Buffalo Trace vs Blanton's Gold​ Comparison​

Buffalo Trace vs Blanton's Gold

Alex author


Founder, writer
buffalo trace vs blanton's gold header

Let's compare Buffalo Trace and Blanton's Gold, because why not

If you’ve ever wondered how Buffalo Trace and Blanton’s compare, this Buffalo Trace vs Blanton’s Gold comparison will sort of give you an idea of what’s similar and what’s not between the mashbill #1 and #2 bourbons.
I admit that this comparison is a little odd because it would make more sense to compare Buffalo Trace to the normal 46.5% ABV Blanton’s found in the US, where there’d be a 1.5% ABV difference. As is, there’s a 6.5% difference, although that’s not such a massive gap as it would be with Blanton’s Straight From The Barrel.
For better or worse all I have at the time is Blanton’s Takara Gold (supposedly 8 years instead of 6 for the normal Gold), so I’ll make do with what I have to get some idea. But on the bright side, Buffalo Trace is supposedly around 7-8 years old, which is still close to Blanton’s Gold.
And with Blanton’s Gold being six to seven times more expensive, if not more, I also figured that this comparison could help us all get a better sense of how wide the gap in quality might be and whether Blanton’s Gold is actually that much better.

My guess is that there will be some noticeable differences (duh I guess), but let’s find out for sure in this Buffalo Trace vs Blanton’s Gold comparison.

The table below outlines the two bourbons.
buffalo trace vs blanton's gold details
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As an FYI, I bought and use these Glencairn glasses for my reviews and comparisons (because they’re the best): Glencairn Crystal Whiskey Glass, Set of 6, Clear, 6 Pack. Full transparency, this is an affiliate link, so I may earn a commission if you buy this or something else from Amazon.

How do they Compare?

buffalo trace vs blanton's gold radar
buffalo trace vs blanton's gold traits

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And the winner is...

blantons' takara gold review page header
No kidding, Blanton’s Gold is noticeably better than Buffalo Trace, but I’m skeptical that it’s multiple times better based on the difference in price and availability. Before you accuse me of stating the obvious, I really thought that Buffalo Trace would hold up better so it’d be closer, so joke’s on me.
I guess you do pay more for a better experience. And you know what, sometimes you get the result you expected, but you still have to do the comparison anyways to be sure.
Blanton’s Gold comes off as a darker and richer bourbon that smells and tastes more mature. It has darker sweetness (including roasted caramel I’ve never gotten from it before), fruitiness (apple, orange, apricot, pineapple), and vanilla that makes it more viscous.
The sweetness and darkness caught me off guard because it really wasn’t there when I compared Blanton’s Gold and EH Taylor Single Barrel. Side by side comparisons seem to emphasize the differences between whiskeys as my senses adjust depending on the bourbons being compared.
I’m surprised that Blanton’s Gold is still far more dry and spicy with more ginger, cardamom, and caraway seed. The slight graininess is also still there (maybe that’s from the caraway seed) that Buffalo Trace doesn’t have. I really thought that Blanton’s stronger sweetness would cover up the grains, but turns out it’s one of the main traits that isn’t going away.
Buffalo Trace is clearly lighter and less rich (somewhat obvious). It doesn’t have the same level of sweetness, fruitiness, or earthiness, but there is overlapping earthy sweetness, caraway, and pumpernickel. There seems to be just enough overlap that Buffalo Trace feels like the “light” version of Blanton’s Gold.
Because Blanton’s is more earthy and sweet, Buffalo Trace’s herbalness and fruitiness comes out a little more, especially the more tropical pineapple and licorice. But the fact that Buffalo Trace isn’t completely overpowered after smelling / drinking Blanton’s Gold tells me that it has decent richness and body, which I appreciate.
Even after this comparison, I’m still not entirely sure I can accurately pick out mashbill #1 vs mashbill #2, unless the extra earthiness and ginger are a defining mashbill #2 trait. Based on my experience with two barrels of Blanton’s Red and Blanton’s Straight From the Barrel, I think the traits can vary quite a bit, so yay barrel variation.
There are a few takeaways. One, Buffalo Trace drinks like the $20-30 bourbon it is and doesn’t outperform its “normal” price (in my opinion of course). Second, Blanton’s Gold is very good, but doesn’t really drink anywhere close to the $150+ price, let alone secondary. It’s a lot better than Buffalo Trace, but not by the margin it probably should.
Alex author
Meet the Author: Alex

I have far too much fun writing about whiskey and singlehandedly running The Whiskey Shelf to bring you independent, honest, and useful reviews, comparisons, and more. I’m proudly Asian American and can speak Cantonese, Mandarin, and some Japanese.

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If you’re on the move, this Glencairn-like stainless steel snifter glass should survive your travels. Shattered glass Glencairn’s really suck. Full transparency, this is an Amazon affiliate link, so I may earn a commission if you buy this or something else from Amazon.

BrüMate NOS’R, Double-Wall Stainless Steel Whiskey Nosing Glass – 7oz (Matte Black)

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