Monday, March 12, 2012

Phillips Union Whiskey

It's somewhat rare that I get to review a liquor, as my "starving college student" budget generally prevents me buying many of them. And, when I do have the money to spare at the package store, I often find myself sticking with brands that I have tasted before. Phillips Union Whiskey, however, really jumped out at me among all of the other usual brands. The more modern design of the graphic and the sleek minimalism of the text on the bottle caught my attention immediately amid all of the other busy, embellished, old-fashioned whiskey labels. That's not to say that there is anything wrong with an embellished label, but there is something to be said for a product that makes an effort to be visually more obvious than the competition. So, I decided to give it a try.

And...I'm not really crazy about it. But I think that that has less to do with the whiskey itself and more to do with the fact that I'm not the biggest fan of straight whiskey in general. I like most other varieties of whiskey, particularly bourbon, rye, and Canadian whiskey, but for some reason there has just always been something about the "traditional" product that has never sat right with me. I think that, in some ways, it just tastes sweeter and heavier, and it is a lot harder for me to enjoy outside of certain sorts of cocktails.

That being said, I do think that Phillips Union is a better example of a standard whiskey than what I have had in the past, although I can't really handle much more than an ounce at a time. This may be due to the fact that it is a blend of bourbon and Canadian whiskeys, or the fact that it is one of Phillips Distilling Companies' more premium whiskey offerings. It does have that usual whiskey sweetness, but the taste is very smooth and somewhat more mild and pleasant in comparison to the more harsh flavorings of much of the competition. I actually didn't mind this whiskey as much as others that I've had, and I think that if I had to drink a more standard, general whiskey, this would probably be it. 

But I'd still much rather just have a good bourbon.

Verdict: Worth a try

Purchased: Frugal's Package Store [Greenwood, SC]
Size: 1 Pint [375mL]
Price: $9.99


  1. I agree with you. The packaging is attractive. It even seems to have a slightly pinkish tint. I do like this modern feel. I guess I would try it even though I already know that whiskey + me = instant headache

  2. Phillips Union is actually a blend of canadian whiskey and kentucky bourbon. In fact all bourbon is just whiskey that comes from kentucky. It is straight whiskey. So if you like bourbon then you like straight whiskey because they are the same thing

  3. And a 1/2 pint is a 200 mL bottle in the world of liqour and a 375 mL bottle is considered a pint, so you should change that under size on the review.

  4. From what I understand, a bourbon is a whiskey that is made from a mash consisting of at least 51% corn. This generally gives it a somewhat sweeter a less harsh taste than more "standard" whiskeys. Although most American bourbons are made in Kentucky, the location alone isn't the only factor, as there are bourbons that originate in other parts of the country (and the world, for that matter).

    And you're absolutely right about the size being incorrect. That was just an oversight on my part. I sort of posted this one in a rush. Thanks for pointing out the mistake!