Top 50 Spirits of 2013

A year of innovation and excellence.

Whittling this list down to a mere 50 spirits from the hundreds of bottlings tasted throughout the year was a challenging task. 

Why was it so hard to choose?

Because 2013 brought an excess of excellence. A list of favorite spirits tasted within the last year could have easily been double this length. For sure, this is a nice problem to have—and it certainly doesn’t happen every year. But particularly within the whiskey and brandy categories, there have been many “Wow!” tasting moments. 

Producers are embracing innovation like never before. And this creativity is coming from all areas—an unusual barrel-aged gin, a field-to-flask whiskey and a citrusy Tequila fermented using wine yeasts are only three examples among this year’s Top 50 Spirits. 

While all of the spirits featured on this list received high scores, we considered many other factors as well. We strove to provide a diverse list reflecting a broad range of spirits categories, regions and price points among those reviewed during the past 12 months. Although some limited-edition bottlings are included on the list, we avoided including those available in extremely small quantities. 

We hope this list of must-try spirits will yield many memorable moments for you in the year ahead.


See the full list of 2013’s Top 50 Spirits in the PDF version, or view the list in our Buying Guide.

To see the Top 50 Spirits of 2012, click here.

To see Wine Enthusiast’s Top 100 Wines of 2013, click here

To see the Wine Enthusiast’s Top 100 Best Buys, click here.

To see Wine Enthusiast’s Top 100 Cellar Selections, click here

To see Wine Enthusiast’s Top 25 Beers, click here.

Published on November 25, 2013
Topics: Top 50 Spirits
About the Author
Kara Newman 
Spirits Editor

Kara Newman reviews spirits and writes about spirits and cocktail trends for Wine Enthusiast. She's the author of Cocktails for a Crowd (Chronicle Books, 2013) as well as a forthcoming book, also from Chronicle, about equal-parts cocktails. Email: spirits@wineenthusiast.net



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