Every once in awhile us vile black metal badasses need to suit up. Maybe it’s to please a family member at a wedding, maybe it’s to respect the dead at a funeral, maybe it’s because the soul was sold to embrace the nihilistic corporate world once sworn against (ugh). Nevertheless, life in the first world necessitates this occasional cleaner cut image and perhaps this projection may even impress some strangers in open territory. But deep down underneath this fabrication lurks that sadistic primal savage that lusts for chaos, destruction, and pure fucking mayhem.
This is the nature of Gentleman Jack, the bourbon to justly satisfy the duality of man. Benefiting from an added layer of charcoal mellowing, the Gentleman Jack is a much improved form of its popular Jack Daniel’s No. 7 predecessor in all aspects. Unfortunately, this improved quality is reflected in its price, which is nearly double that of the No. 7 classic. Gentleman Jack is therefore not the ideal whiskey or even the ideal Jack Daniel’s for wild college parties, loud nightclubs, those light on cash or those who supplement their whiskey with soda or water. Instead, seek the Gentleman on the quieter, more intimate occasions of small gatherings, classier dinner/bar dates, a candlelit night beside an album high in replay value or a cherished blue movie under candlelight as former Death drummer Richard Christy is known to partake on Friday nights.
I prefer to serve Gentleman Jack straight and, going against popular opinion, have always insisted on keeping it chilled before use. While it is indeed smooth and tasty for a whiskey it retains the vintage raw Jack Daniel’s edge. It’s a bit harsh when first hitting the throat but will venture down smoothly from there. The finish is a delicious caramel treat, but not to the candy-like extreme of it’s similarly priced Irish cousin Jameson Caskmates. This gives Gentleman the perfect balance of grit and grace that is unrivaled by any whiskey in its price range.
Alas, a due warning to those who dare to invoke The Gentleman: beware of his deception. The improved drinkability over Old Number 7 will lead to it going down faster and easier. This can quickly get you in trouble as it is Jack Daniel we’re dealing with and Jack is indeed a heavy hitter. Even other whiskeys consumed at a similar pace won’t cause the destruction of Gentleman Jack, so proceed with absolute caution. Much like a deceiving corporate handshake or a warm succubus smile, The Gentleman will make you feel at ease before it picks the flesh from your bones. Those already on bad terms with Mr. Daniel’s would be wise to avoid.
Many times while enjoying Gentleman Jack, I thought upon the legends and mystery surround Jack Daniel himself. Did the gangrene that killed him really come from kicking his safe, frustrated at forgetting the combination? If so, was he wasted off his own shit? Most importantly, though, I think of how he tamed the animal within well enough to find a vastness of success in his business dealings. But if the tall tales are true, it appears that the animal got the best of him in the end.