I have to admit that when I received this bottle of Jim Beam Double Oak Bourbon, I guessed it would probably cost well over $100.00 (if not hundreds of dollars) per bottle because it came ensconced in a beautiful oak case that was secured by two rather wide and weathered metal bands and weighed nearly 10 pounds. Not only was the outside of this case just drop dead gorgeous, with its carved logo, inside the lid there was the story of this bourbon printed on dark blue paper in gold letters and covered over by plastic and secured with four brass bolts. Turns out, this spirit can actually be purchased for between $26.95 and $30.70 per 750ml bottle, but it will come in a cardboard box that is quite nice but certainly not as eye catching as this oak case.
Most times fancy packaging relates to fancy pricing. I have seen cognacs that go for thousands of dollars that come in rare and exotic glass bottles and unbelievable boxes that just reek of money. Then there’s that million dollar bottle of Russian vodka that comes in a solid gold container! I guess this oak case was meant to get my attention, and it most certainly did. If you get lucky, you just might find this bourbon in this case around Christmas time.
As the name implies, this Double Oak bourbon has been aged in charred American white oak barrels twice. The first ageing is for four years and then after the transfer for a further short maturation to taste. That much effort should produce some mighty deep spirits with a ton of flavor, so let’s get to it and see if I’m right. By the way, it comes in a new bottle which has “unique contours, glass embossing and engraving, along with a textured label and foiling.” The liquid inside is a deep amber color.
The nose is rich, oaky and smoky with vanilla and caramel notes. On the palate, the oak and vanilla intensify and become spicy and yet sweet with further notes of vanilla and, now, burnt caramel. The finish is long and sweet and spicy. This is an intense bourbon that highlights all the good features of a Jim Beam Bourbon. That double ageing has literally doubled the flavors. This bourbon might be a bit too intense for some to swallow neat, but on the rocks. it settles down and behaves beautifully and transforms into a righteous sipper. The fullness of the flavors and spice notes will definitely not get lost in a mixed drink, thus making this a strong candidate for your favorite cocktails.
It’s 86 proof or 43% ABV.
By George Brozowski