Save these bottles for when you can hit the trails again, or bring the spirit of outdoor adventures home right now.

By Scott Bay
May 06, 2020
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Flowers are blooming, trees are budding, and the warm breeze is calling for summer adventures. Most of us are endlessly day-dreaming about our next trip while waiting to be freed from the COVID-19 lockdowns, and there's no time like the present to reminisce about sipping a good whiskey by a campfire with good friends, telling tales of the past, and enjoying crisp mountain air.

While camping might be something to look forward to, there’s no reason not to bring the outdoors to you — the best whiskeys for camping can also be enjoyed at home, and some are even available for delivery straight to your door.

Courtesy of Tincup

There are a few notable distillers that have created spirits made for nights around a campfire — Tincup cuts its whiskey with fresh rocky mountain water, and Rampur uses the severe weather changes in the high Himalayas to create a unique spirit.

The whiskeys that are best for camping have the same deeply rooted ethos as all outdoor enthusiasts: to opt outside and connect to the natural world. And, once we all can hit a trail, you can bet I’ll have a bottle of one of the following in my pack.

Tincup Rye

Courtesy of Tincup

Tincup whiskey is rooted in the mountains and may very well be the original mountain bourbon-style whiskey. Its namesake — Tincup, Colorado — is an old pioneer town where miners would drink whiskey from tin cups in the deep, man-made caverns. Keeping the spirit of the American West, each bottle is now capped with its own tin shot glass (which also makes it easy to drink on the trail). The perfect companion for camping is the brand’s latest member of the Tincup family, Tincup Rye. The bold, yet smooth spirit is perfectly balanced after being aged for three years before being cut to proof with fresh Rocky Mountain Water.

To buy: Drizly.com, from $29

High West Campfire

Courtesy of High West Whiskey

It’s all in the name — High West Campfire is practically made to celebrate the end of a rigorous day of adventure around a blazing campfire, or to warm up the next morning (we’re not here to judge). High West calls Park City, Utah home. Distilled 7,000 feet up the Wasatch Mountains, High West takes pride in bringing the area’s adventurous spirit to each of its extraordinary whiskeys. Campfire’s fine blend of scotch, bourbon, and rye creates smoky top notes and finishes smooth and delicious — which brings me back to this bottle time and time again.

To buy: drizly.com, from $63

Wemyss Spice King

Courtesy of Wemyss Malts

Heading across the pond to Scotland, Wemyss malts produce small-batch Scotch whiskey made from barley surrounding the Wemyss Castle set atop sea-battered cliffs. Pronounced “Weems,” Wemyss is the Scottish word for caves, like the ancient ones where its castle is located. The spicy-sweet Spice King is a great adventure buddy. It is a blend of single malts from around the island, creating a sipping experience that fills the imagination with adventurous stories of lore.

To buy: wemyssmalts.com, from $40

Rampur Double Cask

Courtesy of Rampur Distillery

One of the oldest whiskey distilleries in India, Radico Khaitan is located in the foothills of the Himalayas. Rampur Double Cask’s distilling process parallels camping’s hot days and cold nights. Its unique location exposes the whiskey to polar opposite climate conditions throughout the year, with the Indian summer giving Rampur an added dimension and depth. The spirit of weathering extreme conditions paired with a bold flavor profile make this great for any outdoor trip.

To buy: Drizly.com, from $76