If there’s one spirit synonymous with American drinking culture, it’s bourbon — and that’s written into law. America’s native spirit must be produced in the States to officially qualify as bourbon, and while it doesn’t have to be produced in Kentucky by law, 95 percent of it is.

Bourbon is available at a range of price points, but the rarest and oldest bottles of the spirit could set you back by about $55,000. Read below to find the most expensive bourbons according to Wine Searcher.

25. Willett Family Estate Bottled Single-Barrel 17 Year Old Straight Bourbon Whiskey, Kentucky, USA

Willett Family Estate Bottled Single-Barrel 17 Year Old Straight Bourbon Whiskey is one of the most expensive bourbons in the world.

  • Average price: $6,312
  • ABV: 58.2%
  • Tasting Notes: Rye, sweetness, toasted oak

24. John E. Fitzgerald Very Special Reserve 20 Year Old Straight Bourbon Whiskey, Kentucky, USA

John E. Fitzgerald Very Special Reserve 20 Year Old Straight Bourbon Whiskey is one of the most expensive bourbons in the world.

  • Average price: $6,739
  • ABV: 45%
  • Tasting Notes: Caramel, dusty cocoa, clove, red fruit, figs

23. Old Rip Van Winkle ‘Pappy Van Winkle’s Family Reserve’ 23 Year Old Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey, Kentucky, USA

Old Rip Van Winkle 'Pappy Van Winkle's Family Reserve' 23 Year Old Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey is one of the most expensive bourbons in the world.

  • Average price: $6,746
  • ABV: 47.8%
  • Tasting Notes: Caramel, ripe apples, cherries, oak wood, tobacco, hints of chocolate

22. Colonel E.H. Taylor ‘Cursed Oak’ Straight Kentucky Bourbon Whiskey, Kentucky, USA

Colonel E.H. Taylor 'Cursed Oak' Straight Kentucky Bourbon Whiskey is one of the most expensive bourbons in the world.

  • Average price: $6,953
  • ABV: 50%
  • Tasting Notes: Vanilla, toffee, figs, dried oak

21. Michter’s 20 Years Old Limited Release Single-Barrel Bourbon Whiskey, Kentucky, USA

Michter's 20 Years Old Limited Release Single-Barrel Bourbon Whiskey is one of the most expensive bourbons in the world.

  • Average price: $7,402
  • ABV: 57.1%
  • Tasting Notes: Black cherry, rich molasses, honeysuckle, roasted pecans, toasted charred oak

20. Martin Mills 24 Year Old Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey, Kentucky, USA

Martin Mills 24 Year Old Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey is one of the most expensive bourbons in the world.

  • Average price: $7,630
  • ABV: 53.5
  • Tasting Notes: Dark fruit, wood, leather, honey, cinnamon, butterscotch, spice

19. A.H. Hirsch Reserve 16 Year Old Straight Bourbon Whiskey, Kentucky, USA

A.H. Hirsch Reserve 16 Year Old Straight Bourbon Whiskey is one of the most expensive bourbons in the world.

  • Average price: $8,292
  • ABV: 45.8%
  • Tasting Notes: Creamy vanilla, toffee, oak, baking spices

18. W.L. Weller 19 Year Old Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey, Kentucky, USA

W.L. Weller 19 Year Old Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey is one of the most expensive bourbons in the world.

  • Average price: $8,215
  • ABV: 45%
  • Tasting Notes: Oak, caramel, spice

17. Buffalo Trace Distillery O.F.C. Old Fashioned Copper Bourbon Whiskey, Kentucky, USA

Buffalo Trace Distillery O.F.C. Old Fashioned Copper Bourbon Whiskey is one of the most expensive bourbons in the world.

  • Average price: $8,763
  • ABV: 45.5%
  • Tasting Notes: Dark chocolate, tobacco leaves, dates, leather, black pepper, cinnamon

16. Mic Drop Single Barrel 13 Year Old Straight Bourbon Whiskey, Indiana, USA

Mic Drop Single Barrel 13 Year Old Straight Bourbon Whiskey is one of the most expensive bourbons in the world.

  • Average price: $8,615
  • ABV: 55.5%
  • Tasting Notes: Toasted grain, chocolate, charred citrus, caramel, vanilla, barrel char

15. Willett Family Estate Bottled Single-Barrel 21 Year Old Straight Bourbon Whiskey, Kentucky, USA

Willett Family Estate Bottled Single-Barrel 21 Year Old Straight Bourbon Whiskey is one of the most expensive bourbons in the world.

