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I thought I had reviewed this one ages ago, so let's do it now, followed by a Dickel cask strength single barrel.
This is the standard Dickel No. 12, which seems to be the Tennessee whiskey (or, as they call it on the label, whisky) for those who don't like Jack Daniel's. I have no idea what "No. 12" means, any more than I know what JD's "No. 7" means. Must be a Tennessee thang.
The colour is a burnt caramel. On the nose...well, lots of burnt caramel too! Baked apple, cinnamon, star anise, cloves and wood smoke. Quite oaky. Roasted nuts. Soft vanilla. Herbal. Mintier - and maltier - with water. The smoother cousin to that other Tennessean.
On the palate there is burnt sugar, creme brûlée, wet tobacco leaves, ginger and more cloves. Again, very oaky, and with a heavy char. Medium mouthfeel. Dates. A bit of a sour note, which is interesting. Water brings out a bit more spice. Extremely rich.
The finish is full of cherrywood smoke, tobacco, nutmeg and sage. As I hinted at earlier, many of my whisky friends who don't like JD (but who like single malts and softer bourbons) like this one. To be, it is very much like JD dialled back a bit, with a subtle sourness thrown in. It's very good and I often enjoy drinking it. But it could still use JD's oomph.