The Michter's US*1 Small Batch Bourbon Review

The Michter's US*1 Small Batch Bourbon Review

Our verdict

There are lots of whiskeys out there. The rise in whiskey is thanks to the upturn and popularity of craft and artisanal distilling. This is both a positive and a negative – the positive being there is a lot more choice, and the negative being that the quality can sometimes be lost. So how does The Michter’s US*1 Small Batch whiskey stack up in this maelstrom of malts? Read on to find out.
michters-US-1-small-batch-bourbon
Scent
Taste
Price

Overall rating

The longer review

The Michter’s US *1 Small Batch bourbon is light and sweet, but when the age of the drink is listed as ‘NAS’ (no age statement), it’s hard to define exactly what you’re getting. It might be a young bourbon, it might have some age to it, but unless you have a very specifically tailored palette, it’s going to be all but impossible to tell. That can put people off; it’s good to know as much as possible about the whiskey you’re drinking to get a full idea of how it all comes together. Having said that, with this particular drink, the flavors could well make up for this lack of information.

Michters us 1 small batch bourbon bottle

History Of The Michter’s US*1 Small Batch Bourbon 

Michter’s Distillery was located in Pennsylvania and may well be the oldest distillery in America, dating back to 1753. In the 1980s, it closed thanks to a bankruptcy issue, so today, the whiskey is actually made in Kentucky at the new Michter’s premises.

The ‘small batch’ bourbon that we’re particularly interested in for this review does indeed come from a small batch of around two dozen barrels, which is why the price might be slightly higher than you would expect compared to other, similar whiskies. Still, many are happy to pay for the Michter’s name. 

Michters us 1 small batch bourbon on glass

Where Is The Michter’s US*1 Small Batch Bourbon Made? 

The Michter’s US*1 Small Batch bourbon is made in Kentucky and might be considered a true ‘Kentucky bourbon’ if such a thing still exists. Michter’s Distillery is a 12.8-acre facility that, in real terms, takes up around 87,000 square feet. This is where all the processing and bottling takes place, but there are some stills in place too. 

How Is The Michter’s US*1 Small Batch Bourbon Made? 

This is a very American whiskey; it’s made from the finest quality American corn that features pride in place on the mash bill for this specific, small-batch bourbon. To ensure that there really is a small batch made, the distilling takes place in a holding tank that can fit no more than 20 barrels’ worth of bourbon inside. 

Michters us 1 small batch bourbon barrel

Tasting notes.

What to expect

If you’re looking for small-batch bourbon and think you’ve found it in The Michter’s US*1 Small Batch Bourbon, it’s all going to come down to the taste, isn’t it? So what can you expect when trying this whiskey on for size? 

Smell

It makes a change to find something that is as simple and straightforward as The Michter’s US*1 Small Batch Bourbon is. There is nothing complex here. Nothing to make you scratch your head as you try to make your brain come up with those familiar smells that you just can’t put your finger on. With this bourbon, you’ll get corn, gain, new oak, and you might just – if you try very hard – get a chewy kind of raisin touch to it all as well. Maybe. But otherwise, it’s a natural, uncomplicated, standard – although pleasant – bourbon. Hurrah. 

Colour 

Light amber is the best way to describe The Michter’s US*1 Small Batch Bourbon color. It’s a mid-range color that doesn’t make you want to rush out and try it, but neither does it make you want to run away and hide from it. It’s an average color that doesn’t add to or detract from the drink itself. 

Michters us 1 small batch bourbon bottles

Taste 

Spicy! That’s the main idea that comes to mind – and taste buds – when trying The Michter’s US*1 Small Batch Bourbon. There is no hint of sweetness here, even though the official tasting notes mention definite fruit flavors. Thankfully, the fact that this is missing the fruit doesn’t mean that it’s lacking overall; in fact, the spicy tones make a nice change from many other young bourbons in the same rough price range, and when you’re looking for something different, this could be a good option. 

How To Drink The Michter’s US*1 Small Batch Bourbon 

The Michter’s US*1 Small Batch Bourbon is best enjoyed on its own, or on the rocks (although some suggest that adding ice dilutes the flavors so much that there is barely anything left, but this could be a batch variation, so you’ll need to try it for yourself to be sure). With the lack of sweetness, it doesn’t need anything else to give it that edge, but adding it to a cocktail could be a mistake; it might sour the drink just a tad too much.

Michters us 1 small batch bourbon barrels

The Whiskey Rocks verdict.

Is it good?

The Michter’s US*1 Small Batch Bourbon is an excellent all-round bourbon, even if it doesn’t have the distinctive oaky heaviness that many top bourbons have. The taste, look, and smell all add up to something subtle, and although this might not be great, it’s by no means terrible. The problem comes with the price – it’s high for what you get, which is possibly why this drink only feels ‘okay,’ not amazing. 

Having said that, we don’t want to give the impression that this is a horrible drink. For those looking for something tangy and spicy without any of the cloying sweetness that can sometimes overpower plenty of other mid-range whiskies, The Mitchter’s US*1 Small Batch Bourbon is an excellent option to go for.

By Ashleigh Cain

Ashleigh is a key part of the editorial team at Whiskey Rocks. You'll often find her either writing educational articles or reviewing the latest artisan whiskeys. Her favorite drink? Ashleigh loves smokey scotches like Laphroaig, but you'll also often find her with an old fashioned in hand.

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