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Jack Daniel's CookbookStories and Kitchen Secrets from Miss Mary Bobo's Boarding House
By LYNNE TOLLEY MINDY MERRELL
Thomas NelsonCopyright © 2012 Jack Daniel's Properties, Inc.
All right reserved.
Chapter OneWe're Tennessee Whiskey
Contrary to what some folks believe, Jack Daniel's Old No. 7 is a Tennessee whiskey, not a bourbon. Jack Daniel's Tennessee Whiskey is made only in the hills of Middle Tennessee using a blend of the finest corn, rye, and barley malt available, combined with our iron-free water from the limestone cave spring. We do share a connection with bourbon, but we take the crucial extra step called charcoal mellowing. Before barrel aging, our whiskey travels through ten feet of hard sugar maple charcoal to give Jack Daniel's its characteristic smoothness. All our whiskey is aged on the Moore County hillsides surrounding Lynchburg in newly charred white oak barrels.
Empty Oak Barrels Have Many Uses
Because federal regulations allow us to age whiskey in a barrel only once, you're probably wondering what happens to all those used oak barrels. Even empty, our barrels are full of flavor, so many of them are sent to Scotland where our Scotch whisky distillery friends put them to use. Some of our barrels head down to Avery Island in south Louisiana where the Tabasco folks age their world famous pepper sauce. You or someone you know may have one sitting on your patio full of petunias. A half barrel makes a handy planter and grows happy plants. And then a few we just bust up to make our popular Jack Daniel's Tennessee Whiskey Wood Smoking Chips and flavor pellets for outdoor grilling and barbecue.
Jack Daniel's Old No. 7 Black Label Tennessee Whiskey
Our world-famous whiskey has been awarded seven international gold medals, including one for "world's best whiskey" presented to Uncle Jack at the 1904 World's Fair in St. Louis, Missouri. His famous square bottle and handsome black and white label is recognized around the world because of what's inside—charcoal mellowed Tennessee Whiskey, a well-balanced mix of caramel, vanilla, wood notes, and a slightly fruity and distinctively dry finish. It is 80 proof.
Jack Daniel's Single Barrel Tennessee Whiskey
Each barrel of Jack Daniel's has its own personality, a distinct nose, color, and taste. Master Distiller Jeff Arnett and Master Taster Jeff Norman, along with a team of experts, select exceptional barrels to be bottled as Single Barrel Whiskey with no blending of whiskey from any other barrel. These special barrels age on the upper floors of the barrelhouses where the hot, humid Tennessee summers and cold winters create more movement of the whiskey in and out of the wood. The result is a rich, amber, mature, 94 proof whiskey with heightened flavors of toasted oak, vanilla, and caramel. I love to present a bottle of Single Barrel as a present or a hostess gift. Maybe that's why I get so many party invitations!
Buy Your Own Barrel
Whiskey connoisseurs can place an order for an entire single barrel of Jack Daniel's Single Barrel Tennessee Whiskey. Each barrel yields approximately 240 to 250 750ml bottles. The happy purchaser receives the bottled whiskey and the barrel in which it was aged, a customized metal neckband for each bottle, a brass naming plaque, and a framed certificate of ownership. Plus, you get your name on a brass plaque on the wall at the distillery.
Gentleman Jack Rare Tennessee Whiskey
My Uncle Jack experimented with double charcoal mellowing but never did much with it. In 1988, we decided to dig up his notes and give it a try. The result is Gentleman Jack Rare Tennessee Whiskey. Gentleman Jack is made using a slightly different recipe and is the only whiskey in the world that is charcoal mellowed twice, once before aging and once after. This 80 proof whiskey has a silky finish laced with caramel, fruit, vanilla, and smoke. I like to call it our Tennessee cognac and often serve it in snifters after supper. Don't miss my favorite Classic Jack Mint Julep (page 14).
Jack Daniel's Tennessee Honey
Our newest product in a generation, Jack Daniel's Tennessee Honey, was introduced in 2010. Tennessee Honey is a lovely blend of honey liqueur and Jack Daniel's Tennessee Whiskey, and it's perfect for serving chilled in little shot glasses or over ice for sipping. At 70 proof, Tennessee Honey is a little lighter than Old No. 7. We often mix it with sparkling wine, ginger ale, iced tea, or lemonade. Or, try it in a Hot Buttered Whiskey Glaze (page 217). It's also a wonderful cooking ingredient, so pay close attention to the dessert chapter.
