What is the difference between bourbon and whiskey?

While all bourbon is whiskey, not all whiskey is bourbon. Whiskey is made from fermented grain mash, such as barley, corn, rye, and wheat.

Bourbon is a specific type of American whiskey with at least 51% corn in its mash bill. It must be aged in new, charred oak barrels, distilled to no more than 160 proof, and entered into the barrel at no more than 125 proof. It also must contain no additives.

Bourbon has no minimum aging period, although to be labeled as “straight bourbon,” it must be aged for at least two years. As a result, bourbon has a distinctive sweet and rich flavor profile, often characterized by notes of caramel, vanilla, spice, and oak, setting it apart from other types of whiskey.