The Colorado company is flying the local colors with its latest limited edition. (photo by Amy Lynch for Wine and Whiskey Globe)

Breckenridge Distillery is at it again. Following the success and fanfare of last year’s collaboration with the Denver Broncos, the Colorado-based operation has recently released two new limited-edition bottles going head to head for bragging rights. Whisky magazine named last year’s collab Best American Blended Whiskey, Limited Release and Campaign Innovator of the Year at the World Whiskies Awards.

Two players have put their stamps of approval on the Mile High Blends for the 2022 contest—Broncos alumni QB Jake Plummer and linebacker Karl Mecklenburg, working with assists from Breckenridge’s head distiller Hans Stafsholt and founder Bryan Nolt respectively. The resulting “Blue” and “Orange” bourbons arrive in commemorative bottles labeled with the Broncos’ classic 1962 logo.

The blends offer completely different tasting experiences. The Blue Batch #1 (Plummer and Stafsholt’s effort) delivers a sweet fruity nose with notes of fresh apple, honeysuckle, and creamy Dreamsicle with just a touch of spice at the finish. There are no notes of mushroom. Mecklenburg and Nolt’s Orange Batch #3, on the other hand, isn’t overly sweet, boasting a gingery nose and spicy flavor impressions of fruitcake, clove, rye, and cracked black pepper.

Fans can pick up both to sample, then vote for their favorite, thereby earning a chance to win tickets to the Breckenridge Bourbon Whiskey Suite at Empower Field at Mile High for the Broncos vs. Chargers game in January. 

So which blend is the big winner in our opinion? It all depends on how you plan to drink it. For sipping neat or on the rocks, we’d go with Blue Batch 1 to enjoy its clear flavors and subtle nuance. But for cocktails, the bolder notes of Orange Batch 3 stand up better to mixers like sodas, juices and vermouth. On any given Sunday, it’s up to you.