Difference Between Bourbon and Whiskey

If you are fond of drinking, you better know your drinks well. Many people think that bourbon and whiskey are two entirely different drinks but actually they are not. Putting it simple, every bourbon is a whisky but not every whisky is bourbon. It is the process of making bourbon a bit different, which separates it from conventional whisky and makes it strictly an American drink. The name and label of true bourbon is carried only in America, whilst the traditional whisky is manufactured throughout the world. So you can say the main difference between these two drinks is the history and the location of making.


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    For centuries, whisky has been made out of grains in many countries of the world, with the Irish and Scotch whiskies being the most popular. In 1964, a resolution from Congress was passed, which stated that bourbon is distinctively a US product. Going back in the history, it has come to knowledge that bourbon was first brewed in early 1700’s in Bourbon County, Kentucky. It is from the founding county that this drink got the name Bourbon.

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    Whisky is mainly made from corn, grains and rye. Many blends of whisky are aged to a certain time limit but not all of them. However, straight bourbon is aged by two years, while some special ones are aged for 20 years or even longer. Bourbon must contain at least 51 percent corn and the alcohol limit is not to be exceeded by 80 percent.

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    Kentucky is the largest manufacturing state of bourbon at the present as well, with many other American states also producing this brand of drink. On the contrary, whisky is being manufactured all over the world.

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    Normally, corn whisky is not aged. The longer a whisky is aged, the smoother its taste becomes. However, bourbon must be aged in new charred oak barrels for a minimum of two years before it can be labelled as ‘straight’.

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    Tennessee whisky is the other drink which is distinctively known as a US product and it has very similar features to bourbon. This whisky is aged in sugar maple charcoal barrels and has a very unique taste as compared to other drinks. Jack Daniels is the best known Tennessee whisky all over the world.

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