Setting Up the Bar Jack Manhattans
Classic Jack Manhattan Perfect Gentleman Jack Manhattan Licorice Manhattan Orange Manhattan Tennessee Chocolate Almond Manhattans Tennessee Chocolate Mint Manhattans The Gentleman's Sour Apple Manhattan Jack Daniel's Old Fashioned Tennessee Cranberry Smash Manhattan
Tennessee Honey Sparklers
Tennessee Honey Royale Tennessee Honey Bellini Tennessee Cider
Official Taste Testers Jack's Juleps
Classic Jack Mint Julep Pineapple Jack Julep Tennessee Honey Julep
Jack Daniel's Infused Whiskey
Ginger Jack Orange Jack Spiced Jack
Jack and Sodas
Jack and Cola Jack and Cola Float or Jack Black Cow Jack and Citrus Soda Jack Attack
Meet Jeff Arnett
Jack Party Punches
Cool Jack Apple Mint Tea Tolley Town Celebration Punch Honey Milk Punch Jack Daniel's Citrus Cider Shoo Fly Punch
Classic Tennessee Whiskey Sour Pineapple Jack Sour Jack Jajito Sour
Tall Cool Jack Cocktails
Hula Jack ApriJack Nectar Lynchburg Lemonade Coconut Orange Jack Madras Jacket Jack's Pomegranate Lemonade Iced Tennessee Honey Tea
Meet Jeff Norman Warm Jack Cocktails
Hot Tennessee Toddy Hot Tomato Jack Jack Daniel's Warm Pear Nectar Sipper Hound Dog Hot Bouillon Mulled in Moore County Hot Buttered Tennessee Honey Tennessee Honey Hot Tea
Creamy Jack Cocktails
Bold Custard Almond Jack Frost Tennessee Honey Coffee Melt Honey and Cream
Setting Up the Bar
I do believe in a well-stocked bar. In fact, since I live in two places—Lynchburg during the week and Nashville on the weekends—I was able to convert the laundry nook in my city town home into a wet bar. My husband, Tom, teases me about it and loves to tell people, "We have a lot of Jack Daniel's and a lot of dirty laundry!"
A well-stocked bar and a few simple tools are all you need for making great cocktails quickly and easily. I keep my bar equipment together to avoid that exasperating last minute, pre-party panic.
Shakers—Cocktail shakers are fun and showy, but for me the Boston Shaker used by professional bartenders for shaking and stirring drinks works just fine. It's a stainless steel mixing/stirring cup on the bottom with a smaller glass that fits snugly in the steel half. Mix the drink with ice in the metal cup for stirring and shaking. Insert the glass top to cover tightly and shake. Let the cocktail mixture cool in the cold metal cup on ice for a moment. Then use a wire strainer to pour your drink into the glass.
Wire strainer—Place this over the mixing glass to strain a cocktail from the ice into a glass.
Stirring spoon—A long handled spoon comes in handy for stirring a drink in the tall mixing glass.
Reliable combination bottle and can opener—When I was little, Daddy called this a church key. I don't know what kind of church he was talking about, but I believe he attended regularly. You can find one that includes a good cork screw.
Small cutting board and sharp paring knife—Small equipment is plenty adequate for cutting fruit garnishes. Don't fool with anything that's hard to store and takes up too much counter space.
Measuring cup and shot glass—I use a little six-ounce glass that's really handy for measuring the whiskey and the mixers.
Towels and cleaning supplies—No matter how tidy you are, bartending is sticky business. Keep things looking sharp with designated bar towels, paper towels, and a discreet bottle of all-purpose cleaner or bleach spray.
I love my mother's old crystal and silver punchbowls with matching little cups, but they're not for every punch occasion. An overly "frou-frou" style can put a damper on some real fun, especially when gentlemen are present. Remember "punch" is simply a cocktail made in a larger batch. I like to be inventive and let the occasion choose the bowl. Big crocks and pottery bowls fit in with an outdoor party. Mismatched icy pitchers can look handsome in a group. Even big glass vases work well with a long-handled ladle. Just be sure that whatever you choose for serving is food safe and easy to wash.
Take it from me, the glass is just as important as the drink it holds. That doesn't necessarily mean expensive, but you need the correct glass for the drink and the occasion. Even when breaking the rules of glassware, the best bartenders stay true to the guiding principles and do it with confidence. I prefer clear glass to let the beautiful color of the cocktail shine through. The following glasses will do you nicely.
