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It’s Time To Review Of The World’s Best-Selling American Whiskey — Jack Daniel’s Old No. 7

Jack Daniel’s Old No. 7 Tennessee Whiskey is the world’s best-selling American whiskey. The classic Black Label version of Jack is so popular that rock stars like Lemmy Kilmister lived on the whiskey and Frank Sinatra was buried with a bottle (with his own personal Jack Daniel’s distributor sitting with Ol’ Blue Eye’s immediate family at his funeral). The brand from Tennessee is also far more wide-ranging than just Old No. 7. There’s a killer American single malt, new Bonded and Triple Mash versions, special high-proof bottlings, a version made specifically for Sinatra, older age statement versions, and single barrel versions galore.

But how does the OG version really taste? Should it only be relegated to the iconic Jack and Coke? Or does that legendary sugar maple charcoal filtration (the famed Lincoln County Process) really make it a viable sipper?

I’m going to find out by taking a deep dive into this illustrious yet very accessible (and cheap AF) bourbon. Yes, it’s bourbon. Here’s a detailed explainer on how this Tennesse whiskey is also bourbon whiskey. Okay, let’s dive into what’s actually in the bottle.

Also Read: The Top 5 UPROXX Bourbon Posts Of The Last Six Months

Jack Daniel’s Old No. 7 Tennessee Whiskey

Jack Daniel's Whiskey Review

ABV: 40%

Average Price: $20

The Whiskey:

Jack Daniel’s is made in Tullahoma, Tennessee, in a small holler about an hour-and-half from Nashville. The cool forested valleys provide shade for the distillery while the hills offer perches for rickhouses to hold barrels. The kicker is that the Tullahoma has a 2-mile-long cave system that provides unique spring water for the whiskey-making process at Jack Daniel’s — and keeps things extra cool in the area.

Jack Daniel’s also propagates their own yeast and lactobacillus for fermenting their mash bill of 80% corn, 8% rye, and 12% malted barley. That mashed juice is then sent through massive column stills before it’s slowly dripped through 10 feet of pebbly sugar maple charcoal, which is also made on-site at Tullahoma, from local lumber.

Very long story short, that filtering process strips the hot distillate of the harsher grain oils and flavor notes, leaving the brighter and fruitier yeast notes as the star of the whiskey and more readily available to bond with the wood sugars from the barrel. There is of course far more to it than that but that’s the biggest bullet point to take away.

After the filtering process, the whiskey is barreled in new oak with a deep #4 char. After about four years and up to seven years, barrels are selected for a batch of Old No. 7 and dumped into a vatting tank to rest. Finally, the whiskey is proofed with some of that iconic water and bottled.

Tasting Notes:

Nose: Buttery banana bread with walnuts and raisins (with a hint of the cardboard box they came in) dominate the nose with a light hint of old cinnamon powder (kind of like an empty spice jar) next to the faintest hint of chewing tobacco just kissed with cherry and apple.

Palate: The palate is thin, there’s no getting around that thanks to the proofing water. But it also presents as lush banana milkshake cut with fresh vanilla and dusted with nutmeg and maybe a faint hint of old milk chocolate over some very mild oakiness.

Finish: The proofing water really amps up on the finish as the flavor washes out, leaving you with a sense of an empty apple pin tin, hints of banana bread, and an echo of cherry pipe tobacco.

Bottom Line:

This is pretty simple and fruity overall but does have a well-rounded flavor profile. The issue — and why it’s most often mixed with Coke or ginger ale — is that the finish barely exists beneath all that proofing water. What’s the solution to that? Buy a Jack Daniel’s Bonded. It’s the same thing at 50% ABV. It rules.

But we’re not here to talk about Jack Daniel’s Bonded. Old No. 7 is really all about those highballs with Coke or soda. The team at Jack Daniel’s knows that and leans into it. The fruits are pronounced enough to really add something to a spicy Coke, sharp ginger ale, or fresh lemonade. It’s utilitarian and you feel it through and through when you drink Jack Daniel’s Old No. 7.


80/100 — This is a solid B whiskey. Trust me when I say that there’s a metric shitton of terrible whiskeys out there that taste far worse than this. This is a solid B because it delivers exactly what’s promised while being 100% easy to source everywhere on earth (seriously) and very cheap whenever you do find it.