Four Jim Beam Whiskeys
Bourbon, Devil’s Cut, Honey & Red Stag
Jim Beam is brand of bourbon whiskey produced in Clermont, Kentucky by Beam Suntory. It was one of the best selling brands of bourbon in the world in 2008. Originally started by a group of German immigrants who moved to America during the eighteenth century who changed their name from Böhm to the more Anglo-American ‘Beam’.
I check out four of the whiskeys from their range…
Jim Beam (White Label)
Info: Aged 4 years, 40% ABV, their flagship whiskey.
Nose: Similar to what I found in Makers Mark the initial nose after a pour is quite recognisable, the barley and wood content no doubt reminding me of a Scotch. Soon however the nose opens up and the bourbon nature comes out with rye and corn smooth sweetness.
Palate: Very easy on the palate at first with a pinch of spices growing after a while. However the overall flavours are a sweet vanilla edge which works together with the rye to smooth out too many of the corn notes that I often don’t like so much.
Finish: The corn notes appear here more along with a bit of pepper and lots of sweetness.
Thoughts: A good bourbon for £16, it’s quite enjoyable neat, but also would work well as a mixer with lots of things.
Available: Master of Malt – £16.75
Jim Beam Devil’s Cut
Info: Aged 6 years, uses extracted bourbon reclaimed from the walls of the cask after pouring. 45% ABV.
Nose: The notes from above are all relevant, but there’s definitely a little more subtle, aged sweetness here, a touch more grown up.
Palate: The mouthfeel here is slightly thicker from the above notes, but otherwise it’s similar – except on steroids, it’s older, a little more floral, with much more of a cask char there underlying everything. Corn notes seem more exaggerated here.
Finish: More subtly sweet and with a longer peppery note that hangs around for quite a good while.
Thoughts: It’s the bigger, older brother to above and defo the one to pick given the choice of either.
Available: Master of Malt – £25.49
Jim Beam Honey
Info: Jim Beam have taken their Bourbon and golden honey, and created this honey whiskey liqueur. 35% ABV.
Nose: First impressions on the nose are Jim Bean smoothness with a little more sweetness to it maybe. Not overtly honey.
Palate: On the palate however honey is pretty much the first thing that greets you, with a much watered down Jim Beam backing that up. It’s interesting, it’s liqueury and it’s very sweet.
Finish: Very very sweet and corn backing that up.
Thoughts: Some people would love this, it’d work well as a mixer, or with lots of ice. However on it’s own it’s really too sweet for me.
Available: Master of Malt – £20.48
Jim Beam Red Stag – Black Cherry
Info: Jim Beam infused with the natural essence of Black Cherry. 40% ABV.
Nose: Rich, cereally and packed with black cherries like a cake.
Palate: Thick, sweet and similar to the nose with the cereals (corn, barley, etc) and the thick black cherries splashed over everything. It’s like a grown up liquid cake. Maybe this should go over ice cream!
Finish: Thick, slightly cloying. Sweet, although nicer than the honey sweetness of the previous review.
Thoughts: It’s a bit like some sort of grown up medicine. I could imagine it working well as a mixer or with lots of ice, but on it’s own it’s not really for me. The higher ABV than the Honey is good however.
Available: Master of Malt – £21.80
Thanks to Jim Beam for the samples.