Larceny Bourbon Review

Larceny Bourbon Review
Oh Larceny Bourbon. Your dessert like qualities, refined yet rowdy texture and benedictine meets bourbon spiced cherries scent make you one hell of a sipping bourbon. Neat no ice and you’re the perfect compliment to a hearty meal and filled with those wonderful sweet wheat qualities you get in Maker’s Mark, W.L. Weller, Pappy and all the others that share that wheater category save maybe Rebel Yell which always tastes bitter to me.

Larceny Bourbon gets it’s name from John E. Fitzgerald who was a treasury agent who used his keys to Kentucky bourbon warehouses to steal premium barrels of bourbon and bottle them under his own brand Old Fitzgerald. Over the years the Old Fitz brand changed hands many hands and was once owned by Julian “Pappy” Van Winkle but now is owned by Heaven Hill, the maker of Larceny Bourbon.

Larceny Bourbon Info

Region: Kentucky, USA

Distiller: Heaven Hill
Mashbill: They ain’t sayin’
Cask: New harred oak
Age: NAS
ABV: 46%

Price: $25

Larceny Bourbon Review

Deep caramel with hints of red

A very pleasant blend of cherries, benedictine, corn, sweet maltiness and a touch of oak and spice.

First up we have some molasses, caramel and vanilla. Mix in some cherries, spiced cider, citrus, sugared malt, Sugar Daddy’s and a hint of spiced lemon cake wrapped in a nicely oaked package.

Decent balance, medium body and a nice feel. Far smoother and easier to drink than one might think a 92 proof bourbon would be.

Medium finish that’s a bit like a malted milk ball (minus the chocolate) crossed with a sugar daddy and some oak.

Larceny Bourbon is a decent sipping bourbon. It’s full of flavor and has a bit of an oaky kick to it that pairs well with the sweetness. It’s a robust whiskey that pulls off the wheated softness without becoming weak and spineless. It’s a whisky I could drink any time and not get bored with and the 92 proof makes it a prime candidate for cocktails. If you’re looking for a good bourbon at a decent price then you should definitely give Larceny Bourbon a try.

SCORE: 87/100 (B+)

Larceny Bourbon Review - Score Breakdown
  • Nose - 88
  • Palate - 89
  • Finish - 87
  • Balance, Body & Feel - 87


Summary = Larceny Bourbon is a darn good whiskey, especially for the price!

Larceny Bourbon Label



Larceny Bourbon: Last Glass Update (06-13-16)

Larceny Bourbon EmptyHere we are at the end of the line for this bottle of Larceny Bourbon and what a ride it’s been. Since reviewing this bottle I’ve had a host of wheaters (wheat heavy bourbon) to compare it to, including an expansive Old Fitzgerald Vertical Tasting. So I’ve had some time to think and as far as a cheap and delicious wheated bourbons go, Larceny Bourbon is hard to beat it. Even under my updated scoring it rated quite well here at the end. Looking over my 1/4, 1/2 and 3/4 empty notes I don’t see any reason to adjust the score by more than a point (+1). It’s a solid whiskey that’s worth picking up.

FINAL VERDICT: This is a buy all day long. Good whiskey at a great price.

Josh Peters

Josh Peters

I read about, think about, write about, and drink whisk(e)y. In short, it's my passion.
Josh Peters

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48 Responses to Larceny Bourbon Review

  1. OK – saw a bottle at the local liquor store and decided to pick it after this review. Great price for the flavor. It’s smooth and almost quiet up front with a nice build to sweet cherries. It’s not afraid to kick like a mule, if a pretty and friendly mule. Makes me think of a corny American scotch, almost a Speyside.

    • Hey Dale. Thanks for the call out and the review. I love the part about “It’s not afraid to kick like a mule, if a pretty and friendly mule” and the corny Speyside comparison. Maybe you should be writing for this blog… let me know if you want to do a guest post. 🙂

      • Hey Josh – I’d love to write reviews but they’ll be irregular at best. Hook me up with a username and let’s talk about it.

