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Dave_in_Canada
11-20-2003, 13:32
There have been a number of posts over the last few months which have prompted my post here.

When mentioning JD or Dickel, some members are corrected with the statement that TN whiskey is not a bourbon.

I understand that alot of SB.com members are seriously committed to bourbon, and upholding it's merit. But I'd like to seriously ask the question: technically, isn't TN whiskey a bourbon?

Of course, bourbon can be made in Tennessee, as in any other state. But the two TN whiskeys currently on the market have chosen to be labelled TN whiskey (due to their production style, state of manufacture, etc.).

Doesn't the spirit in the bottle adhere to the true legal definition of bourbon?

When I'm in a liquor store or bar, and ask for their bourbon selection, I too am somewhat put-0ff when offered a JD. But is that wrong?

The attempts by TN distillers to make their product distinctive through this use of terminology seems to have worked with the JD brand, but I'm not convinced the marketplace chooses JD over any other because it IS or ISN'T a bourbon, (or a TN whiskey for that matter).

Is it simply a case of jealosy on the part of bourbon lovers that JD (ie. the swill in the bottle) has done so well?

Comments welcome.

jeff
11-20-2003, 13:40
Dave,

TN Whiskies would be bourbons if not for the "Lincoln County Process" of filtering the whisky through large vats of sugar maple charcoal. This is a process which mellows the whisky and imparts flavors from the wood into it. Bourbon can have no additional flavor components. That is why it is not a bourbon. Dickle adds vitamins to theirs http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/puke.gif

bobbyc
11-20-2003, 14:22
Actually a good case used to be made that it was, Lincoln County process notwithstanding. The real reason it is not Bourbon, is because the BATF says it isn't.

<font color="blue"> Good God Give John Mayer Some </font>

Dave_in_Canada
11-20-2003, 14:37
Jeff when you spell Dickel as Dickle, it makes me think of PICKLE juice. http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/lol.gif

jeff
11-20-2003, 15:17
Jeff when you spell Dickel as Dickle, it makes me think of PICKLE juice.



That would be an improvement http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/wink.gif

tdelling
11-20-2003, 15:20
&gt;But I'd like to seriously ask the question: technically, isn't TN whiskey
&gt;a bourbon?

I'm going to disagree with everyone.

I hereby declare that Jack Daniels could legally be sold as a bourbon.

I challenge anyone to find regulations otherwise.
Go to http://www.access.gpo.gov/ecfr/ and look at Title 27, Volume 1, Chapter 1, Part 5.

Jack Daniels meets all the requirements for "bourbon whiskey", and I can
find no reason to exclude it from this category.


Tim Dellinger

Dave_in_Canada
11-20-2003, 15:43
Here's the full regulations. So long as the Lincoln process doesn't remove the percentages described in 5.27 (c)

(c) Any filtering or stabilizing process which results in a product which does not possess the taste, aroma, and characteristics generally attributed to that class or type of distilled spirits; and, in the case*of straight whisky, results in the removal of more than 15 percent of*
the fixed acids, volatile acids, esters, soluble solids, or higher*alcohols, or more than 25 percent of the soluble color;

... then I would imagine that JD is a bourbon.

jeff
11-20-2003, 15:49
While not a regulation, I did find This Article (http://www.alliance-beverage.com/page.cfm?PageID=28) that seems to concure with my assertion. Lets dig deeper into this, I'm curious now.

Dave_in_Canada
11-20-2003, 15:51
Hey Bobbby. I did some snooping on the BATF website and couldn't find anything against charcoal filtering. After all, most bourbon goes through some filtering (many use charcoal, irrespective of whether it is maple or not) but the TN process is pre-aging. I can't find anything here (http://www.ttb.gov/regulations/27cfr5.html) that disallows charcoal "mellowing".

jeff
11-20-2003, 15:57
According to This Article (http://www.spiritsunlimited.com/archives_whiskey_fa98.php) Tennessee Whiskey doesn't have to be made with corn, so long as it is made with 51% of some grain, though we all know that it is corn being used.

jeff
11-20-2003, 18:38
I know this is very unscientific, but if you go to www.jackdaniels.com (http://www.jackdaniels.com) and take the online tour, one of the tour guides will tell you that it is the charcoal mellowing that makes JD a Tennesse whisky and not a bourbon.

