Most people have preconceived notions about Jim Beam. It typically stems from college when it’s the best stuff you can afford but leads to a myriad of bad experiences and unnecessary fights. Jim Beam Single Barrel will make you forget all of that.
Beam has an entire line of small batch whiskeys that cater to every taste in full-flavored bourbon, but Booker’s, Baker’s, Basil Hayden’s and the apostrophe-free Knob Creek have all existed independently of Beam in the public eye. Now Beam is finally bringing their flagship whiskey to the big boy table.
Jim Beam will always be a blue collar brand. That’s the market they intend to serve, and they’ve grown a huge collection of loyal customers from it. Blue collar drinkers aren’t looking for frills, but they doesn’t me they don’t like high quality, fall-flavored booze. Jim beam Single Barrel seems to be the reward for those loyal customers. At just $35, this mid-tier bourbon that is a huge step up from Jim Beam White Label while still maintaining the core essence of the spirit that so many people love.
While White Label is aged four years, Single Barrel spends five to six in the barrel. It gets priority in terms of the barrels’ rackhouse location as well which, along with expert tasting along the way, helps create consistency across the spirit. There’s no blending to make things taste the same so each selection has to be just right when they bottle it, and only about 1 in 150 make the cut.
Jim Beam Single Barrel goes into the bottle at a very upgraded 95-proof, which is both perfect for the spirit and a tribute to the 1795 introduction of Beam. It brings a ton of flavor to the table without adding unnecessary heat. There’s virtually no burn on the way down, and I probably wouldn’t drink it any other way than neat or with a couple rocks.
The point of this spirit isn’t to change the bourbon game. Jim Beam Single Barrel looks to capitalize on a huge stock of spirits by plucking some of the best barrels for the mid-level consumer. It’s sure to please Beam loyalists as well as anyone looking for a great boubon at a very reasonable price.