  2. So as an additional follow-up, Larceny makes a great mixed drink with lemonade. Ours is a homemade lemonade infused with green tea and lime slices but I’m sure that it’d be good with any lemonade.

    • That sounds damn good. Whiskey + Lemonade is a great combination, but that homemade green tea + lime lemonade sounds amazing. Thanks for the follow-up!

  3. For the past few months I’ve been indulging in bourbons, and so far I’m really enjoying the few wheated bourbons that I’ve found.

    Unfortunately though, both Larceny, and the Weller line-up have been hard to find at my local stores, but thankfully online search engines such a ‘Wine Searcher’ can help locate these tough to find spirits.

    • Come to Lexington, KY , and you’ll be in bourbon heaven. You can even get Larceny at some pharmacies…

      I sympathize, by the way. I live in lovely Lexington, but when I visit home (SC), it’s hard to find my favorites even at nice bars.

  4. Thanks for the review Josh; for some reason Larceny has never seemed to get much attention (probably because if anyone in the whiskey magazines is talking about a wheater, it’s one coming out of Buffalo Trace). I’m a big fan of this bourbon- I think it’s really underrated. The rougher edge it has vs. other wheaters is something I really enjoy- it makes it stand out & makes it a good middle ground between wheat & rye bourbons. I had a similar experience to you in the sense that when I originally got it, I liked it but wasn’t especially impressed. I went back to it 6-12 mos. after opening the bottle & absolutely loved it then. What sealed the deal on my Larceny mancrush was doing a blind taste test with 6 bourbons including Larceny and finding out I liked it more than several bourbons I paid 2 times as much for.

    • It’s always interesting to see how they change over the time being open. Thanks for sharing the blind tasting story. If you don’t mind me asking, what else was in the tasting?

      • I didn’t do a real scientific tasting, just my wife pouring them out when I wasn’t looking and having me taste them. But the ones I tried that night were Larceny, Four Roses SB 125th, Geroge T. Stagg from 2010, Elmer T. Lee, and Elijah Craig 18 yr. There may have been one or two more that I don’t remember. The George T Stagg wasn’t brought down to proof, which made it quite a shock to unsuspectingly drink neat and gave it a big disadvantage.

        My favorite out of the tasting was the Four Roses 125, but Larceny was #2- my wife even threw it in there more than one round and I picked it as my fav every time. The biggest surprise was how much more I liked it than Elmer T. Lee, as that had been my go to bourbon at the time.

        Based on the tasting, I was pegging the drams that ended up being Larceny for $50+ bottles, and I wasn’t a big fan of it prior to that. I think wheaters may have a bit of an advantage over rye bourbons in a consecutive blind tasting like I did, which has lead me two my new thing with bourbon that I recommend trying out because it’s a fun experiment. I call it bourbon-bourbon pairings (or whiskey-whiskey pairings if you broaden the scope). Instead of drinking the whiskey with select foods to enhance each other, I’ve started pairing whiskeys to drink consecutively to bring out flavors in the 2nd whiskey. Typically this involves starting out w/ a rye whiskey or a more rye-forward bourbon (usually Four Roses Single Barrel) and following it up with a sweeter whiskey like George Dickel 12 or Barrel Select or a wheated bourbon, or I’ll follow it up with Angel’s Envy which seems to accentuate the port notes in it.

        • Sounds like fun and that 4R 125th is just insanely good, great to hear it topped out. When i was married my ex did the same for me form time to time. She’d pick a handful of bottles at random and then I’d rank them and guess what they were. It was a lot of fun.

          I love doing whiskey whisky pairings like that as well. It’s always fun to see what pops in your senses you may not have picked up before.

          Cheers Joe!