Dave_in_Canada
11-20-2003, 18:52
it is the charcoal mellowing that makes JD a Tennesse whisky and not a bourbon



Jeff, they've been saying that all along, as part of their marketing pitch (along with any other TN distiller and the US government which gave them their own "appellation"). I'm just trying to find legal evidence that TN whiskey is NOT bourbon. But I think it might be a bourbon, but more specifically a TN whiskey.

tdelling
11-20-2003, 19:10
&gt;So long as the Lincoln process doesn't remove the percentages
&gt;described in 5.27 (c)
&gt;...
&gt;then I would imagine that JD is a bourbon.

If you look close at the language, I think the percents only apply
to "straight" whiskey.

Thus the percents would determine whether JD is a "straight bourbon whiskey"
or merely a "bourbon whiskey".



Looking at the other regulations:

I'm supposing that charcoal treatment isn't considered "treatment with wood",
so 5.39(c) doesn't apply.

I still haven't decided whether JD's charcoal could be considered a
"flavoring" under 5.23. That's a judgement call, and would be the only
reason I can think of to disqualify JD from being a bourbon. If the
process gives the whiskey an "ashy" taste, then it might be adding
flavor.


Tim Dellinger

ratcheer
11-20-2003, 20:33
I agree with you, Tim. And I will add two points: 1) The Tennessee whisky makers are trying to set themselves apart from bourbon by not referring to their product as bourbon and, 2) I have seen products (legally) labeled as Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey that state that they are "charcoal filtered".

A rose by any other name....

If it looks like a duck and quacks like a duck....

Tim

ratcheer
11-20-2003, 20:38
No, charcoal filtering does not add any flavoring. It removes impurities.

Tim

MurphyDawg
11-21-2003, 01:21
But havent we argued before that the sugar maple charcoal filetering BEFORE aging is a quick fix aginfg process. And wouldnt "aging" constitute adding flavor?? ALso I remember both BT &amp; HH mentioning "neutralized or actualized" charcoal, ie specificall mentioning they make their charcoal not to taste. JD's marketing at least implies their charcoal does.

TomC

jeff
11-21-2003, 06:23
Tim,

I think the charcoal filtering that KY Straight bourbon Whiskies are refering to is activated charcoal, which AFAIK doesn't impart anything into the whiskey. Sugar Maple Charcoal, again AFAIK, adds a subtle flavor to the finished product.

jeff
11-21-2003, 06:26
Thus the percents would determine whether JD is a "straight bourbon whiskey"
or merely a "bourbon whiskey".




Is there such a thing as a "bourbon whiskey" that is not a "straight whiskey"? I thought bourbon was a step further down the process, therefore to be a bourbon, it must first be a straight whiskey. Am I mistaken?

jbutler
11-21-2003, 06:49
Here's an excerpt from the BATF liquor regulations. From section 5.22, this pertains to the identity of "whisky". The entire document has been available here (http://www.straightbourbon.com/27cfr5.pdf) for years. (b)(1)(iii) is the part you are after Jeff.



b) Class 2; whisky.

"Whisky" is an alcoholic distillate from a fermented mash of grain produced at less
than 190 proof in such manner that the distillate possesses the taste, aroma, and
characteristics generally attributed to whisky, stored in oak containers (except that
corn whisky need not be so stored), and bottled at not less than 80 proof, and also
includes mixtures of such distillates for which no specific standards of identity are
prescribed.