  • Average price: $12,133
  • ABV: 53.5%
  • Tasting Notes: Cocoa, honey, pipe tobacco

14. Weller’s Antique Reserve 10 Year Old Straight Bourbon Whiskey, Kentucky, USA

Weller's Antique Reserve 10 Year Old Straight Bourbon Whiskey is one of the most expensive bourbons in the world.

  • Average price: $11,266
  • ABV: 55%
  • Parent Company: The Sazerac Company

13. Colonel E.H. Taylor Warehouse C Tornado Surviving Straight Kentucky Bourbon Whiskey, Kentucky, USA

Colonel E.H. Taylor Warehouse C Tornado Surviving Straight Kentucky Bourbon Whiskey is one of the most expensive bourbons in the world.

  • Average price: $11,918
  • ABV: 50%
  • Tasting Notes: Jam-like fruit, vanilla, touches of smoke, tobacco

12. A.H. Hirsch Finest Reserve 20 Year Old Straight Bourbon Whiskey, Kentucky, USA

A.H. Hirsch Finest Reserve 20 Year Old Straight Bourbon Whiskey is one of the most expensive bourbons in the world.

  • Average price: $13,120
  • ABV: 45.8%
  • Tasting Notes: Caramel, orange peel, leather, slight pepper

11. Michter’s 25 Year Old Single Barrel Bourbon Whiskey, USA

Michter's 25 Year Old Single Barrel Bourbon Whiskey is one of the most expensive bourbons in the world.

  • Average price: $12,706
  • ABV: 58.1%
  • Tasting Notes: Molasses, holiday spice, chocolate, smoke roasted nuts, dried fruit, melted butter, vanilla

10. Elmer T. Lee ‘90th Birthday Edition’ Single Barrel Sour Mash Bourbon Whiskey, Kentucky, USA

Elmer T. Lee '90th Birthday Edition' Single Barrel Sour Mash Bourbon Whiskey is one of the most expensive bourbons in the world.

Released to markets in 2009, this expression was distilled to celebrate the 90th birthday of the late Elmer T. Lee, who served as Buffalo Trace’s first master distiller. The whiskey is rumored to be distilled from Buffalo Trace’s elusive mash bill #2, their “high-rye” mash bill.

  • Average price: $13,183
  • ABV: $45
  • Tasting Notes: Rye spice, vanilla, fruit undertones

9. Willett Family Estate Bottled Single-Barrel 16 Year Old Straight Bourbon Whiskey, Kentucky, USA

Willett Family Estate Bottled Single-Barrel 16 Year Old Straight Bourbon Whiskey is one of the most expensive bourbons in the world.

Distilled on June 4, 1993, every bottle of Willett Family Estate Bottled Single-Barrel 16 Year Old is non-chilled and unfiltered. The limited-edition whiskey is sold in a decanter that comes wrapped in lush purple silk.

  • Average price: $13,371
  • ABV: 50.6%
  • Tasting Notes: Pine, eucalyptus, toffee apple

8. Eagle Rare ‘Double Eagle Very Rare’ 20 Year Old Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey, Kentucky, USA

Eagle Rare 'Double Eagle Very Rare' 20 Year Old Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey is one of the most expensive bourbons in the world.

A must-try whiskey on many bourbon lovers’ lists, Double Eagle Very Rare is aged for twice as long as the standard Eagle Rare, lending itself to a softer, more robust drinking experience. The whiskey is housed in a crystal decanter featuring an eagle as the stopper, which comes packaged in a silver-etched box that specifies its bottle number and which batch the whiskey comes from.

  • Average price: $17,240
  • ABV: 45%
  • Tasting Notes: Vanilla, toasted oak, caramel

7. The Last Drop 1980 Buffalo Trace Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whisky, Kentucky, USA

The Last Drop 1980 Buffalo Trace Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey is one of the most expensive bourbons in the world.

Hailing from the Buffalo Trace Distillery in Frankfort, Ky., The Last Drop 1980 was distilled in — you guessed it — 1980 by then master distiller, Gary Gayheart. Years later, the recipe was uncovered by current master distiller Harlan Wheatley who then aged the spirit for about 20 years before releasing just 240 bottles for sale.

  • Average price: $16,162
  • ABV: 45%
  • Tasting Notes: Figs, dates, maraschino cherries, wood, leather, tobacco, toffee, gentle warming spice

6. Michter’s Celebration Sour Mash Whiskey, Kentucky, USA

Michter's Celebration Sour Mash Whiskey is one of the most expensive bourbons in the world.