  5. Great review. I agree, this one grows on you over time. It’s a fantastic option for mixing, but smooth enough to drink neat. Brown sugar with that classic soft, sweet lingering finish you get from wheated whiskey. If you are a Makers Mark, W.L. Weller, or Old Fitzgerald fan, this is a must. A bit on the thin side, I’d love to see a barrel proof version of this someday (hint hint Heaven Hill)

  6. bought a bottle($29) this week for son’s birthday. i have been slowly sampling our ABC store’s bourbon selections. very smooth, almost soft on the tongue, mellow after taste with no ethanol fumes up the nose. have had it in a shot glass neat and in juice glass with one ice cube. was surprised how mellow it was compared to Knob Creek.
    just a tired old sailor glad to be home from the sea

    • Hey Scott,

      The reason why Larceny is so much more mellow than Knob Creek is that Larceny uses wheat as its secondary grain while Knob Creek uses rye. The wheat gives it a softer, sweeter, smoother character overall.

  7. One of my favorites. I feel for the price, you get a ton of flavor compared to dollars spent. I drink it neat, or sometimes on the rocks, and rely enjoy it. I never have hard time finding it, and due to its price the wife doesn’t even yell at me about buying it! The bottle is nothing special to look at, a little cheesy. But the taste isn’t.
    BTW…..I was handed a bottle of Middleton Barry Crockett tonight as a thank you gift for officiating a wedding… excited to sip on this!

  8. Josh,

    I ended up getting a set of decanters as an early father’s day present. With how much Larceny improved after opening the bottle (I wasn’t too impressed originally, by the end it was one of my favorite bourbons in the price range), it seemed like a no-brainer to put in one of the decanters, but I’m still undecided on what to put in the other. Have you had any other bourbons that really stood out as getting better after the bottle had been opened a while.

  9. ?Josh,

    I ended up getting a set of decanters as an early father’s day present. With how much Larceny improved after opening the bottle (I wasn’t too impressed originally, by the end it was one of my favorite bourbons in the price range), it seemed like a no-brainer to put in one of the decanters, but I’m still undecided on what to put in the other. Have you had any other bourbons that really stood out as getting better after the bottle had been opened a while?

    • Hey Joe, sounds like some awesome Father’s Day gifts. Old Forrester Signature opened up a ton for me with air as did Bufflo Trace and Four Roses Single Barrel. I’d easily recommend those as good decanter whiskeys.

  10. I love this bourbon, especially in the under $30 club. This and Eagle Rare are my every day drinkers. It’s got more flavor than Makers (46 is a favorite and in a whole other class) and about $2 less per bottle. I like keeping daily drinkers in the 90 proof range as I usually drink them neat. I haven’t tried it yet (normally use Evan Williams BiB) in a Mint Julep, but I bet it would really shine.

  11. Wow. This is a tremendous bourbon for $26. As wheaters are concerned, I have not had many: Maker’s, Maker’s 46, and a bottle of Wellers antique 107. Maker’s 46 is my favorite of the bunch, while Maker’s is my least favorite. This Larceny is very similar to Maker’s 46. The cherry is a bit less pronounced, but the cinnamon and brown sugar qualities of Larceny are very nice. The finish is long, and the mouthfeel is creamy and rich. Perhaps it was the alternating between JD07 this weekend, but the volume of flavor is deep and rich. I am a fan and I would highly recommend to anyone.

  12. I found Josh’s notes spot on, well, except for my palate limitations which missed a few of the more intricate flavor pops, lol. Definitely want to give this bottle a week to rest and see what develops.

    • I find that most bourbons really pop after a month or so of opening and with 2-3 glasses (3-5 oz) taken out of them. That seems to be when things really pop and also the point when I review a whiskey if it’s possible for me to do it that way.

  13. I went to the state liquor store shortly after New Years and the bourbon shelves had been hit hard by the revelers. I picked up a bottle of Larceny since my first three choices were sold out. I was very pleasantly surprised. I won’t try to get real technical with tasting notes but it opens up big and sweet and has a pleasant spicy middle and a long finish. I like a cube or two in my drink, and the 92 proof holds up really will to a bit of melted ice. This is one of the best under $30 bourbons I’ve tasted.