(1)(i) "Bourbon whisky", "rye whisky", "wheat whisky", "malt whisky", or "rye
malt whisky" is whisky produced at not exceeding 160 proof from a
fermented mash of not less than 51 percent corn, rye, wheat, malted barley,
or malted rye grain, respectively, and stored at not more than 125 proof in
charred new oak containers; and also includes mixtures of such whiskies of
the same type.

(ii) "Corn whisky" is whisky produced at not exceeding 160 proof from a
fermented mash of not less than 80 percent corn grain, and if stored in oak
containers stored at not more than 125 proof in used or uncharred new oak
containers and not subjected in any manner to treatment with charred wood;
and also includes mixtures of such whisky.

(iii) Whiskies conforming to the standards prescribed in paragraphs (b)(1)(i)
and (ii) of this section, which have been stored in the type of oak containers
prescribed, for a period of 2 years or more shall be further designated as
"straight"; for example, "straight bourbon whisky", "straight corn whisky", and
whisky conforming to the standards prescribed in paragraph (b)(1)(i) of this
section, except that it was produced from a fermented mash of less than 51
percent of any one type of grain, and stored for a period of 2 years or more in
charred new oak containers shall be designated merely as "straight whisky".
No other whiskies may be designated "straight". "Straight whisky" includes
mixtures of straight whiskies of the same type produced in the same State.

(2) "Whisky distilled from bourbon (rye, wheat, malt, or rye malt) mash" is whisky
produced in the United States at not exceeding 160 proof from a fermented
mash of not less than 51 percent corn, rye, wheat, malted barley, or malted rye
grain, respectively, and stored in used oak containers; and also includes mixtures
of such whiskies of the same type. Whisky conforming to the standard of identity
for corn whisky must be designated corn whisky.

(3) "Light whisky" is whisky produced in the United States at more than 160
proof, on or after January 26, 1968, and stored in used or uncharred new oak
containers; and also includes mixtures of such whiskies. If "light whisky" is mixed
with less than 20 percent of straight whisky on a proof gallon basis, the mixture
shall be designated "blended light whisky" (light whisky--a blend).

(4) "Blended whisky" (whisky--a blend) is a mixture which contains straight
whisky or a blend of straight whiskies at not less than 20 percent on a proof
gallon basis, excluding alcohol derived from added harmless coloring, flavoring
or blending materials, and, separately, or in combination, whisky or neutral
spirits. A blended whisky containing not less than 51 percent on a proof gallon
basis of one of the types of straight whisky shall be further designated by that
specific type of straight whisky; for example, "blended rye whisky" (rye whisky--a
blend).

(5) (i) "A blend of straight whiskies" (blended straight whiskies) is a mixture of
straight whiskies which does not conform to the standard of identify for "straight
whisky." Products so designated may contain harmless coloring, flavoring, or
blending materials as set forth in 27 CFR 5.23(a).

(ii) "A blend of straight whiskies" (blended straight whiskies) consisting
entirely of one of the types of straight whisky, and not conforming to the
standard for straight whisky, shall be further designated by that specific type
of straight whisky; for example, "a blend of straight rye whiskies" (blended
straight rye whiskies). "A blend of straight whiskies" consisting entirely of one
of the types of straight whisky shall include straight whisky of the same type
which was produced in the same State or by the same proprietor within the
same State, provided that such whisky contains harmless coloring, flavoring,
or blending materials as stated in 27 CFR 5.23(a).

(iii) The harmless coloring, flavoring, or blending materials allowed under this
section shall not include neutral spirits or alcohol in their original state.
Neutral spirits or alcohol may only appear in a "blend of straight whiskies" or
in a "blend of straight whiskies consisting entirely of one of the types of
straight whisky" as a vehicle for recognized flavoring of blending material.

(6) "Spirit whisky" is a mixture of neutral spirits and not less than 5 percent on a
proof gallon basis of whisky, or straight whisky, or straight whisky and whisky, if
the straight whisky component is less than 20 percent on a proof gallon basis.

