Last month, the folks at Jim Beam invited me to their party as part of London Cocktail Week. Unable to make it and absolutely gutted at the fact, they sent me a bottle of their Double Oak Twice Barrelled to try out.
As a whiskey lover, I tried different varieties of Jim Beam in the past, including Red Stag and Apple and their premixed Cola drink. However, Jim Beam’s Double Oak is aged in American charred white oak barrels before being poured into another charred barrel to mature for a second time. The interaction with the oak wood results in an intense wood and spice flavour which is smooth in taste. The Double Oak is part of Beam’s new premium range and packaged as such featuring embossed glass and textured labelling amongst other things to compete against other brands on the market.
The Jim Beam family have a long history in the whiskey industry, with their first distillery dating back to 1795 founded in Washington County, Kentucky by Jacob Boehm. Boehm was a German immigrant whose surname was later Americanised to Beam. Their current distillery was founded after the Prohibition in the United States, closed in the town of Clermont in 1933. Currently run by the seventh generation of his family, Master Distiller Fred Noe, great grandson of Colonel James B Beam who have his name to the brand.
Double Oak is bottled at 43% ABV. The colour, whilst similar to other whiskies, is a deep golden yellow with a slight hint of brown. A strong intense of vanilla, toffee and wood spices immediately hit upon first taste. Further aromas of orange peel, caramel and cinnamon follow, making this the perfect drink to form part of a Hot Toddy.
Tasting this neat before mixing it with coca cola or lemonade, the finish is increasingly spicy once the sweet of butterscotch and toffee notes have faded. The wood spice spends time lingering warming the mouth and chest.
Served best as I said earlier as a Hot Toddy, ideal for a cold, or as a chilled drink over rocks either by itself or mixed with lemonade or coca cola, this whiskey has fast become my favourite and I will be buying another bottle to enjoy over the festive period, drinking responsibly of course!