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highwest-14yearlightwhiskey-66f0d96f7dc62f5b77217c797e2b2f924802e40fThe middle of the 20th century was not a great time to be an American whiskey maker. In the 1960s, U.S. drinkers began to move away from bourbon and rye and gravitate towards lighter spirits – gin, vodka, and blended imported whisky distilled to a higher proof and aged in used casks.

(image via High West)

In response, the federal government created a new category in 1968: light whiskey. Defined as a whiskey distilled to higher than 160 proof and lower than 190 proof, and aged in used or uncharred new oak containers, light…

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