(7) "Scotch whisky" is whisky which is a distinctive product of Scotland,
manufactured in Scotland in compliance with the laws of the United Kingdom
regulating the manufacture of Scotch whisky for consumption in the United
Kingdom: Provided, That if such product is a mixture of whiskies, such mixture is
"blended Scotch whisky" (Scotch whisky--a blend).

(8) "Irish whisky" is whisky which is a distinctive product of Ireland, manufactured
either in the Republic of Ireland or in Northern Ireland, in compliance with their
laws regulating the manufacture of Irish whisky for home consumption: Provided,
That if such product is a mixture of whiskies, such mixture is "blended Irish
whisky" (Irish whisky--a blend).

(9) "Canadian whisky" is whisky which is a distinctive product of Canada,
manufactured in Canada in compliance with the laws of Canada regulating the
manufacture of Canadian whisky for consumption in Canada: Provided, That if
such product is a mixture of whiskies, such mixture is "blended Canadian whisky"
(Canadian whisky--a blend).

jeff
11-21-2003, 07:24
Thanks Jim, I guess I was mistaken. Hell, I guess I don't know my Tenneess whiskey very well http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/blush.gif Oh well, I can live with that http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/lol.gif

cornsqueezins
11-21-2003, 09:53
I would have to agree with Jeff and say that the charcoal mellowing process introduces subtle flavoring elements. At least that's what my taste buds have been led to believe from JD ads and tour guides, etc. The power of suggestion may play into my impressions of JD but I'm pretty sure I've detected quite a bit of smokiness in certain bottles of JD before. I've automatically attributed that to the sugar maple charcoal without giving it much thought, but as we all know, barrel char level may account for some of that.

One thing I'm absolutely sure about: Kentucky Bourbon folks don't want JD calling itself "bourbon". And the folks at JD are more than happy to oblige them. http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/grin.gif

MurphyDawg
11-21-2003, 10:09
activated charcoal




THATS the word I was lookinf for, thanks Jeff!

TomC

MurphyDawg
11-21-2003, 10:12
They sell blended bourbon (sans the "straight" desegnation) around here, I think it is called Bourbon Deluxe. . . Also all the "Diluted Bourbon", like Old Dan Tucker, that we sell in Ohio supermarkets is non-straight-whiskey bourbon. Bleah on all of them.


TomC

Barrel_Proof
11-22-2003, 16:49
The leeching process -- at least as far as George Dickel goes -- also introduces the chewable flavors of Fred, Wilma, Barney, Betty, Pebbles, and Bam Bam.

Mark and I detected, as have others, the presence of those unmistakable Bedrock flavors in Bob's bottle of No. 12 during our tasting this past weekend.

bobbyc
11-22-2003, 17:15
Cliff, Do they not also dissolve them in a acetone solution prior to introducing them to the leeching vat?


<font color="brown"> Good God Give Jim Croce Some </font>

Paradox
11-22-2003, 17:19
Mark and I detected, as have others, the presence of those unmistakable Bedrock flavors in Bob's bottle of No. 12 during our tasting this past weekend.




Yeah, I have to admit in the nose I do detect that flinstone vitamin aroma. Not as much at all in the flavor to me, but it was definately there for me in the nose. weird...

Barrel_Proof
11-22-2003, 17:30
Mais certainment! http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/shocked.gif

Bob
11-22-2003, 18:36
I had a pour of Dickle after the NY crew's get together last weekend. It was the first I'd had of the TN whisky in awhile, and I was suprised at the numerous comments posted here regarding the vitamin component. Then Mark and Cliff tried it last weekend and they agreed that they observed it as well. So, I poured myself a generous amount one evening, and sniffed and sniffed, tasted and tasted, but I still did not smell, or taste any vitamins. Lucky me, because I think Dickle is a very decent pour.

Bob

ratcheer
11-22-2003, 19:23
Finally, a voice of reason.

