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Friday, February 4, 2022

Jack Daniel's 10 year old Tennessee Whiskey, 2021 edition

Jack Daniel’s Old No. 7 is my least favorite whisk(e)y in the world, and has been for a quarter century. (I can't believe I just wrote those last two words.) Even back when I was just chasing shots with the cheapest beer I could find, JD was just too foul for my face. That combo of the corn, the charcoal and the Brown-Forman appealed less than plastic bottle vodka.

So there was not a more surprised person on the planet than I when JD's single barrel products turned to be......drinkable. I'm not sure how I feel about a world in which I'd consider purchasing a Jack Daniel's product. But, I'm pretty sure Jack Daniel's 10 year old (not single barrel) has sold out already, so I'll give it a try without worry!

Brand: Jack Daniel's
Ownership: Brown-Forman Corporation
Region: Lynchburg, TN
Mashbill: 80% corn, 12% malted barley, 8% rye
Age: at least 10 years old
Bottled: 2021
Outturn: around 24,000 bottles
Alcohol by Volume: 48.5%
(from a bottle split)


The nose begins with bags of cherry lollipops and plenty of barrel char to spare. The cherry note moves  quickly to the fore, and a pretty floral note builds with time. Smaller of notes of Tabasco and mustard linger in the background. A berry gummy bear note appears after more than 20 minutes.

Gentle wood smoke, tart oranges and a lot of black pepper register first in the palate. Then the nose's cherries and flowers appear in the background, along with mildly tart apples. It never takes on any generic tannic nor barrel char notes, but the texture is very thin even at this strength.

It finishes with a mix of black pepper and sweet citrus. It's never too sugary, nor too oaky.


Despite what other reviewers have found, my senses picked up no banana notes, which is a very big plus, pushing this to the fore of JD whiskies. The pepperiness showed through in the old fashioned that I, er, fashioned with half of this sample, and I kinda liked it. What holds this whiskey back is that watery texture. It's so thin in the mouth, and limits any expansion or development. So one is left with a light, pretty bourbon. I know I'm speaking to the ether here, but I'd be interested in this whiskey at half its suggested retail price (or 1/10th of its secondary market price).

Availability - Not at its suggested retail price
Pricing - Not its suggested retail price
Rating - 83 ← the highest score I'll probably ever give a Jack Daniel's whiskey