and barrel aged coffee - Whiskey Morning Coffee

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