Jack Daniels Today

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Re: Jack Daniels Today

Unread postby bourbonv » Fri Jul 17, 2009 12:43 pm

Gary,
I tried the Jack Daniel's Old No. 7 the other day at the Bourbon's Bistro. I agree with you that the "banana" was for the most part missing from the drink. I could still detect traces of it after it had opened up for about 30 minutes, but as a whole, no banana. I also found it less complicated and frankly, less interesting of a pour. It had to open up before even the smokiness became part of the drink. I found it a little watery and thin.
Mike Veach
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Re: Jack Daniels Today

Unread postby Kinsey Worker » Fri Jul 17, 2009 8:18 pm

Gary,
I read your Review of Jack Daniels Black Label and decided to give it a try. I had not had any Jack Daniels for 30 Years and there always seemed to be something I did not like about it.
Well, Tonight I went out and bought a 375 ML of Black Label to try and I find it to be a nice smooth easy Drinking Whiskey.
very different then the way it used to be.

If this is the way it is going to stay, I will buy and drink more of it, it is very nice to sip with ice and a cold Bottle of Beer and I am very Glad you wrote about your tastings!
Kinsey Worker - Dave
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Re: Jack Daniels Today

Unread postby gillmang » Mon Jul 20, 2009 7:59 am

Thanks gents for your views and comments. Mike, I know what you are saying about lightness, but I do not agree that the whiskey is not as good as before: au contraire!

I would prefer this exact profile at a higher proof (100, say, or 90 anyway). But I will take it as is because the flavor is very good and this is now an excellent whiskey to drink neat. Since I often add water to higher proof whiskeys, I don't mind so much the low proof. Also, I find it good at certain times, when you don't want a big bruiser whiskey (late at night say, or near to dinner). I wonder if current Jack SB also is tasting like the current Old No. 7. If it is, this will take care of the proof/lightness side of things. I may get a recent bottling soon.

Gary
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Re: Jack Daniels Today

Unread postby helios » Fri Sep 04, 2009 6:24 pm

I'm always surprised at the amount of Jack Black lore still here with us. Isn't JDB so '70's? Just seeing that iconic label reminds me of being an Ohio college kid in the 70's. Going to over rated parties with, in gravel driveways, Trans Ams Firebirds ( bird decal on the hood), Olds Cutlass Supreme convertibles, KC and the Sunshine Band music blaring through Kenwood speakers and.... 23 guys, 7 girls. Hasn't JD been surpassed by the Single Barrels, and the new innovative bottlings now available?

Jack Black WAS the cool drink, but how long ago was that? Are we still playing backgammon in fern bars and wearing leisure suits?

I've tried JDB lately, is it really that good? After all those 'aw shucks ads in magazines, several corporate changes, and marketing efforts, is Jack Daniel's still relevant? Haven't we all progressed to better and more refined spirits?

John in Annapolis
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Re: Jack Daniels Today

Unread postby gillmang » Fri Sep 04, 2009 7:40 pm

Interesting perspective. Jack Daniels however is a storied name in American whiskey. It became famous for a reason - quality. It is true that by the 70's it reached a peak of fashionability - and since then sales have only grown. But that success was built, initially at least, on quality. In recent decades, the whiskey seemed to me lesser than I recalled from the 70's (a great era, and you evoked it well). And when the palate seemed to reset recently, it got my attention.

Are there better whiskeys out there? Yes, but Jack always had its own profile - a Tennessee whiskey for one thing - and it was a contender, and is again in my view. I would much prefer that the current profile would become available at 90 or 100 proof though - that would cap its revival. If, as I anticipate, the Single Barrel (94 proof) will disclose the same taste as current bottlings of Old No. 7, that will be recompense enough.

Another aspect of this for me is to follow the palate of a long-established American whiskey - to see where it goes for better or worse. I find that of interest unto itself.

Gary
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Re: Jack Daniels Today

Unread postby silverfish » Fri Sep 04, 2009 8:26 pm

gillmang wrote:Are there better whiskeys out there? Yes, but Jack always had its own profile


I think this is part of the answer when helios asks "...is Jack Daniel's
still relevant? ". I think Jack projects a certain "attitude" which may
account for some of the popularity. It's not at the cheap end and
there are certainly more expensive pours out there but maybe it's
just cool to say you drink JD.

Do I drink JD? Yep. Does it make me cool? Heh, probably gonna
take more than that to make me cool...
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Re: Jack Daniels Today

Unread postby gillmang » Sat Sep 05, 2009 12:00 am

I understand what you are saying but at this point (really speaking of my age here) I am abstracted completely from ideas of what is fashionable.

I will drink Jack again because I like it.

Gary
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Re: Jack Daniels Today

Unread postby helios » Sat Sep 05, 2009 7:26 am

Thanks gillmang and silverfish for picking up my thoughts. It was fun writing my 1970's evocative piece, my girlfriend got a laugh out of it. Your comments made me think--JD is still a factor, and yes, just saying "Jack and..." will always have a ring to it.

But...hasn't Jack Black Label's whiskey mashbill, distilling techniques, quality control been sacrificed over the years--is JD just riding on that hip name? --is this a way to make customers reach for their Gentleman label and their other higher priced offerings?

Have a super holiday weekend
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Re: Jack Daniels Today

Unread postby gillmang » Sat Sep 05, 2009 8:27 am

Jack Daniels is still produced in a traditional way and I enjoyed my recent visit to the distillery (I didn't tour all of it but did see the main reception center and the film they show before the tour - we hadn't time for the full gig). They used a corn-heavy mash bill, they distill under 160 proof and filter the whiskey in maple charcoal and then let it age 4-6 years in new charred oak. But in recent years, the whiskey seemed quite feisty to me in taste - not bland but the opposite, quite fruity in a banana or other yellow fruit way, and with a particular oaky-earthy note that seemed part of the signature. It mixed well with cola but I would not have considered it a great drink for neat sipping. In the 1950's and through the 70's, it was I believe better-tasting. The proof drops (from 90 to the present 80) were part of it but not the full story in my view, since the Single Barrel of Jack until about a year ago or so had the same profile. I started noticing a superior taste in the single barrels starting around January 2008. And now I see it in the regular black label, simple as that. The earthy notes are not too strong, the banana esters are absent or at least not as prominent and before, and it just has a good rounded full bourbon-like taste. As another member of the board observed recently, the maple notes seem to come through more to the advantage of the product. The black label stays at 80 proof, it but tastes good. I believe at 90-100 proof it would taste great, and am hoping that current releases of the Single Barrel will show this quality.
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Re: Jack Daniels Today

Unread postby PaulO » Sun Sep 06, 2009 12:28 pm

When I was in TN a few years ago they had several different commemoritive bottles of JD that were filled with the regular JD, except at 90 proof in keeping with the retro theme. I wouldn't be surprized if some of these still turn up as dusties.
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