Hudson Baby Bourbon is the first bourbon whiskey to be distilled in New York, Michael’s home state, since prohibition. Hudson uses 100% New York-grown corn and small American oak barrels to create an extremely smooth sipping bourbon which remains close to the drink’s classic identifying features, vanilla and caramel. Like many craft distillery operations, the economics of whiskey making has incentivized the Tuthilltown Spirits Distillery to become something of a jack-of-all-trades. Tuthilltown now produces a range of products from classic whiskeys to gins and vodkas made using New York apples.
The craft operation was so successful that the William Grant & Sons company, owners of Glenfiddich and Balvenie, bought Hudson a mere four years after it opened its doors. At the time, the move was seen as providing Hudson with the additional capital necessary to ramp up production.
Type: New York Bourbon
MSRP: $45 (375ml)
Color: Medium bronze
Aroma: Sweet caramel with strong vanilla and light oak aroma; upon opening a light spice and heavier vanilla
Pallet: Buttery caramel on the initial taste and clear spice on the finish. Middle taste is highly complex, with a combination of light nutty, citrus, and salt flavors
Michael: I want to start by saying that this is a very good sipping whiskey. That said, I don’t think I can recommend a whiskey I would never personally buy. The price point is simply absurdly high for what is — at best, a half-step up from a normal, medium quality American bourbon. At this price point why would you not go with Buffalo Trace or Balcones? The craft whiskey market has brought new and interesting brands to the American market, but they come at a price premium. When the price premium outweighs the uptick in quality I think you end up with what we have here.
Andrew: When I tried the Hudson my first thought was, “this is what a bourbon should be”. The aroma and flavors are incredibly rich. Definitely a good sipping bourbon.
Verdict: Saturn, the 7th level of Paradiso.