Angel's Envy whiskies are finished in hand-selected barrels. Straight Kentucky bourbon and cask strength whiskies are finished in ruby port casks, and the rye in rum barrels.
Photo: Angel's Envy
Photo: Angel's Envy

Three top-shelf bourbons to wow Dad on Father's Day

Let's face it, more often than not, dear old Dad gets the shaft on Father's Day. It's not your fault: Most fathers shrug off the day, insisting that they neither need nor want any presents. They're lying.

What's unwanted is a useless gift. That's where bourbon comes into play. If your dad has ever expressed an interest in the amber spirit, but you don't know bourbon from brandy, relax and snap up any one of these. Each is a bit out of the ordinary, and guaranteed to bring a smile to his lips with the first sip. You'll find them in most major Atlanta liquor stores.

Angel's Envy Kentucky straight bourbon whiskey, $49.99

Conceived by Wes Henderson and brought to life by his late father, legendary Master Distiller Lincoln Henderson, Angel's Envy is a relative newcomer on the bourbon scene but, happily for fans, it's destined to stay in the game.

The twist in the production of the small batch bourbon is that it's aged from four to six years in new, charred oak barrels but finished in hand-selected barrels. The bourbon and special cask strength are finished in ruby port casks, while the rye is finished in rum barrels, offering multiple layers of lush flavors in each bottle.

"Angel's Envy bourbon appeals to both the bourbon novice and aficionado. It's an exceptionally smooth, nuanced and refined bourbon your dad will enjoy. But don't just take my word for it. Wine Enthusiast magazine awarded Angel's Envy 98 out of 100 points – its highest-ever rating for a bourbon," said Henderson, co-founder/chief innovation officer, Angel's Envy.

You can't talk about Angel's Envy without mentioning the sexy curves of the slim bottle or the pair of subtly sketched wings that grace its back. The exterior of the bottle is just as stellar as what's inside.

Widow Jane straight bourbon whiskey, 8 years, $61.99

Brooklyn is probably not the first location that comes to mind when you think of bourbon, but the historic Red Hook neighborhood is where Widow Jane bourbon is distilled. According to the makers, it takes sweet water from tough rock to make great whiskey. And this spirit benefits from the mineral-rich water from the Widow Jane Limestone Mine in Rosendale, New York. But it gets even more diverse. The whiskey comes from Cacao Prieto, an artisan distillery in Red Hook that is known for producing exquisite bean-to-bar chocolate, along with cacao-based liqueurs and rums.

You'll find the aroma reminiscent of butter, cream and a bit of toffee with a finish of burnt orange and spice. Trust us, Dad will be thrilled to unwrap the Widow Jane.

Jefferson's Reserve Very Small Batch Kentucky straight bourbon, aged 15 years, $46.99

Jefferson's Reserve offers up a medium bodied liquor that combines three different bourbons, resulting in a whiskey that brings to mind a bit of toasted corn, caramel, toffee and oak with a slightly sweet profile. The softly rounded bottle comes emblazoned with a colonial script and a tiny image of Thomas Jefferson's Monticello.

The 15-year aging period promotes a whiskey that's complex, elegant and sophisticated. Jefferson's has been around only since the late 1990s, so this is a chance for Dad to try one of the newer bourbons on the block.

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