In the 1970s and 1980s, Sour Mash Whiskey was Michter’s top selling product. After being discontinued in 1989, the brand relaunched the product in 2012 as Michter’s Celebration Sour Mash. The whiskey was produced by Micher’s master distiller, Willie Pratt, who blended all of Michter’s best bourbon and ryes aged from young to 30 years old to create just 273 bottles of Michter’s Celebration. Every gold-etched bottle is waxed and sealed, and includes a hand-signed letter from Willie Pratt himself.

  • Average price: $24,142
  • ABV: 43%
  • Tasting Notes: Toasted brown sugar, spiced smoky fruit, candied cherries, honeyed vanilla

5. Colonel E.H. Taylor Old Fashioned Sour Mash Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey, Kentucky, USA

Colonel E.H. Taylor Old Fashioned Sour Mash Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey is one of the most expensive bourbons in the world.

Colonel E.H. Taylor Old Fashioned Sour Mash was distilled in 2002 as an homage to Edmund Haynes Taylor Jr., who was widely known to have used the sour mash process in the 1800s when he was distilling. Meant to be a new aged bourbon serving as a replication of the historic technique, the grains used in each bottle were set aside to sour naturally to lower the pH prior to distilling.

  • Average price: $26,394
  • ABV: 50%
  • Tasting Notes: Fresh honey, leather

4. Old Rip Van Winkle ‘Pappy Van Winkle’s Family Reserve’ 17 Year Old Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey, Kentucky, USA

Old Rip Van Winkle 'Pappy Van Winkle's Family Reserve' 17 Year Old Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey is one of the most expensive bourbons in the world.

Originally casked in 1974, the whiskey is rumored to have originated at the Boone Distillery in Boone County, Ky. Two versions of the whiskey exist today: one that was bottled in 1990 at 16 years old, and this expression, bottled in 1991 at 17 years old. Pappy Van Winkle’s Family Reserve 17 Year Old actually replicated Maker’s Mark iconic melting red wax stopper, which Van Winkle claims he got away with using due to the trademark only being registered in the United States.

  • Average price: $29,999
  • ABV: 50.5%
  • Parent Company: Buffalo Trace

3. Old Rip Van Winkle ‘Pappy Van Winkle’s Family Selection’ 23 Year Old Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey with Glasses and Decanter, Kentucky, USA

Old Rip Van Winkle 'Pappy Van Winkle's Family Selection' 23 Year Old Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey with Glasses and Decanter is one of the most expensive bourbons in the world.

Distilled from a wheated bourbon recipe, Old Rip Van Winkle’s ‘Pappy Van Winkle’s Family Selection’ 23 Year Old set a record in December 2022 as the most expensive bottle ever sold at New York’s Sotheby’s auction house. The bottle, which sold for 17 times the presale estimate of $3,000 to $4,000, fetched an impressive $52,000. Originally released in 2008, each bottle of Pappy Van Winkle’s Family Selection 23 Year Old was sold encased in a luxe black velvet bag.

  • Average price: $35,155
  • ABV: 47.8%
  • Tasting Notes: Candy corn, vanilla, cherry, walnut, dark raspberry, oak

2. Redemption 36 Year Old Barrel Proof Straight Bourbon Whiskey, USA

Redemption 36 Year Old Barrel Proof Straight Bourbon Whiskey is one of the most expensive bourbons in the world.

With just 18 bottles in existence, Redemption 36 Year Old is one of the most rare whiskies to be featured on this list. Distilled in 1978, each bottle comes with a wood stopper embedded with a penny from that same year which is meant to serve as a “lucky penny for those who take ownership of it,” according to the brand.

  • Average price: $36,566
  • ABV: 48.8%
  • Tasting Notes: Dried orange, cinnamon, anise, sweet smoke, cherry wood, barbecue

1. Old Rip Van Winkle 25 Year Old Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey, Kentucky, USA

Old Rip Van Winkle 25 Year Old Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey is the most expensive bourbon in the world.

Launched in 2017, Old Rip Van Winkle 25 Year Old is one of the most sought-after whiskies in the world and was distilled in 1989 at the now closed Van Winkle family distillery in Shively, Ky. There, it was aged from 1989 until 2002 when it was relocated to the Buffalo Trace Distillery after they acquired the label. At Buffalo Trace, it rested in its original casks until 2014 before it was moved into stainless steel tanks to prevent further aging. Just 11 barrels were distilled — amounting to 710 bottles — all of which are packaged in handmade glass decanters packaged in wood from the original oak barrels.

  • Average price: $53,712
  • ABV: 50%
  • Tasting Notes: Predominant oak, sugar, caramel, vanilla