Bourbon sold outside of the US

  • TheMarlboroMan
    Topic creator
    Joined: 13.06.2018Posts: 1Ratings: 0


      this is my first time posting here and I'm glad I've found a place with so much information about my new Hobie. 

      So I've been wondering for some time now about bourbon in the EU. From what I understand we don't have the same  regulations as the US has on it so stuff such as Western Gold that has added caramel coloring, or Early Times that's aged in refill casks and labeled as just whiskey  (in the States) here can be called bourbon. I think Kentucky Gentleman that's a blend of 51% bourbon and 49% grain spirits is also sold as bourbon in the EU.

     Now I understand that these are cheap whiskeys, but doesn't this mean that even the more expensive bottles of whiskey sold in the EU might not qualify as bourbon back in the States as it's perfectly legal due to different laws that are in place in Europe.

     Do you know by any chance anything more on the subject or where I can find a list of rules on what a whiskey needs to be so it can be sold as bourbon in the EU? Google has left me down this time unfortunately.

  • bedlamborn Member bedlamborn Joined: 18.09.2016Posts: 611Collectionbedlamborns CollectionRatings: 21


    You can find information on this side

    B. The EC agrees to restrict, within its regulatory framework (Council Regulation (EEC) No 1576/89, Article 11 or an equivalent successor regulation), the use of the product designations: "Tennessee whisky"/"Tennessee whiskey", "Bourbon whiskey"/"Bourbon whiskey" and "Bourbon" as a designation for Bourbon whisk(e)y to distilled spirits/spirit drinks products of the USA produced in compliance with the laws and regulations of the USA (27 CFR 5.22 or an equivalent successor regulation). Further, it is recognized that these whiskies shall continue to be subject to all of the labelling requirements of the EC.

  • horst_s Administrator horst_s Joined: 01.07.2014Posts: 507Ratings: 702

    @bedlamborn I as well think, that the Bourbons are labelled correctly in the EC. Without one fact. The naming of artificial color to darken the whiskey is only required on the labels in a few states in the EC (e.g. Germany, Denmark). A lot of whisky and whiskey producer do not care about this local regulation. There is an other competing law about the free movements of goods between the member states of the EC.

    Kind regards, Horst Luening, Master Taster,
    bedlamborn liked that
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