Originally intended to document my experience of DeLorean ownership, focus is often radical and strange, boring and obtuse.

Saturday, March 24, 2012

Jameson Irish Whiskey

Forget V8 juice. Want vegetables? Try Jameson Irish whiskey.With St. Patrick's Day just behind us, it's about time I got around to my first Irish whiskey review. Although there are countless Jameson reviews, mine is likely a bit different and I suspect most people will disagree with me.

Because of all the triple distilled scotch I've been drinking of late, I thought Jameson's might have a similar quality. (Irish whiskey is all triple distilled, helping distinguish it from other whiskies.)

There aren't a lot of choices when it comes to miniatures or small 200mL bottles at the LCBO, but that's exactly what I found. 200mL bottle, $10.

If I could sum up Jameson's blended whiskey in one word it would be "weird." This is a strange whiskey to me. On the nose I detect vegetables. After a butterscotch punch in the face, I get peas and corn.

The taste was similar. The butterscotch was very subdued, but I did get strange sweet vegetable flavours, some floral, very thin honey and raw corn-on-the-cob. It went down easy thanks to the triple distilling. Quite smooth. I could get used to this if I had to drink on a budget. Maybe.

The finish was dry and sweet, not very long. I tried and tried, but it was a bit of a mystery to me. I couldn't really detect any specific flavours. Does whiskey have a generic finish flavour? If so, Jameson's has it.

LCBO: $10
200 mL
40% (80 proof)

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Anonymous Ryan said...

Martini, I've also always thought Jameson was a bit weird. You're right that it's plenty smooth, but lacking in the flavor department.

I'm not sure how much experience you've had with other whisky in the past, but if you're comparing Jameson to Auchentoshan, I suspect the primary difference and weird flavor that you're picking up on is the "neutral grain spirits." I.e. Jameson is a "blend." They blend together cheaper, less flavorful neutral grain spirits distilled in a continuous/column still with the triple-distilled malt spirit. In a good blend, it's like 40% malt, but Jameson is probably more like 30% or 20% malt (though that is pure speculation on my part). The neutral spirits in blends have a funky flavor and aroma, which I have a difficult time describing but I could imagine placing some vegetal descriptors on it.

6:15:00 PM

Blogger Martini said...

I didn't really suspect that Jameson would be similar to Auchentoshan, but I thought I might find some small similarity due to the triple distillation. I don't think I have enough experience to distinguish the tastes people claim are added by that process.

The whiskies I've had are all over the map (The Peat Monster, Cragganmore, JW Blue Label, etc). I haven't had many cheap or blended whiskies so you're probably right - neutral grain spirit is new to me and clearly I can't seem to describe it. Thanks for the information!

10:30:00 AM

Blogger Martini said...

I've updated and made a clarification there.

10:34:00 AM

Blogger Unknown said...

Mixology is certainly an art, Martini! Sounds like the celebrations for St. Patty's Day where you live were awesome!

3:32:00 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

"On the nose I detect vegetables. After a butterscotch punch in the face, I get peas and corn." A vegens delight!! LMAO!!

The US has been broadcasting a lot of commercials for Jameson lately. Don't know why. I think I may pass on this. I like veggies, but not in my alcohol.

6:51:00 PM

Blogger Martini said...

In Canada, for years, it was illegal to advertise hard alcohol. The law was recently changed but so far we've only seen a few billboards. No Tv spots yet.

12:24:00 PM

Anonymous Dan said...

I have some NAS Jameson at home that I use primarily for cooking, as I can't bring myself to use good single malt in recipes that call for whisky. We tried a 12 year old Jameson at our Scotch Tasting Party back in December, which was quite smooth, and very tasty, but not at all vegetal.

10:31:00 AM

Blogger Martini said...

I would definitely like to try some older Jameson, something with an age statement. I am guessing it would have a stronger, richer taste than this.

1:26:00 PM


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