Far and away the biggest name in all of Irish whiskey, Jameson is (for a lot of people) their first and only entry into the wonderful world of Irish whiskey – and for good reason!
Originally established in the early 1770s by John Jameson, a man with a dream to smash into the growing whiskey business at the time, he was able to found one of the most influential distilleries in all of Dublin by refusing to cut corners or compromise on the quality of his whiskey.
Today’s Jameson whiskey enjoys the same legendary reputation for quality and consistency. This is one of the more perfect examples of a mass-market whiskey with nuances, subtleties, and a flavor that is nothing short of exceptional.
The popularity of Jameson has skyrocketed in the last decade
Whiskey was incredibly popular throughout the 1950s, 1960s, and a little bit into the 1970s, but then it kind of died off and excitement about this spirit tapered off until the early 2000s and 2010s – and now it’s back with a force!
Irish whiskey in particular is beloved by people branching away from Tennessee whiskey and bourbon, and while there are some competitors to Jameson as far as the best Irish whiskey in the land is concerned (Bushmills is right up there near the top), Jameson far out sells everyone else – and it isn’t even close.
Like most other Irish whiskey, Jameson’s triple distilled (compared to the more traditional twice distilled options in Scotland and America), and provides Jameson with a cleaner taste and a cleaner finish compared to some of the other fantastic whiskey options from around the world.
Relatively inexpensive, it still has some subtleties and nuances you’ll only find at much higher price points
The thing that helps to separate Jameson from the rest of the pack when it comes to Irish whiskey in general isn’t just it’s beautiful pale gold aesthetic but also its incredibly light knows filled with honey, pear, and orchard fruits as well as a bit of malt and citrus sitting just beneath the surface.
The taste is going to be up front and bright, incredibly clean with flavors of malt, vanilla, and citrus fruits with a bit of grass, cocoa, and an almost banana like flavor kicking in at the backend. There’s a little bit of caramel slipping around (thanks to the casks the Jameson ages in), but there’s no real “burn” or smokiness the way there is with American whiskeys or scotch.
The mouth feel is particularly lightweight, very smooth – almost velvety – and Jameson whiskey is considered by many to be amongst the easiest drinking of all the top Irish whiskey brands out there on the market today.
The finish comes in with just a bit of alcohol, a touch of malt, and a bit of oak and earth, but the finish isn’t going to linger very long the way that scotch or American whiskeys will.
At the end of the day, if you are a whiskey fan you’d have to be at least a little bit crazy not to see what all the noise is about regarding Jameson.
There are a couple of different options out there to pick and choose from coming out of the Jameson distillery today, but even the least expensive bottle of good old “Jameson standard” will set you up with the kind of top-notch experience you’d usually only have been able to get out of Irish whiskeys that cost two or three times as much for a bottle.
There’s a reason why Jameson has been able to last far longer than almost any of they are Irish whiskey competitors, as well as why they continue to be such a huge hit domestically and internationally each and every year.
Try out a little bit of Jameson all on your own and you’ll find out exactly what that reason is!