Pouring glass of whisky, Close-up whisky on the rocks on wooden table against wooden wall
Food - Drink
What Is Cask Strength Bourbon?
If you appreciate a good bourbon, terms like "mash bill," "high rye," and "cask strength" are good to know when you're in search of a bottle you'll enjoy. "Cask strength" is a term that has to do with the alcohol content of a spirit, and while this phrase isn't limited to bourbon, this is what it means in regards to bourbon production.
Bourbon, by law, must be bottled at a minimum of 40% ABV (alcohol by volume), or 80 proof, the "proof" of the spirit being double the alcohol content. Bourbon can be distilled to no more than 160 proof (80% ABV) and must go into aging barrels at no more than 125 proof, and after aging, the term "cask strength" comes into play.
Once aging is complete, many distillers add water to bourbon, bringing down the total ABV, but cask-strength bourbons aren't watered down or chill-filtered, making them powerfully intense in flavor and alcohol content. Cask-strength whiskeys can range from 60% ABV to as high as 75%, delivering an unadulterated bourbon experience.