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Evan Williams Kentucky straight bourbon whiskey

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I am a bourbon man. Give me the sweet, brown, fiery, distilled corn juice over the smoky Scotch or the smooth Irish whisky any day of the week. And the brand I love best is Evan Williams. You know Evan Williams. It's the one with the square bottle and the black label just like Jack Daniel's. Many people think of Evan Williams as inferior, bottom-shelf whiskey. Well, all I can say is: they are entitled to their stupid opinion. 

I've tried fancy bourbons. I have had Pappy Van Winkle a few times, done my rounds with Blantons, used to love Basil Hayden's for a while, even Bulleit and Buffalo Trace used to be frequent residents of my liquor cabinet. However, day to day, week in and week out, I always come back to Evan Williams. 

Bourbon is something I believe is best when it's unrefined, just like something else I love: Italian food. To me there is no use eating "fancy" or gourmet Italian food. It's best when it's simple and hearty, peasant food, like grandma used to make. Same with bourbon. It's best when it's rough, rustic, when it burns the back of your throat a bit, when you can taste the flames charring the oak barrels it was stored in. That's the great thing about bourbon, in my opinion, the sweetness combined with the fire. The more you refine it, the more you try and smooth it out, the further you get away from bourbon's roots as a simple, rugged, back-country liquor, the more you stray from the true soul of bourbon whiskey. 

In particular, Evan Williams is what's called a "sour mash" meaning they re-use parts of the mash to keep it consistent and give it a subtle, "bready" kind of flavor (sour, if you will, as in sour dough) that some people hate but which I think is what makes Evan Williams such a great sipping whiskey. To me, it's what whiskey should taste like, and what I always go back to, time and time again.

Perhaps the best part about Evan Williams is the price. Normally a 750ml bottle of Evan Williams retails for about $16. But this week, during Corona time, my liquor store was selling my precious Evan Williams (really giving it away) for the low, low price of $11.99 (probably because it's not very popular). Yes, you heard me. For the price of a cheap, probably mediocre bottle of wine, which you'll drink in one or two nights, you can have a bottle of Evan Williams which, while I hope you don't drink it in one or two nights (not by yourself at least), will provide you with weeks or even months of happiness. 

Next time you are at the liquors store, looking for a whiskey. I challenge you to step up to the plate and try Evan Williams. Don't judge it by the cost. Don't judge it by the imitation Jack Daniel's looking label (JD sucks compared to Evan Williams anyway). Just judge it by the smile it puts on your face as you taste the sweet caramel and maple flavors and the heat of a quality Kentucky bourbon in your veins. 

Either that or come back and tell me I'm full of crap and that Evan Williams is swill. In the long run, what does it matter, as long as they keep making Evan Williams and as long as I'm alive to drink it. 

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