Our favorite of the Texas-based spirits are the whiskeys, with so many excellent brands to choose from. See them all in Part Four of our ongoing series, Build Your Texas Bar

Build Your Texas Bar: The Whiskeys

Part Four of our Build Your Texas Bar series presents the Texas-based whiskeys. Award-winning brands in this category include Garrison Brothers Distillery, Balcones Distilling, Herman Marshall, Bone Spirits, Yellow Rose Distilling, and Ranger Creek Brewing & Distilling. The newest entry in this category is an impressive single malt by Swift Distillery in Dripping Springs. 

We've given top billing below to these and other brands that are more authentically "Texas" than some of the others. All brands within this photo inventory are based in Texas, so we've proudly photographed them all. But we wanted to give priority to brands that are doing more than blending and bottling whiskey distilled outside of Texas. For a good read on the scope of authenticity among Texas whiskey brands, see Lauren Drewes Daniels' article in the Dallas Observer. We also like Dan Garrison's brief treatment on the subject, Much Ado About Texas Whiskey

Entries that include "Distillery Notes by Texas Spirits Geek" result from our collaboration with Texas spirits expert Andy Creel (aka, the Texas Spirits Geek) to share detailed information he's collected from his personal visits to distilleries across Texas. Clicking on the Distillery Notes entry will take you directly to the Texas Spirits Geek website, where you can read more about the featured brand. You can treat the existence of these notes as additional indicators of the brand's Texas authenticity. 

If you're a producer of Texas whiskey, and we have not included your brand below, or, if you’re a producer and have additions or corrections to this guide, please send us a note to hello@fourstjames.com.

This inventory was last updated November 21, 2014. 

To read other entries in the Build Your Texas Bar eight-part series, follow the links below: 

The Vodkas
The Rums
The Gins
The Agave Spirits
The Specialty Spirits
The Mixers
The Moonshines

Garrison Brothers Texas Straight Bourbon Whiskey
Parent Brand: Garrison Brothers Distillery
Hometown: Hye, Texas
Notable: Garrison Brothers’ Cowboy Bourbon (not shown) was named American Micro Whiskey of the Year by the 2014 Whiskey Bible;
Founder Dan Garrison was featured in our 2013 publication, Texas Works: Products & Portraits of Talent
Distillery Notes by TX Spirits Geek
Website: www.garrisonbros.com

Herman Marshall Texas Rye Whiskey
Parent Brand: Dallas Distilleries
Hometown: Garland, Texas
Notable: Herman Marshall’s Texas Bourbon Whiskey (not shown) was awarded a silver medal in 2013 by the American Distilling Institute 
Kindred Spirits: Herman Marshall Texas Bourbon Whiskey; Herman Marshall Texas Single Malt Whiskey
Distillery Notes by TX Spirits Geek
Website: www.dallasdistilleries.com

Balcones Baby Blue Corn Whiskey
Parent Brand: Balcones Distilling
Hometown: Waco, Texas
Notable: Made from atole, a roasted blue cornmeal; Balcones Distillery is the first two-time recipient of Whisky Magazine’s Craft Whiskey Distillery of the Year (2012 & 2014)
Kindred Spirits: Balcones True Blue Corn Whiskey; Balcones Brimstone Corn Whiskey; Balcones True Blue 100 Proof Corn Whiskey; Balcones Rumble; Balcones Rumble Cask Reserve
Distillery Notes by TX Spirits Geek
Website: www.balconesdistilling.com

Ranger Creek .36 Texas Bourbon Whiskey
Parent Brand: Ranger Creek Brewing & Distilling
Hometown: San Antonio, Texas
Notable: The small bottles represent the small barrels used in Ranger Creek’s limited edition whiskeys; the .36 Texas Bourbon was awarded a gold medal in 2014 by the American Craft Distiller’s Association
Kindred Spirits: Ranger Creek Rimfire Mesquite Smoked Single Malt; Ranger Creek .44 Texas Rye Whiskey
Distillery Notes by TX Spirits Geek
Website: www.drinkrangercreek.com

Fitch’s Goat 100% Corn Whiskey
Parent Brand: Bone Spirits
Hometown: Smithville, Texas
Notable: True farm-to-bottle product using locally sourced grains
Kindred Spirits: Moody June American Dry Gin; Fitch’s Goat Moonshine; Smith’s Premium Vodka
Distillery Notes by TX Spirits Geek
Website: www.bonespirits.com

