Lakeside Bourbon: Traverse City Whiskey

Just picture it with me. The sunset is glistening off the crystal blue waters and ambient waves crash off the dock posts underneath your feet. A trolling fisherman shoots you a simple wave as he idles across your view, you nod back and hold up a glass to cheers him and the day gone by. You take a pull from your drink, a sweet sip that is accompanied by a well-deserved bite to the back of the throat. As the day settles, so do you, and pour yourself another snort from a bottle, boldly labeled… Traverse City Whiskey Co.

This day is on the horizon and you will be best prepared with a bottle of TC Whiskey at your side. A bottle drenched in history, family legacy and pure craftsmanship. A bit off the “beaten path”, away from the sprawls of seaside tourists and commotion lies a quaint brick building at the corner of Cass and 14th. Inside, a wood-framed bar, caged distilling equipment with the aroma of a modern-day saloon. What’s on tap, whiskey… that’s it. Ultimately it what makes TC Whiskey a fantastic bourbon, their focus is on one spirit and one spirit alone… straight bourbon whiskey.

It’s in their DNA. A recipe that dates back three generations to which today they still use the formula and techniques derived directly from century-old patents. They are narrow focused on creating a single product, a no frills, no BS gentleman’s drink that is ready for you to enjoy.

As I pop the cork on batch #008 of this heartland elixir, I am immediately hit with an ambrosial aroma. A deeper sniff pulls in a bolder scent of earthly offerings like grain and corn. That draft comes with a classic bourbon bite but not until it hits that back of your throat.

But then again, who buys a bottle for sniffin’… let’s get to drinkin’.

The first sip as you would expect from a small batch bourbon is smooth. The grain coats your mouth for a bold, yet not overpowering taste that is followed by the spicy nip we all love, but soon fades into a sweet, almost salty finish. Traverse City Whiskey packs a punch with 86 proof, but at the same time is dangerously sippable. Like a Midwestern Gentleman, it’s a simple, “every mans” bourbon. While we always recommend the first pull to be neat, the sweeter notes make this a great cocktail bourbon. From a whiskey ginger to a morning Revolver, this is a great bottle to keep on hand for those booze filled science projects.

All in all, Traverse City Whiskey Co. has taken the lakeside lifestyle and bottled it up into a perfect whiskey. It blends the modest, flavorful notes of the town it calls home with the bold, burly flavor of its history. If you find yourself on the shores of Grand Traverse Bay (Lake Michigan) in the future, be sure to stop in for a drink, the only drink on the menu… Traverse City Whisky Co. – Straight Bourbon Whiskey.

For more about the boys at TC whiskey, visit them at and follow them on Instagram, @tcwhiskey.