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Angel’s Envy vs Elijah Craig Small Batch: Which Wins?

Discover the differences between Angel’s Envy vs Elijah Craig Small Batch in this in-depth comparison and decide which bourbon is better for You!

Angel’s Envy Kentucky Straight Bourbon

angels-envy-straight-bourbon
NoseCoconut, chocolate, vanilla
PalateBread, maple syrup, caramel, vanilla
FinishToasted oak, baking spice
Alcohol content86 proof (43% ABV)
How to drinkNeat
Similar toWoodford Reserve, Basil Hayden’s

Angel’s Envy is not the typical bourbon as it finished it’s aging in port casks. Port is a strong, sweet, typically dark red fortified wine, originally from Portugal, typically drunk as a dessert wine.

The nose has hints not typical of bourbon such as coconut and chocolate followed by vanilla.

On the palate, the Angel’s Envy feels a bit thin lacking in texture. Taste is a little spicy up-front like a red wine, followed by maple syrup, caramel, vanilla and baking spice.

The finish is long and easy, moderately sweet, with hints of toasted oak and baking spice.

Angel’s Envy is an interesting pour. This is different to the hundreds of bourbons I’ve sampled so far. Very smooth with very little to no burn with a maple breakfast vibe and a tad of spice.

Having a bit more proof would make this bourbon a 5-star pour but it’s quite enjoyable as is.

There are a few facts worth knowing about Angel’s Envy:

  • Aged for 4 to 6 years.
  • Mash bill is comprised of 72% corn, 18% rye and 10% malted barley.
  • Earned 98 points from the Wine Enthusiast.
  • Earned five stars from F. Paul Pacult’s Spirit Journal.
  • This brand was created by Master Distiller Lincoln Henderson who developed the Woodford Reserve and the Gentleman Jack while working for Brown Forman.
  • This brand is owned by Bermuda-based Bacardi Company along Grey Goose, Patron Tequila, among several others.

Elijah Craig Small Batch

elijah-craig-small-batch
NoseWood, chocolate, cinnamon, clove
PalateChocolate, wood, butterscotch, citrus
FinishOak spice, cinnamon, clove, black pepper, vanilla
Alcohol content94 proof (47% ABV)
How to drinkRocks, cocktails
Similar toWoodford Reserve, Buffalo Trace, Knob Creek

Nose offers oak aroma at first, followed by a hint of chocolate, cinnamon and clove.

On the palate, you get oak spice up-front, with a hint of bitter chocolate, butterscotch, vanilla and a tad of citrus.

There is warmth on the finish as you get a hit of ethanol and a spicy bite rich in oak spice, cinnamon, black pepper and clove with some butterscotch sweetness coming late to the party.

Elijah Craig has a nice nose, a good taste but it lets you down on the finish as it feels warm and spicy.

It becomes better when adding a drop of water as it becomes sweeter and loses some of the heat along the peppery bite.

Is not a bad bourbon by any means, barely making it to the sipper category but definitely needs more persistence than the average bourbon in this price range.

Learn more about this brand by reading my post: Discover the Best Elijah Craig Whiskey where I rank every release.

There are a few facts worth knowing about Elijah Craig:

  • Elijah Craig is credited as the first distiller to use heavily charred casks to age bourbon.
  • It is made from a mash bill comprised of 78% corn, 10% rye and 12% malted barley. 
  • It is bottled by blending no less than 200 casks of maturing bourbon, each of which was rested in a Kentucky rickhouse for a minimum of 8 years.
  • This whiskey previously had an age statement of 12 years but in 2016 the age statement was removed to extend its availability.
  • The distiller also increased the maximum number of barrels used per batch from 100 to 200.

Angel’s Envy vs Elijah Craig: Price comparison

Prices are approximate and stated in USD:

WhiskeyPrice
Angel’s Envy Kentucky Straight Bourbon$55
Elijah Craig Small Batch $34

Angel’s Envy vs Elijah Craig: Which is better?

Angel’s Envy is easier to like

WhiskeyAngel’s EnvyElijah Craig
Nose
Body
Palate
Finish
Value
  • Angel’s Envy is a sweet and easy bourbon making a nice “breakfast whiskey”.
  • The body is quite thin and lacks proof for the price but drinks quite easy, offering unique tasting notes from the finish in those Port wines.
  • Is not my cup of tea but I know most folks are gonna love it. Personally, I prefer the Angel’s Envy Rye which I consider to be vastly superior.
  • Elijah Craig is not bad, is just the finish is not that good as it becomes warm and somewhat peppery.
  • A bit of water is enough to make it sweeter and more approachable and makes a good option for those who want a tad of harshness in their drinks.

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