Whisky Advocate Top 20 List

Whisky Advocate Top 20 List - De Wine Spot | DWS - Drams/Whiskey, Wines, Sake

Ilya Dorfman |

Each year, Whisky Advocate Buying Guide reviewers collectively sample hundreds of whiskies. These include rare and extremely limited releases, as well as new and emerging labels that will find their way to shelves across the nation. To determine the Top 20, folks at the establishment begin by looking only at whiskies that rated "outstanding" (90 points or higher on Whisky Advocate's 100-point scale). However, the Top 20 is not simply a collection of highest-rated whiskies, because many of those are so limited they would be impossible for most readers to locate or purchase. Therefore, in addition to quality (based on score), the selection also prioritizes value (based on price) and availability.

An important step in gauging the true merit of these whiskies is blind tasting review by a panel of international reviewers. The review panel tasted the eligible whiskies in a series of blind tasting flights to arrive at the final list. The panel did not know the identity of the whiskies being tasted—not their producer, country of origin, age, nor price. The average rating from the blind tasting panel supersedes the original Buying Guide rating. The individual reviewer rating will remain noted in the Buying Guide for the record. The final decision for placement considers average score, price, and availability.

In short, the Top 20 is a selection of whiskies worthy of your attention. The list includes great values that might otherwise be overlooked, whiskies that are best in class for their style, and highly accomplished bottles you should be looking for. Most importantly, each of these whiskies generates excitement and marks a highlight across a year of tasting.

Note: If you are interested in whikies on this list and don't see a link to it, talk to us. We might be able to find you a bottle.

2022 2021 2020 2019 2018 2017


Whiskey Advocate Top 20 Whiskies Of 2023 | De Wine Spot
  1. Glenglassaugh Sandend
  2. Highland Park Cask Strength (Batch 4)
  3. Westland Garryana (No. 8)
  4. Little Book Chapter 7 “In Retrospect”
  5. Wild Turkey Master's Keep Voyage
  6. Maker's Mark Cellar Aged 2023
  7. Dewar's Double Double 21 year old Mizunara Oak
  8. Glenmorangie A Tale of the Forest
  9. Bardstown Bourbon Collaborative Series: Foursquare
  10. GlenDronach Cask Strength (Batch 12)
  11. Barrell Craft Spirits 6 year old Cask Strength (Batch 035)
  12. Blue Run Trifecta
  13. Hemingway Signature Edition
  14. Glenfiddich 12 year old Amontillado Sherry Cask Finish
  15. Old Elk Port Finished
  16. Green Spot Quails' Gate
  17. Crown Royal Noble Collection Barley Edition
  18. Teeling Wonders of Wood Second Edition Virgin Portuguese Oak
  19. Fuji
  20. Ezra Brooks 99


Whiskey Advocate Top 20 Whiskies Of 2022 | De Wine Spot
  1. Jack Daniel's Bonded
  2. Redbreast Kentucky Oak Edition
  3. Barrell Vantage
  4. Dewar's 12 Years Double Aged
  5. Westward Cask Strength American Single Malt
  6. Midleton Very Rare (2022)
  7. Blue Note Juke Joint Uncut
  8. Limavady Single Barrel (0039)
  9. Bruichladdich 8 year old Islay Barley 2013
  10. Nelson Bros. Reserve
  11. Sweetens Cove Kennessee Toasted Sugar Maplewood Finished
  12. Tomintoul Cigar Malt Oloroso Sherry Cask Finish
  13. Nikka Miyagikyo Peated
  14. Blackened Rye The Lightning Double Cask Madeira and Rum Finished
  15. Bardstown Bourbon Company Collaborative Series Plantation Rum Barrel Finished
  16. Bushmills 12 year old
  17. Indri Trini The Three Wood
  18. Hardin's Creek Colonel James B. Beam
  19. Teeling Wonders of Wood Virgin Chinkapin Oak
  20. Craigellachie 13 year old Bas Armagnac Finished



Whiskey Advocate Top 20 Whiskies Of 2021 | De Wine Spot


  1. Lagavulin 11 year old Offerman Edition: Guinness Cask Finish
  2. Maker’s Mark Wood Finishing Series 2021 (FAE-01)
  3. Teeling Blackpitts
  4. Jack Daniel’s 10 Year Old
  5. George Dickel 8 year old
  6. High Coast Hav
  7. Rampur Asava
  8. Kentucky Peerless Double Oak
  9. Compass Box No Name No. 3
  10. Wild Turkey Master’s Keep One
  11. Port Charlotte PAC:01 2011
  12. Ardnamurchan (AD/03.21:02)
  13. Arran Barrel Reserve
  14. Bib & Tucker 6 year old Small Batch
  15. Nikka Taketsuru Pure Malt
  16. Old Fitzgerald 11 year old Bottled in Bond (Fall 2021)
  17. Kentucky Owl The Wiseman
  18. GlenDronach PortWood
  19. Wheel Horse Straight Bourbon (Batch 1)
  20. Andalusia Stryker 



