So you’re a Dolphins fan. Or maybe you pull for the Jets or Bengals. Perhaps you’re Florida State alum, a Tennessee Vol, or a once-mighty Trojan. Maybe your fantasy team is just a dumpster fire on top of a graveyard. But whatever the source of your football blues, there’s no balm quite like a great bourbon, which will help you to forgive, forget, and maybe even sleep through a Sunday night or two this fall. So turn-off Red Zone, mute the Twitter mentions, and pour yourself a dram of one these damn fine bourbons, because life, just like the season, is too short to the drink the bad stuff.
2019 Four Roses Limited Edition Small Batch
Best Medicine For: When your team’s franchise quarterback is out indefinitely with a 17-year-old’s make-out virus.
Four Roses has gotten incredible mileage out of their core range, the standard Yellow Label, Small Batch, and Single Barrel. It’s been a successful formula for years, but recently Four Roses have begun building on one of bourbon's best foundations with a series of annual limited editions, continuing this fall with the 2019 Limited Edition Small Batch, a blend of 11, 15, and even 21 year-old bourbons from three of the brand’s 10 signature mash bills (OESK, OESV, and OBSV in this case.) The result is a bright, spicy, composed bourbon that is sure ease the pain of starting Biff McNoname under center for the foreseeable future...provided you’re lucky enough to find a bottle, of course.
Michter's US 1 Toasted Barrel Finish Sour Mash
Best Medicine For: Your best player demanding a trade...in week two.
OK, so the only warm body on your roster wants out and suddenly their agent’s face is plastered all over ESPN morning, noon, and whenever the hell Scott Van Pelt goes on the air. This calls for a glass of Michter’s Toasted Barrel Sour Mash (or two.) Utilizing the sour mash method of adding a percentage of spent mash back into a fresh batch to control acidity levels, the Toasted Barrel Sour Mash is round and sweet like toffee and buttercream, before giving way to wisps of campfire smoke imparted by the custom lightly toasted casks it finishes it’s maturation within. Remind us again, who’s getting traded?
Maker’s Mark Wood Finishing Series 2019: RC6
Best Medicine For: A fantasy team that already looks like a MASH unit.
Maker’s Mark doesn’t do the limited-edition thing often. In fact, their new Wood Finishing Series release marks the first time in the brand’s history they’ve offered one outside of their Loretto, KY HQ. The most infamous spout in bourbon aren’t interested in dipping their toe into the pool, however, opting to dive in headfirst with an experimental new expression aged on 10 virgin oak staves "seasoned" outdoors for a year and a half before being baked in a convection oven. The result is a unique twist on Maker’s Mark classic baking-spice-and-red-fruit palate that is sure to nurse your RB2’s dinged-up meniscus back to full health.
Little Book Chapter 3, "The Road Home"
Best Medicine For: Your team tanking a little too convincingly.
Sure, sure. You want the first pick in the draft, but you were hoping your team would lose every game by a field goal, not 45 points. But thankfully there's the Little Book Chapter 3, which, as you’ve probably guessed from the name, is the third installment of Freddie Noe’s increasingly impressive Little Book blend series. A barrel-proof concoction of exemplary bourbons from each of Beam’s four core Small Batch Bourbon Brands (Booker’s, Baker’s, Basil Hayden’s, and Knobb Creek), The Road Home is a return to the Beam master distiller’s roots and a perfect summation of what makes them the most powerful name in bourbon.
Heaven's Door Tennesse Bourbon
Best Medicine For: Coming up just short…against Georgia State.
Stop us if this one sounds familiar, Vols fans. But while the state of Tennessee football might be in shambles, Tennessee whiskey is thriving thanks to brands like Heaven’s Door and their staple Tennessee Bourbon. The brainchild of Bob Dylan (yes, that one) and master blender Ryan Perry, this non-Kentucky twist boasts a high-rye recipe for a spicy character and is aged years 8 years in American oak. Most notably, however, it forgoes Tennessee whiskey’s trademark Lincoln County charcoal filtering process, allowing the true character of the bourbon—not to mention Bob himself—to shine through.
And now time for bonus whiskey. (Say it with me! Ain't no whiskey like bonus whiskey!!!)
Woodford Reserve Kentucky Straight Wheat Whiskey
Best Medicine For: Your team signing an indefensible scumbag.
OK, we'll level with you. This one isn't technically a bourbon, but the story was too good to pass up. On August 29, 1935, immediately following the fall of Prohibition, the Federal Alcohol Administration Act established the guidelines for four styles of American Straight Whiskey: Bourbon, rye, malt, and wheat. With their new Kentucky Straight Wheat Whiskey, Woodford Reserve have become the first brand with a core line representing each different style, and, thanks to its vintage charm and fruit-forward flavor profile, the Woodford Wheat may just a jumpstart a new trend in American whiskey. Plus, if you clink those rocks loud enough, it might even drown out Antonio Brown's name blasting from your TV 12 hours a day for the next four months.