The Jim Beam Double Oak review
Company: Jim Beam
Classification: Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey
Breakdown: 77% corn, 13% rye, 10% malted barley
We first published this review way back in the year 2016, where kids played hopscotch in the streets, a pint of milk cost two and a half English Pennies, and the Americans had just landed on the moon. Ah they were good old days…
Since the review went up Jim Beam has now streamline its entry level bottle designs as we hinted at, so now all Beam labelled bottles resemble the one the Double Oak launched with. Personally the Gents approve of the new design, including the way they make the screw tops look like corks. Sneaky!
Subsequently, since the review, Jim Beam have now released some material on the Double Oak and confirmed that it is indeed aged for 4 years (like the White Label) before being aged for the second time in, again, new oak casks. However, they still have not revealed how long the second ageing process is for. So your guess is as good as ours.
So what did we think of the Double Oak back in 2016? Let’s find out …
A new addition to the Jim Beam range which was first released for general consumption in the UK in September 2016. However It was made available earlier in the year for the travel retail market. There is not an awful lot of information about this bourbon on their official website. We believe that it is basically the Jim Beam White Label, which after maturing in new oak barrels for 4 years, is then transferred into another oak barrel (doesn’t say that it is new) for an undetermined length of time for additional ageing. If the Gents had to have an educated guess (don’t laugh), we would say this time was anywhere between 6-18 months. The bottle comes in a nice presentation box and the stubby shape and labelling of the bottle are both new styles compared to the normal JB bottles. On this note the entire Jim Beam range is due for a complete overhaul very soon, so look out for the new designs in a store near you.
For this review we drank it neat in a Glencairn glass
What we got - Dry wood (presumably oak), banoffe pie (Mr Pie), cherry tart and sweetness
What they say we should get - Rich notes of caramel and vanilla with hints of toasted wood
What we got – The dryness of wood follows on from the nose, it has a very slight spicy taste with echoes of burnt cherry (Mav). We would say smooth but we’ve decided never to use that word!
What they say we should get – Intense caramel and toffee flavours with a distinctive spiced oakiness
What we got – An average finish but it does appear to stick around on the tongue rather than the throat
What they say we should get - Long strings of caramel, oak, spice, leather and frosting slip on by
For only 3% more ABV than the normal Jim Beam White label (40%) you can definitely taste the kick of the alcohol that certainly is missing from the standard offering. The professional reviewers are constantly calling out caramel for this bourbon on the nose, palate and finish. We don’t really nail that but do agree on the sweet and spice flavourings. This bourbon is a permanent addition to the Jim Beam family and has seen a huge product push in the UK so is now available in all good supermarkets (and some terrible ones too).
In our opinion it is great timing by Jim Beam to introduce this bourbon during the UK boom. There is certainly room in the marketplace for this mid-price bourbon and sits nicely in both a price and quality perspective alongside Bulleit, Wild Turkey and their own Devil’s Cut.
5 out of 10 - Mav
5 out of 10 – Mr. Pie