Rocks glasses—A good rocks glass (also called the old-fashioned) is small and sturdy in the hand, perfect for sipping whiskey neat or over ice with a splash of water.
Highball—This all-purpose glass can hold a good icy mixed drink like Jack and cola. Keep a few of the taller Collins glasses, perfect for Lynchburg Lemonade, if you have the space. Of course, we like to use chilled mason jars for fruity summer drinks with lots of ice.
Cocktail glasses—If you don't have the shelf space or patience for the v-shaped Manhattan-style up glass, serve strained chilled drinks in small wine glasses.
Wine glasses—Stemmed glassware shouldn't be confined to wines. Often, I'll serve an icy fruit punch in a stemmed glass for an especially elegant presentation.
Nothing ruins a drink's first impression faster than a badly cut garnish or a garnish that's past its prime.
For easy squeezing when you want just the juice in the drink, cut limes and lemons across in half through the fat middle and then cut each half into four chunks. Otherwise, cut festive wheels or half wheels, or cut lengthwise into long thin wedges. Oranges are typically cut into thin half or quarter wheels.
Twist—This is simply a thin slice of citrus rind, usually lemon or orange. You can buy a special tool or use a sharp paring knife. When zesting any citrus fruit, be sure to cut only deep enough to remove the colored peel without much of the bitter white pulp underneath. Twist the peel to release the oils and run it around the rim for flavor before dropping it in the drink.
Maraschino cherries—I prefer the stemless cherries so as not to inconvenience my guests with an annoying "now what do I do with this?" moment.
Other interesting garnishes you can add to enhance or change the character of a drink (other than olives and onions) include thinly sliced green apple, cucumber, fresh peach slices, pineapple chunks, star fruit, raspberries, blueberries, strawberries, melon balls, crystallized ginger, fresh herbs, whole almonds, and even jelly beans and edible flowers.
Finishing Touches to a Well-served Cocktail
Little things matter like festive beverage napkins and coasters. Paper napkins are fine as long as they are beverage sized, not dinner. I love my old-fashioned lacey cocktail napkins even though they need a little pressing. I want my guests to feel special because they are special. Spread around plenty of drink coasters so guests can set down their drinks without worry. As for drink stirrers, I find they're a nuisance and unnecessary, especially if you've properly mixed the drinks.
Long ago my mother instilled in me the importance of a well-set table, whether casual or more formal. "Never just throw the silverware at the plates," she'd advise. I like to accent a room with lots of candles and lower the lighting so everyone looks their best. On a cocktail buffet, arrange foods neatly and combine serving dishes of different heights and shapes.
Being the great-grandniece of Jasper Newton Daniel, my definition of a Manhattan must of necessity include all Jack Daniel's concoctions that are chilled and served straight up (no ice) in a cocktail glass. So many flavors combine beautifully with our Tennessee Whiskey, so the task of the maker of these elegant offerings is to never mask that unique charcoal mellowed taste.
Classic Jack Manhattan
2 ounces Jack Daniel's Tennessee Whiskey 1/2 ounce sweet vermouth Dash of bitters Maraschino cherry
Combine the Jack Daniel's, vermouth, and bitters in a mixing glass with ice. Stir to chill. Strain into a chilled cocktail glass or serve on the rocks. Garnish with a cherry.
Perfect Gentleman Jack Manhattan
2 ounces Gentleman Jack Rare Tennessee Whiskey 1/4 ounce dry vermouth 1/4 ounce sweet vermouth Dash of bitters Lemon twist
Combine the Gentleman Jack, vermouth, and bitters in a mixing glass with ice. Stir to chill. Strain into a chilled cocktail glass or serve on the rocks. Garnish with a lemon twist.
2 ounces Jack Daniel's Tennessee Whiskey 1/2 ounce anisette Dash of bitters Black jelly bean and orange twist
Combine the Jack Daniel's, anisette, and bitters in a mixing glass with ice. Stir to chill. Strain into a chilled cocktail glass or serve on the rocks. Garnish with a black jelly bean and an orange twist.
1 1/2 ounces Jack Daniel's Tennessee Whiskey 1 ounce orange curacao 1 ounce fresh orange juice Dash of bitters Orange slice
Combine the Jack Daniel's, curacao, orange juice, and bitters in a mixing glass with ice. Stir to chill and strain into a chilled cocktail glass. Garnish with an orange slice.
