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Jim Beam Black Label

Average score from 8 reviews and 43 ratings 81

Jim Beam Black Label

Product details

  • Brand: Jim Beam
  • Bottler: Unknown
  • ABV: 43.0%

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Jim Beam Black Label

Jim Beam black? More like Jim Beam bleck! Ok, ok...all silliness aside, I got this mainly to mix into old fashions and wasn't expecting much. This used to come with an age statement, but now it just reads "extra aged," whatever that means. An extra 2 months? 2 years? Who knows. Lets try it neat and see how we feel.

Nose: Vanilla, caramel, cinnamon. A bit weak but its only 43% so as expected. Vanilla is the dominant player here.

Palate: vanilla, charred oak chips. Very smooth. A bit smokey from the charred oak. Its like you used some oak chips for a bbq then after the bbq you dumped vanilla extract on them.

Finish: Vanilla, a bit of spice, and more charred oak.

Overall: This is much better than I anticipated! I might actually just keep this around to sip on. Its a bit thin and one dimensional, but its decent. It doesnt make me make an awkward face when I drink it like the 40% white label does. I mean its still bottom or mid shelf, but it doesnt suck so therefore it has exceeded my expectations.

I have had some Jim Beam Black Label which was lacking, as yours was, but most batches/bottles I've encountered have been very good. More than once I have given tastings to several new and intermediate whisky-drinkers including Ardbeg Uigeadail, Aberlour A'bunadh, Redbreast 12, Redbreast 12 CS, Booker's, Pappy Van Winkle 15 yo, George T. Stagg, William Larue Weller, Thomas Handy Rye, etc. and the overall favourite whisk(e)y was Glenmorangie Sonnalta PX, with Jim Beam Black Label being the second favourite, and Bernheim Original Wheat whiskey the third.

So, when I read your review I think, "some more inconsistency with Jim Beam Black Label." Inconsistency is not good, of course. I do understand that your bottle is 100% of your experience of it.

...about the 57% ABV. Sure, it's standardized and it's just not possible for a large batch whiskey to come out at exactly 57% ABV repeatedly. That said, because this is fairly young whiskey I doubt that the actual proof of each undiluted batch is much higher than 57% ABV. This is just a standardization process used to establish the name and identity of this particular product. For all intents and purposes Old Grand-Dad 114 is approximately barrel strength.


A bought a little sample of this with a sample of Larceny by Old Fitzgerald and a fifth of Rittenhouse Rye 100 proof BiB. Reviews will be forth coming... Anyways review incoming.

Nose: Caramel galore with small bits of vanilla, spice, and amounts of alcohol float across my nose. Not much going on here..

Body: Upon swirling, thin, relatively fast moving legs trickled down the side of the glass. Kind of watery mouthfeel as it is swirled around the mouth.

Taste: Vanilla, toffee, herbal hints of mint, and what is believed to be rye/pepper. This is a bourbon on the spicier side which I like but it isn't very complex.

Finish: Short with a slight tongue tingle, spicy with rye and pepper.

Overall: From memory this is much better than the White Label bottling. The nose was boring and one dimensional. It didn't seem to benefit from the tiny bit of water that I added. The finish did seem to last longer though. I wouldn't mind using this in some classic whiskey cocktails.


DISCLAIMER: This review is for the triple aged 6 year old Jim Beam Black for export and not the 8 year old domestic version. Having had both, there's a noticeable difference.

This review is based on the third dram out of a week old bottle.

Nose: this is a layered and interesting nose. Black licorice, cherries, vanilla, bubblegum. Quite a sweet, inviting nose. Some underlying spices come after a few minutes.

Palate: the bourbon's arrival is gentle, to say the least. Thin in the mouth. The palate is more of the nose. Wood, vanilla, licorice and cherries. There's more spices and a dryness that keeps the bourbon from being cloying. I've read reviews where this bourbon is said to be rough or young, but I really don't get that.

Finish: very short with old, spicy cherries.

An honest whisky. The nose delivers more than both the palate and finish. This is the main difference with the domestic 8 year old Black. It's less balanced, less complex and the finish suffers. With that said, it's still a very honest bourbon for its price and availability. Head and shoulders above Jim Beam White.

Recommended, especially if can get the 8 year old domestic version.


I had somewhat low expectations considering my experiences with Jim Beam white label, so I purchased a 50ml sample bottle to test this out. Drank neat in a whiskey glass.

After tasting I have to say that I was completely surprised by how good this really was. It really surpassed anything I had expected. Woody, sweet caramel in the nose, and smooth and spicy going down. I picked up notes of creamy vanilla and charred oak, with an ever sweeter but peppery finish.

I am even more suprised by the great price - I have seen a 750ml bottle going for about $18 USD, which is almost half of the price I've seen for similar Bourbons. This is something I will go to again, and was a very pleasant surprise.

Strong finish in the Kentucky tradition. This one seems to be be blue collar Bourbon. This is what Bourbon should be.


It's not the sexiest, most expensive, unique, or "select". It is one of the most heavily marketed, well known, recognized, and readily available......that being said, one would not expect JB Black to be so solidly good. I believe that it is.

The nose: Warm vanilla creme and sweet corn, but not overly glucose-ish (creative liberty).

Taste: First to cross your tongue is vanilla, followed by sweet woody oak with a quick to follow ginger-snap bourbon/ pepper kick (very pleasant).

