George Dickel No. 12
George Dickel No.12 is a Tennessee Whiskey that is distilled and aged in Cascade Hollow near Tullahoma and is owned by parent company Diageo PLC. The whiskey dates back to the late 1800s and claims to have begun the process of chill-filtering. Unlike most of the whiskies in the U.S., George Dickel labels their spirit as “Whisky” the traditional spelling in Scotland as opposed to “Whiskey”. The reason for this is because distillers claim that the quality and smoothness of the spirit can only be matched by the Scots. Although there is no age statement on the bottle, George Dickel No. 12 is thought to be aged around the 10 year mark before being bottled at 90 Proof (45% ABV). Even though it is slightly above average ABV, it is still has a nice sweetness and unexpected smoothness that can be attributed to the charcoal mellowing process. I recommend drinking this with one teaspoon or so of distilled water to cut down on the alcohol sting.
The color has a slightly reddish brown hue to it, almost looks like grade A maple syrup.
I’m not going to lie to you people, the nose on this one is a little bit harsh. It is by no means overwhelming on the nose; but it does have a rye/cinnamon spice that does take a couple of tries to get past it. Once you do though, there is certain pleasantness about it. It has a nice complex aroma, creamy vanilla sugar, warm brioche and hints of smoky charred oak.
Again the ABV is a little bit higher in this one, so your first sip is going to be a wave of spice over your tongue. This is where I suggest maybe a touch of water to help bring the notes out. The spice is still there, but now the spice is made up of cinnamon and ginger, at the same time there is a hint of frosting sugar; and once you put them together it reminds me of Christmas gingerbread. There is also some light caramel and banana that comes through as well.
The mouth feel on this isn’t anything special in my opinion. Definitely an average medium body on this, however the viscosity is nice; coats the glass well with long legs.
I love the finish on this whiskey; despite the higher ABV and prominent pepper and spice notes, this is an incredibly smooth spirit. It honestly took me surprise, I was expecting a least to feel some heat in the back of the throat, but it wasn’t there. There is just a nice inviting warmth of vanilla, dry oak and bread pudding with hints of smoke.
First of all let me state that I have never been a fan of Tennessee whiskey. Maybe that’s because the only one I have ever really known was Jack Daniels, and it’s sweet and sour profile was never to my liking. With that being said, after reviewing this I cannot wait to give some others a try! I found this to have some really nice complexity about it and at $18 a bottle it is a steal. Now I’m not saying it is one of the best whiskies in the world, because I’m not; but for a cheap price you will be hard pressed to find something better. I think that this easily out competes it’s more popular brother Jack Daniels 10 fold and is light years ahead of George Dickel No. 8. If you happen to be heading to a cookout or barbeque this summer and want to bring a nice surprise at a low cost; this is it. Even if people just end up mixing it with Coke, they will thank you at the end of the night.