Top 100 Spirits of 2018 | Wine Enthusiast
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Top 100 Spirits of 2018

Top 100 Spirits of 2018
Photos by Ashton Worthington / Animation by Matthew Dimas Photo by Ashton Worthington

As is the case every year, this list is culled from all the products reviewed in our Spirit Buying Guide over the past 12 months. And, as always, compiling it has been quite a treat, with selections ranging from rare single-vintage Armagnacs to Bourbons meant to represent the pinnacle of the distiller’s craft, like Wild Turkey Master’s Keep Revival, which nods to the legendary Jimmy Russell, or Booker’s Bourbon 2017 Sip Awhile, a tribute to Booker Noe.

Each year also brings delightful surprises, however. For example, who would have predicted a tropical-fruit-inflected gin from a newly launched Kentucky whiskey maker, like Rabbit Hole’s rye barrel-finished dry gin? Or an amaro that showcases arugula’s natural bitterness to pleasing effect, found in Italy’s Rucolino Amaro? How about a pink-tinged Tequila rested in Napa Cabernet barrels. Hello, Código 1530 Reposado.

Together, these are the pleasures of the spirits world. We’ll always have familiar standbys to comfort us, like classic Scotch whiskies, pristine vodkas and cozy brandies that gently warm and cheer with every sip. But at the same time, new, innovative bottlings add pep to our step. They push the industry forward and spark new cocktail ideas, too.

Now is the perfect time to celebrate the old and the new. We’re lucky to have both options in abundance. –Kara Newman

Click here for a downloadable PDF of our Top 100 Spirits of 2018.

What Is Blind Tasting?

All tastings reported in the Buying Guide are performed blind. Typically, products are tasted in peer-group flights of from 5-8 samples. Reviewers may know general information about a flight to provide context—vintage, variety or appellation—but never the producer or retail price of any given selection. When possible, products considered flawed or uncustomary are retasted.

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About The Scores

*Products deemed unacceptable (receving a rating below 80 points) are not reviewed.


The Pinnacle of quality


A great achievement


Highly recommended


Very Good
Often good value; well recommended


Suitable for everyday consumption, often good value


Can be employed

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