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jeff
03-16-2004, 15:14
On the way home from work I picked up a bottle of Jim Beam Black Label. The fancy decanter one to be exact. Not being a die-hard Beam fan I must say that I am pleased with this bourbon. Some have likened it to a low-proof Booker's, and I can see where they're comming from. I do have a question though: Some people have stated that they preferred this bourbon when it was a 7yo, instead of the current 8yo. Now, Beam white label has a 7yo variant. Is the 7yo white label similar to what used to be the 7yo black label? It is about $3 cheaper for the white here in Lexington, and I'll give it a try if there are any advocates out there.

Paradox
03-16-2004, 15:16
What's the proof on the new 7 year white label Jeff? The old 7 year black label was 90 proof compared to the new black 86 proof.

TNbourbon
03-16-2004, 19:57
The current Beam 7yo (white label) is 80 proof, as is its 4yo white-label cousin. I'm among those who favor the old 7yo 90-proof Black Label (still available in a surprising number of places but, unfortunately, not near me). But, the current 8yo is, I think, the cream of the Jim Beam labels, and hard to beat, period, at its price point.

cowdery
03-16-2004, 20:49
The 7-year-old Jim Beam white label is something that hasn't shown its face here in Chicago. The black label has been one of the most fiddled-with brands in history. They've changed the label, the bottle, the proof and the age multiple times. I haven't had it recently, but I liked it the last time it was 8-years-old. The price seems to have gone up a little recently, but it's still a good value.

jeff
03-17-2004, 05:30
Well at 80 proof it's not the bargain it seemed. http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/frown.gif

Tim, have you tried the 7yo white label? If so what did you think? I'll admit part of me wants to buy it because of the UK blue and white basketball championship labeling http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/blush.gif

Paradox
03-17-2004, 12:19
Well at 80 proof it's not the bargain it seemed. http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/frown.gif





My thoughts exactly, 80 proof stuff just doesn't do it for me at all anymore. For $3 stick with what ya' know is good...

TNbourbon
03-17-2004, 20:56
Keeping in mind that my tongue is untutored compared to yours (I've only been appreciating bourbon for a year or so, though I've tried to cut a wide swath):
To me, either of the JB white labels is 'basic bourbon': drinkable, but not memorable. It sells and sells, so obviously it's not bad. The 7yo is more flavorful and, to me, a bit smoother than the 4yo -- but the difference between the 8yo Black and the 7yo White is greater than the difference between the 7yo and 4yo whites. An analogy might be the difference between Booker's and Basil Hayden's from the "Small Batch" group. On a different level, Black is Booker's, either White is Basil Hayden's. That may not be exactly right regarding the precise taste profiles, but it gives an idea about the impressions.
Hope this helps rather than confuses.

jeff
03-18-2004, 03:25
Thanks for the insight Tim. I think I'll stick with the Black label for now and maybe try the 7yo white if I can find it at a bar somewhere. BTW, anyone in or around central KY know where I might find an older 7yo Black label?

jeff
03-18-2004, 03:32
Yeah, like you Mark I tend to prefer my bourbons at a relatively high proof. To me (my opinion only) most 80 proof bourbons lack the character and flavor of their higher-proof cousins. There is also a watery mouthfeel that I perceive in most of them that leaves me unsatisfied. 90 proof is generally the starting point of my preference, but I can dig an 86 proof if it's good (i.e. Beam Black and VOB). There seems to be more of a leap in demension and character between 80 and 86 than between say 90 and 100. JMHO http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/toast.gif