Tim

jeff
11-22-2003, 21:07
I suspect a conspiracy! http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/skep.gif

MurphyDawg
11-22-2003, 21:20
Honestly I WISH I could taste that, if you guys actually found the FLinstones variety, and not Jeffs moldy WalMart vitamins. I remember Flintstones vitamins tasting good (mmmmmm fruity!) as a kid!

TomC

bobbyc
11-23-2003, 19:35
To further obsfrucate this issue, how about a little of the Free Trade Area of the Americas Draft Agreement



[15.1. Parties shall recognize Bourbon Whiskey and Tennessee Whiskey, <font color="brown"> which is a straight Bourbon Whisky authorized to be produced only in the State of Tennessee, </font> as distinctive products of the United States. Accordingly, Parties shall not permit the sale of any product as Bourbon Whiskey or Tennessee Whiskey, unless it has been manufactured in the United States in accordance with the laws and regulations of the United States governing the manufacture of Bourbon Whiskey and Tennessee Whiskey.]





From Here (http://www.ftaa-alca.org/ftaadraft/eng/ngmae_2.asp)

Do we have more evidence for than against Tennessee whiskey being Bourbon at this point? I've lost count. http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/confused.gif

<font color="red"> Good God Give Pat Metheny Some </font>

TNbourbon
11-24-2003, 20:41
Rather than obfuscate, I think that pretty much clears that up, at least from a legal standpoint. It states pretty plainly that Tennessee whiskey "is a straight bourbon...". That neither the folks in TN or KY want to call it that is sort of beside the point.

bobbyc
11-25-2003, 15:39
At any rate , for me this is another thing that makes Bourbon so fascinating, besides of course a drink of it. I still have a hunt going for info that supports the other side of this.

The upshot being that a ruling in a lawsuit said Jack Daniels wasn't Bourbon and Reagor Motlow used that to his advantage, and began the full out marketing of Jack Daniels as a Tennessee Whiskey. When I get the documentation I'll post it.

<font color="green"> Good God Give Pat Martino Some </font>

Buckky
11-30-2003, 05:22
last night at the local liquor store they have shelved a Jack Daniel's version I had never seen before. It was called "Jack Daniels Gold Medal 1915"...it came in a bottle shaped like the single barrel and was in a box that matched the bottle label. sold for 36 bucks. is this just new to our area or is this a new product entirely? anyone know how its taste profile may differ?

Paradox
11-30-2003, 07:09
The Gold Medal bottle is just another series of bottles JD is doing. There is supposed to be 7 in total eventually, the 1915 being the 5th. I dont have pics of all 5 next to one another but you can see all 5 in a pic on my website... here's the pic here:

TNbourbon
11-30-2003, 10:33
JD is always releasing specialty bottles, it seems. Currently, for example, in a "Tennessee only" issue, are 750 ml bottles with a scene from tiny Lynchburg (pop. 361), where the distillery is. It is a statue of Jack Daniel, which stands in front of the property. Reportedly, there will be four other bottles, issued at 8-12-month intervals. The bottles are clear glass, with the images and letters embossed with gold piping. It brings about a 25% premium over the regular 750 ml Black #7, which is what it contains. Will post a pic when I finally get around to buying one. They aren't exactly flying of the shelf of the store where I work (because of the premium, I guess), so I figure I'll wait until the next one is issued (February, by latest report) or we look like running out.

TNbourbon
11-30-2003, 10:45
Just ran an internet search to see if I could find a pic of the current Tennessee-only JD bottle, and discovered the series, "Scenes from Lynchburg" is being distributed in Europe to. So, perhaps, the Tennessee-only designation is only for domestic consumption. Without a local bottle at hand to refer to, I can only report that it is very similar (the same scene, anyway). Here's the web page, which shows the remainder of the series, too, for anyone who's interested:
Scenes From Lynchburg (http://www.jdcollectorspage.com/scenes.html)