As a nod to the 4th July I thought I’d review an American Whiskey for a change. A great plan, however the only candidate I could find in our cupboard was the ubiquitous Jack Daniel’s Tennessee Whiskey.
I’m sure there aren’t that many people who drink spirits and have not tried JD (most likely mixed with coke in a bar or nightclub), but I’ve never actually taken the time to properly ‘taste’ it.
With slight trepidation, here goes…
If this was Scotch, you’d assume caramel had been used to adjust the colour as it’s quite rich, however the Tennessee Whiskey rules prevent this so it’s apparently all from the cask.
Sweet maple syrup, quite cloying. There’s a bit of smoke, a little spice and an oily alcohol smell which I couldn’t place, but it’s not a great nose.
Reducing with water doesn’t really change the nose, just dilutes the smells.
Sweet, creamy flavour; light brown sugar instead of syrup. Slight walnut dryness comes through in the finish but it’s quite thin throughout and the finish is very short.
Adding water washes away the flavour that was there, but also introduces a slight TCP alcohol burn in the finish; very odd.
There’s a great comment on the Master of Malt page that ‘Kinda like McDonalds, you know what you are gonna get worldwide.’ and that describes Jack Daniel’s Original No 7 to a tee.
This is a simple, mass-produced whisky which is happiest when being knocked back or combined with a mixer.
Comparing it to an older single malt is unfair and ultimately a bit of a waste of time.
After drinking a lot of JD & Coke at University, it’s not something necessarily I’d reach for now as I find it a bit too sweet and cloying.
That said, I’m going to try and seek out some of the other expressions in the Jack Daniels range to try and compare (all in the interests of research you understand!); this one however is going back in the cocktail cupboard.