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Buffalo Trace vs Larceny: Which Wins?

Discover the differences between Buffalo Trace vs Larceny in this in-depth comparison and decide which Bourbon is better for You!

Buffalo Trace

buffalo-trace
NoseCaramel, cinnamon, baking spice, cereal
PalateCaramel, vanilla, oak, espresso coffee, chocolate
FinishVanilla, baking spice, oak
Alcohol content90 proof (45% ABV)
How to drinkNeat, rocks
Similar toMaker’s Mark, Eagle Rare, Knob Creek

Buffalo Trace is one of the best-selling spirits for two good reasons: it’s smooth and tasty and attractively priced providing a good experience and good value for the money.

Nose is very subtle with notes of caramel, vanilla and a touch of baking spice. 

Taste hits the spice a little harder, displays oak and fruit and the underlying sweetness is still there, a little caramel and vanilla goes a long way. Mouthfeel is soft and approachable, light on the heat.

The finish has a moderate length, rich in vanilla and baking spice, although flavors don’t sit on the tongue for long but leave a refreshing sensation in the mouth.

The Buffalo Trace is a well-rounded bourbon, making a nice easy sipper with a medium to full body, soft with a chewy feel, fruity and oaky with a medium spicy finish.

It’s not intense or mind-blowing, but it gets the job done delivering a pleasant and satisfying bourbon.

Overall, Buffalo Trace is a solid mid-shelf bourbon, a sipper that does not need neither water nor ice. Makes a solid option for an “everyday whiskey” although not the best mixer as it lacks the punch to deliver tasty cocktails.

If you want to consider further options I’ve compiled a list of similar bourbons to Buffalo Trace that you should look into.

There are a few facts worth knowing about Buffalo Trace:

  • Buffalo Trace is made from corn, rye and malted barley in undisclosed amounts.
  • Buffalo Trace uses a unique aging process of 8 years in which the barrels are stored in the middle floors of the warehouse where temperature fluctuations are the greatest.
  • According to Buffalo Trace who has been using the same recipe and methods for the last 200+ years these variations get reflected in the bourbon creating deeper flavors.
  • 40 barrels at a time are chosen to create one single, small batch of Buffalo Trace.
  • Double Gold North American Bourbon & Whiskey Competition 2019.
  • Gold San Francisco World Spirits Competition 2018.
  • Crafted at the Buffalo Trace Distillery owned by the Louisiana-based Sazerac Company.

Larceny Small Batch

larceny-small-batch
NoseBanana bread, vanilla, butterscotch
PalateBanana, caramel, oak
FinishCaramel, oak spice
Alcohol content92 proof (46% ABV)
How to drinkAdd water
Similar toMaker’s Mark, Weller, Four Roses

There is a bit of nose burn at first that turns into a noticeable banana bread hint, along caramel.

The first sip feels a bit hot but mellows out pretty quick providing caramel sweetness and more banana bread with a bit of oak spice; the body is a bit thin lacking in texture, though.

Finish is sweet and somewhat warm yet satisfying.

Adding a dash of water tunes down the mild heat making it sweeter and even easier to drink.

Larceny for the price is quite good providing good value for the money.

This is tasty and sweet wheated bourbon with moderate heat that can easily be tuned-down making it an easy drinking pour that you can drink everyday.

There are a few facts worth knowing about Larceny Small Batch:

  • Mash bill is comprised of 68% corn, 20% wheat and 12% malted barley.
  • Does not have an age statement but the blend carries bourbons aged from 6 to 12 years.
  • Earned 93 points at the Ultimate Spirits Challenge.
  • Named one of the top 20 spirits in the world by F. Paul Pacult’s Spirit Journal.
  • Named a “Best Buy” by Whisky Magazine. 
  • Larceny gets its name from John E. Fitzgerald who was a treasury agent who used his keys to Kentucky bourbon warehouses to steal barrels and bottle them under his own brand.

What’s the difference between Buffalo Trace and Larceny?

Just to summarize, there is an important difference between these bourbons that you should consider before buying:

  • Buffalo Trace has moderate rye presence in the mash. Rye provides grassy and peppery notes, with a signature spicy finish.
  • Larceny uses wheat as secondary grain behind corn in the mash. Wheated bourbons have a softer and more friendly flavor as compared to bourbons that use rye as their secondary grain, and have a slightly sweeter taste.

Buffalo Trace vs Larceny: Price comparison

Prices are approximate and stated in USD:

WhiskeyPrice
Buffalo Trace$35
Larceny$29

Buffalo Trace vs Larceny: Which is better?

Buffalo Trace is easier to like

WhiskeyLarcenyWeller Special Reserve
Nose
Body
Palate
Finish
Value
  • Buffalo Trace is easier to enjoy as it has very little warmth while striking a nice balance between sweet and spicy notes; this is the perfect everyday whiskey!
  • Larceny is a bit warmer, but this is a nice wheated bourbon that is regarded as the “poor man’s Weller”; all it needs is a drop of water to become milder on the heat and become quite tasty.
  • Larceny is a champ in terms of value as you are unlikely to find a sweet and tasty wheated bourbon at this price range.

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