Finish: A light pepper and sweet ginger alcohol burn that fades gracefully.

In summation, the more I drink JB Black the more I love it-- It is very much like my comfort food of bourbon. The icing on the cake is the price point. I hope you find the same pleasure in it.

'Nuf said.

@victor your initial comment had me a bit puzzled as it was slightly out of context,....personally I will find myself reaching for a single malt scotch or a bourbon, but haven't really settled in on a blend. Chivas and JW Black are two that seem to always pop up at functions and I'll drink them when others aren't available but hey seem to all be slightly astringent. It is however a time tested and very popular blend. Cheers, and thanks for the dialogue. This site is excellent and a great resource for me to build my knowledge base.

@MyLoSyRo, very sorry about that...I certainly didn't intend consciously to mess up your comment trail.

BTW my wife, aka Dramlette attended a Beam whiskey dinner with Fred Noe about a year ago. When asked which of Beam's products he would least like to be without, Fred answered "Jim Beam Black Label."


Ah bourbon! It`s what eventually pushed me toward scotch whiskys. Recently, I purchased and tasted more then my fair share of bourbon. Sure the price her in Quebec of bourbon whiskey is far lower then even the lowest priced scotch. But more then the price motivated me: I love the stuff.

Stepping away from my usual supects from Lynchburg, I went to Kentucky to find another good ol' Sour Mash: the Jim Beam Black Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey.

Aged 8 years (they called it "Double Aged") in brand new heavily scorched american oak barrel in their hwarehouse, this whisky is a nice dark somehow redish-brown gold, a bit like some Courvoisier cognac, another Fortune Brands owned spirit.

The nose is classic: bourbon vanilla with some sweet coal and honey.

The thin almost watery body brings forth a hard butter candy arrival followed by pepper that turns into orange peel. It then develops further back into butter to then finish thing up in wood and charcoal.

The after taste is sacharine and orange peel, all soft and smooth but lingers on for quiate a bit.

Amazing bang for the bucks. The pepper notes are a nice surprise that shake things up and make it quite enjoyable.

Much less sweet then Gentleman Jack and less smoky then Johnnie Walker Black Label, but it could give it a run for it's money.

Well Done!

I enjoyed the descriptions in this review...So freaking...uh..descriptive! JB Black is the best bang for the buck when it it is on sale and it often is. As I read the words,"butter-candy,orange-peel, pepper", a scene from Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory was conjured. "It's hot and creamy. I can actually feel it running down my throat!" -- Violet, after eating a gumball that tastes like a three-course meal.


Ahh, Jim Beam Black Label. My first bottle of Bourbon purchased with a "mature" palate.

As I started this whisk(e)y journey with Scotch, I became curious of what was in my "backyard". Kentucky is famous for Bourbon and is a neighboring state of Virginia to our west.

I knew I wanted a bold, thick representation of a Bourbon to add to my collection and JBBL (Aged 8 Years) was calling, no, yelling BUY ME! No regrets as this bottle of Beam Black is no bum and not a bomb, it's a keeper for the cabinet.

  • Tasted neat, 12 oz. snifter, hand warmed and sipped for about 1/2 hour.

Nose: Sweet, French vanilla custard, oaky hints of licorice whips, ripe fruits, spicy kumquats?

Palate: Oaky with a distinctive Bourbon kick of oily sugar sweet corn, licorice from the nose session evident.

Finish: More of the oak mingled nicely with the sweet fruit, a spicy long finish that lingers and lifts the taste buds.

Balance: Smooth and enjoyable from beginning to end. Can't go wrong with this as a "daily dram" candidate. A nice thing about Bourbon is the color is natural from the barrel aging...no artificial coloring added. What a beautiful thing to look at as I take my time with this dram!

A wonderful example of what a Bourbon would taste like if you didn't know what Bourbon tasted like. Smooth, sweet, complex and a classic from Bourbon country...Kentucky.


Nose, Taste, Finish and Balance are graded out of 2.5 each:

Nose: Luxurious pistachio ice-cream and crunchy nougat, with some fresh sweet-corn thrown in for good measure. A beautiful balance of corn and rye. The Jim Beam Black aroma is such a distinct one, and one that I never grow tired of. 2.5

Taste: Medium bodied and oily. The sweet-corn is the first to bed down on the palate, before a strong oily liquorice takes over, flanked by a mild spice from the rye. 2.0

Finish: Oily black liquorice in between two slices of ginger-cake. Quite short with a touch of jalapeno spice on the exit. 2.0

Balance: A truly complex and distinct bourbon, with its pistachio nut and liquorice character, and one that is so endlessly drinkable. Dressed in its guise of a bar-shelf whiskey, this is very much a premium bourbon for your everyday needs. 2.0

@OJK you nailed it! It's the hint of "ginger-cake". * epiphany * As noted in my profile, JB Black is a staple for me and I always recognized the (ginger) sour-twang on my palate after swallowing but could never put my finger on what it was. It is a very subtle almost sour moment that disappears quickly and that I find enjoyable ....it is sandwiched between the vanilla nose-and-tail of this very enjoyable bourbon. Thank you for your insightful assessment.

I was really surprised how good this bourbon was when I first tasted it. I wasn't expecting much when I first opened it , but that first sip made my take notice that this was more than just an average bourbon. Now I like it more than Gentleman Jack or Makers Mark, and it cost less than both of those.

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