Whisky Advocate Top 20 2020 | De Wine Spot
  1. Larceny Barrel Proof (Batch B520)
  2. Knob Creek 12 year old
  3. Benriach The Smoky Twelve
  4. Bulleit Blenders’ Select (Batch 001)
  5. Wild Turkey Rare Breed Barrel Proof Straight Rye
  6. Ardbeg 5 year old Wee Beastie
  7. Elijah Craig Straight Rye
  8. Kilbeggan Single Pot Still
  9. Compass Box The Peat Monster
  10. Aberfeldy 18 year old French Red Wine Cask-Finished (Batch 2920)
  11. Balblair 15 year old
  12. Old Overholt Bottled in Bond Rye
  13. Glenmorangie 15 year old The Cadboll Estate
  14. Drumshanbo Single Pot Still
  15. Teeling Single Pot Still
  16. Macallan 15 year old Double Cask
  17. Balcones Lineage (Batch SML20-2)
  18. Chattanooga Straight Rye Malt (Batch 20I22R)
  19. Mars Iwai 45
  20. M&H Classic



Whiskey Advocate Top 20 Whiskies Of 2019 | De Wine Spot


  1. George Dickel 13-year-old Bottled in Bond
  2. Dewar’s 21-year-old Double Double
  3. Four Roses Small Batch Select
  4. Heaven Hill 7-year-old Bottled in Bond
  5. Aberlour A’bunadh Alba Cask Strength
  6. Woodford Reserve Master’s Collection Batch Proof
  7. Old Ezra 7-year-old Barrel Strength
  8. Glenlivet Enigma
  9. Glenmorangie 14-year-old Quinta Ruban
  10. Writers’ Tears Double Oak
  11. Bardstown Bourbon Company Fusion Series #1
  12. Laphroaig Càirdeas Cask Strength Triple Wood
  13. Talisker Select Reserve
  14. Kaiyō Mizunara Oak
  15. Bruichladdich Bere Barley 2010
  16. Baker’s Single Barrel
  17. New Riff Bottled in Bond Rye
  18. Powers Three Swallow
  19. Matsui The Peated
  20. Adnams Rye Malt



Whiskey Advocate Top 20 Whiskies Of 2018 | De Wine Spot


  1. Nikka From the Barrel
  2. Knob Creek Cask Strength Rye
  3. Jack Daniel’s Single Barrel Heritage Barrel
  4. Port Charlotte 10-year-old
  5. Crown Royal Noble Collection 13-year-old Blenders’ Mash
  6. Armorik Double Maturation
  7. Laphroaig 10-year-old Cask Strength (Batch 010)
  8. GlenDronach 15-year-old Revival
  9. 1792 Bottled in Bond
  10. Belle Meade Cask Strength Reserve
  11. Little Book Chapter 2 “Noe Simple Task”
  12. Forty Creek Unity
  13. Virginia Distillery Co. Cider Cask Finished (Batch 3)
  14. High West Double Rye!
  15. Kilchoman Loch Gorm 2018
  16. Green Spot Chateau Montelena
  17. Penderyn Celt
  18. Glendalough 13-year-old Mizunara Cask
  19. West Cork Glengarriff Series Peat Charred Cask
  20. Sierra Norte Single Barrel Yellow



    Whiskey Advocate Top 20 Whiskies Of 2017 | De Wine Spot


    1. Elijah Craig Barrel Proof
    2. Glenmorangie Astar 2017 Release
    3. Wild Turkey Master’s Keep Decades
    4. Lagavulin 12 Year Old (Diageo Special Releases 2017)
    5. Rampur Select
    6. Ardbeg An Oa
    7. Compass Box Spice Tree Extravaganza
    8. Tamdhu Batch Strength 002
    9. Bruichladdich Islay Barley 2010
    10. Glen Moray 18 Year Old
    11. Little Book “The Easy”
    12. Rebel Yell 10-year-old
    13. Sheep Dip Islay Blended Malt
    14. High West Campfire
    15. Kentucky Peerless Straight Rye
    16. Tyrconnell 16-year-old
    17. Macallan Double Cask 12-year-old
    18. Crown Royal Noble Collection Wine Barrel Finished
    19. Chivas Regal Ultis
    20. Fukano 2017 Edition

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