  14. We ordered this for our small bar in Cedar Key Florida about a month back. Since then, I’ve gone through a case of it and have yet to have someone try it that doesnt take a photo of the bottle and say they’re adding it to their home supply

    Great bourbon that is easily sipped on no matter what time of day or mood you’re in. I’d put it up against many costing double if not triple what this comes in at

  15. I tried Larceny towards the beginning of my bourbon journey, and was not impressed. Approached it again years later after reading your review. What a delightful sipper! I have no idea what I was thinking. It’s funny how your palate changes over the years. Thank you for convincing me to give this a second look. It’s a staple at my home bar!

  16. Larceny on sale this month at ABC store. I’m a newbie who started out on Buffalo Trace but after your review got bottle of Larceny and found it to have a taste of spicey cherries like the old candy. I really liked it even in an old fashioned. Thanx.

  17. Got a bottle of this for my birthday recently. I liked it right away. Buffalo Trace my normal everyday but adding this one to the rotation. Always form my opinion then go to check your thoughts. Love your site and reviews. You have turned me on to some great pours over the years. BTW, also got bottle of Breckenridge bourbon for birthday. Not impressed at all.

  18. Having a pour of Larceny right now, and I agree it’s great, especially for the low price point. (And since it’s so cheap, I won’t feel guilty about making an Old Fashioned or bourbon-and-Coke with it. I’ll bet it makes a GREAT Old Fashioned!) My “everyday” is Henry McKenna 10; outstanding credentials and a relatively low price. The Larceny is even cheaper, comes in a larger bottle, is a wheater, and was on a list I downloaded: “15 to try before you die.” So now I’ve tried it, I like it, and I will buy it again.

  19. Just discovered this Bourbon, on a recommendation from a friend. Very nice! I suppose it makes sense that I would like it, since I’m also a Maker’s Mark fan.

    Which reminds me, I haven’t had any Maker’s Mark in a long time; I need to remedy that.

  20. So I’ve been buying handles of Larceny for $42 and sending in $20 rebates. So I’m getting a handle for $22. I honestly do not know if I could possibly find a better deal on a better bourbon.

    This is a quality pour every time. I get loads of cherries on the nose and palate and am at times bewildered by a spice of rye I get on the back end from this wheated bourbon. At times I wonder if it has both wheat and rye in the mash bill?

    If you’re reading this and debating whether or not to pull the trigger do yourself a favor and get a bottle. A fantastic sub $30 pour without discount!

  21. Found a fifth on sale for $19 after tax. I feel like I’m getting away with a crime, because it is worth the full MSRP.

    The only other wheated bourbon in my collection is Maker’s 46, but I tend to save that one for special occasions.

    It’s good to have such an affordable wheated option, as, like some of your other reviewers, my favorite daily drinkers include McKenna 10 year, and Buffalo Trace (local shop has a great BT single barrel select!). Larceny really fills a niche.

  22. Trying this tonight, comparing to Bernheim wheat whiskey. I’ve been gradually dialing back on bourbons, tiring of the oak and cinnamon, and thought I had a winner in Burnside Bourbon, blended in Portland, until they up and changed the recipe a few months ago, jacking up the char a bit too much for my taste. Been looking for a mellow butterscotch sipper ever since and had decided Bernheim fit the bill, but then heard about Larceny as another comparable wheater at a slightly lower price point, so am trying it tonight. Your tasting notes are right on, the cherry is remarkable, and overall this is a great drink — a Manhattan in a bottle 🙂 I can tell already, though, that I’ll be heading back to Bernheim when this is done, for that mellow caramel experience in just a slightly lower proof. Are they both Heaven Hill products? Anyway, enjoyed your post, thanks.

  23. I picked up a bottle of this the other day. My first glass a few days ago seemed very closed off without a whole lot of nose or flavor. I tried it again last night and it was pretty much the same, easily drinkable but uninspiring. I did notice that it opened up a bit with some water, but not very much.

    Not to rush to judgement, I filled a flask with some to allow more air in the bottle and will let it sit a few weeks to see what happens.

  24. Looks like I will never know if time and oxygen will open it up. I just turned the remaining Larceny into bottle full of delightful, sugar-free whiskey sour.

    8 oz. Larceny
    Juice of 4 lemons
    12 packets of Splenda

    Just add to ice and a splash of lemon seltzer.

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