Swift Single Malt Texas Whiskey
Parent Brand: Swift Distillery
Hometown: Dripping Springs, Texas
Notable: Twice-distilled from 100% Scottish malted barley; finished in Spanish Oloroso Sherry Cask
Distillery Notes by TX Spirits Geek
Website: www.swiftdistillery.com

Yellow Rose Outlaw Bourbon
Parent Brand: Yellow Rose Distilling
Hometown: Houston, Texas
Notable: Winner, San Francisco

World Spirits Competition Double Gold Medal; Winner, Gold Medal and “Best in Class” at the American Distilling Institute 2013 Artisan Competition
Kindred Spirits: Yellow Rose Straight Rye Whiskey; Yellow Rose Blended Whiskey; Yellow Rose Double Barrel Bourbon
Distillery Notes by TX Spirits Geek
Website: www.yellowrosedistilling.com

Rio Brazos Distillery Whistlestop Texas Whiskey
Parent Brand: Rio Brazos Distillery
Hometown: College Station, Texas
Notable: Rare white whiskey made in small batches, using local ingredients
Kindred Spirits: Boxcar Texas Whiskey
Distillery Notes by TX Spirits Geek
Website: www.riobrazosdistillery.com

Red Handed Bourbon Whiskey
Parent Brand: Graham Barnes Distilling dba Treaty Oak Distilling Co. 
Hometown: Austin, Texas
Kindred Spirits: Waterloo Texas-Style Gin; Treaty Oak Barrel Reserve Rum; Starlite Vodka; Waterloo Antique Barrel Reserve Gin; Graham’s Texas Tea
Distillery Notes by TX Spirits Geek
Website: www.treatyoakdistilling.com

Witherspoon’s Texas Straight Bourbon
Parent Brand: Witherspoon Distillery
Hometown: Lewisville, Texas
Kindred Spirits: Bonfire Cinnamon Infused Rum; Witherspoon’s River Rum; Witherspoon’s Single Malt Whiskey
Distillery Notes by TX Spirits Geek
Website: www.witherspoondistillery.com

Jimmy’s Texas Bourbon Whiskey
Parent Brand: Kiepersol Enterprises
Hometown: Tyler, Texas 
Notable: Name for WW II torpedo pilot, hero, and Jacksonville, Texas resident Jimmy Hines
Kindred Spirits: Dirk’s Vodka; Pierre’s Rum
Website: www.jimmysbourbon.com

TX Blended Whiskey
Parent Brand: Firestone & Robertson Distilling Co.
Hometown: Fort Worth, Texas
Notable: Bottle caps are handmade and include leather from vintage cowboy boots; first non-blended bourbon whiskey from F&R expected in 2015
Kindred Spirits: Straight Bourbon (expected 2015)
Website: www.frdistilling.com

Troubadour Bourbon Whiskey
Parent Brand: The Original Texas Legend Distillery
Hometown: Orange, Texas
Kindred Spirits: Troubadour Texas Vodka; Troubadour Blended Whiskey
Website: www.theoriginaltexaslegenddistillery.com

Rebecca Creek Fine Texas Spirit Whiskey
Parent Brand: Rebecca Creek Distillery
Hometown: San Antonio, Texas
Kindred Spirits: Enchanted Rock Peach Vodka; Enchanted Rock Ultra-Premium Vodka
Website: www.rebeccacreekdistillery.com

Whitmeyer’s Texas Peach Flavoured Whiskey
Parent Brand: Whitmeyer’s Distilling Co.
Hometown: Houston, Texas
Notable: Family and veteran owned business
Kindred Spirits: Space City Vodka; Whitmeyer’s Texas Moonshine Whiskey; Whitmeyer’s Texas Single Barrel Straight Bourbon Whiskey

Website: www.whitmeyers.com

Red River Texas Bourbon Whiskey
Parent Brand: JEM Beverage Co.
Hometown: Carrolton, Texas
Kindred Spirits: Western Son Texas Vodka; Southern Son Vodka; South House Moonshine; Stingray Spiced Rum; Brazos Gin
Website: www.jembevco.com

Texas Silver Star Spirit Whiskey
Parent Brand: Trinity River Distillery
Hometown: Fort Worth, Texas
Kindred Spirits: Texas Silver Star Texas Honey
Website: www.silverstarwhiskey.com

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