J.W. Dant Olde Bourbon (Heaven Hill)
Distilled at Heaven Hill, there’s really not all that much I can tell you about the J.W. Dant Olde Bourbon. Except for the history of this brand, which goes back quite a while.
Most interestingly, the brand is named after Joseph Washington Dant, a Kentucky distiller from the 1830s. He was known for making whisky in a log still, an old-time method from when money for proper stills was tight.
A section of tree trunk would be hollowed out with a copper pipe running through it. The hollowed section would be filled with fermented mash, while steam was fed through the pipe to start distillation. This method of distilling was called “running the log”. That’s right, they don’t make ’em like that anymore.
But, quirky stories aside, I know shit all about the make-up of the current whisky. It’s bourbon, it’s fairly cheap, but that’s what you’ll have to do with.
J.W. Dant Olde Bourbon (40%, Heaven Hill)
Nose: Some soft citrus notes, mostly lemon, and whispers of caramelized peach. Plenty of oak shavings, some vanilla and a hint of marzipan.
Taste: Creamy, slightly salty (there’s a surprise), and plenty of oak, caramel and bitter oranges. Finally some soft spices, mainly some cracked black peppercorns.
Finish: Lingering spiciness, with subtle notes of chocolate.
Pleasant and full-bodied, especially for a spirit bottled at the absolute minimum alcohol percentage. Yeah, this does not disappoint.
Photo: The Whisky Exchange
Thijs is a spirits writer and accredited liquorist from The Netherlands. He runs the blog Words of Whisky and contributes to a number of Dutch and international publications.