Tennessee Chocolate Almond Manhattan
1 1/2 ounces Jack Daniel's Tennessee Whiskey 1 ounce white crème de cacao 1/2 ounce amaretto Whole almond (unsalted)
Combine the Jack Daniel's, crème de cacao, and amaretto in a mixing glass with ice. Stir to chill. Strain into a chilled cocktail glass or serve on the rocks. Garnish with one whole almond.
Tennessee Chocolate Mint Manhattan
1 1/2 ounces Jack Daniel's Tennessee Whiskey 1 ounce white crème de cacao 1/2 ounce white crème de menthe Fresh mint leaf
Combine the Jack Daniel's, crème de cacao, and crème de menthe in a mixing glass with ice. Stir to chill. Strain into a chilled cocktail glass or serve on the rocks. Garnish with a floating fresh mint leaf.
The Gentleman's Sour Apple Manhattan
1 1/2 ounces Gentleman Jack Rare Tennessee Whiskey 1/2 ounce sour mix 1/2 ounce apple schnapps Thin green apple slice
Combine the Jack Daniel's, sour mix, and schnapps in a shaker with ice. Shake and strain into a chilled cocktail glass. Garnish with a thin slice of green apple.
Jack Daniel's Old Fashioned
The Old Fashioned isn't technically a Manhattan, but it's so iconic it must be included here.
1 orange slice Dash of bitters 1 teaspoon sugar 2 ounces Jack Daniel's Tennessee Whiskey
Muddle the orange slice, bitters, and sugar in the bottom of a rocks glass. Fill with ice. Top with 2 ounces of Jack Daniel's.
Tennessee Cranberry Smash Manhattan
1 orange slice 6 fresh or frozen thawed cranberries Dash of bitters 1 heaping teaspoon sugar 2 ounces Jack Daniel's Tennessee Whiskey
Muddle the orange slice, cranberries, bitters, and sugar in the bottom of a rocks glass. Fill with ice. Top with 2 ounces of Jack Daniel's.
Tennessee Honey Sparklers
Jack Daniel's Tennessee Honey is our new blend of Jack Daniel's with a touch of honey. It presents all kinds of new possibilities for cocktails like these bright sparklers.
Tennessee Honey Royale
1 ounce chilled Jack Daniel's Tennessee Honey 4 ounces chilled sparkling wine Lemon twist
Pour the Tennessee Honey into a champagne flute. Add the sparkling wine. Garnish with a lemon twist.
Tennessee Honey Bellini
1 ounce chilled Jack Daniel's Tennessee Honey 3 ounces chilled sparkling wine 1 ounce peach nectar
Pour the Tennessee Honey into a champagne flute. Add the sparkling wine. Spoon the peach nectar over the top.
1 ounce chilled Jack Daniel's Tennessee Honey 4 ounces sparkling cider Thin green apple slice
Pour the Tennessee Honey into a champagne flute. Add the sparkling cider. Garnish with a thin green apple slice.
Official Taste Testers
As a descendant of Jack Daniel and fourth generation Lynchburg native, I know it's in my blood to carry on the family tradition, and I gladly do my part. Every single Friday, I join twenty-three other distillery employees for the weekly taste-testing of the newest aged batches of Jack Daniel's. We compare the smell and taste of the current four-year-old Jack Daniel's whiskey to four-year-old batches from the previous year.
Our job is to find continuity from year to year so that every new bottle we sell tastes just as good as the last. We don't get paid extra for this work, but we do receive the coveted official duck decoy plaque after one year of service. No, I don't plan on quitting any time soon.
I have a business card that says I am a whiskey taster at the Jack Daniel Distillery. I love giving one to a stranger sitting next to me on an airplane. I immediately get twenty questions!
Fresh mint drinks aren't just for Kentucky Derby time. Easy-to-grow mint makes for easy juleps. Legend has it that, instead of mint, Uncle Jack made his juleps with tansy (we know now that tansy is toxic). My other favorite juleps are made with the Jack Daniel's fresh orange or ginger infused whiskies on pages 15–16.
Excerpted from Jack Daniel's Cookbook by LYNNE TOLLEY MINDY MERRELL Copyright © 2012 by Jack Daniel's Properties, Inc.. Excerpted by permission of Thomas Nelson. All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
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