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Jameson Black Barrel vs Redbreast 12: Head to Head!

Discover the differences between Jameson Black Barrel vs Redbreast 12 in this in-depth comparison and decide which Whiskey is better for You!

Jameson Black Barrel

jameson-black-barrel-whiskey
NoseCaramel, oak, smoke
PalateCaramel, vanilla, cereal
FinishMedium, roasted nuts
Alcohol content80 proof (40% ABV)
How to drinkRocks
Similar toJohnnie Walker Black Label

The Black Barrel takes the regular Jameson Whiskey as its base but is aged in heavily charred bourbon barrels. This adds a deep amber hue to the Whiskey along some tasting notes that make it more interesting.

The nose is mostly sweet, with hints of caramel, charred oak and just a tad of smoke.

On the palate, the Black Barrel feels a bit peppery at first, but nothing too severe. The peppery taste gives way to a rich caramel flavor, along sweet vanilla, toasted cereal and a tiny hint of smoke.

The finish has a medium length, with a hint of roasted nuts, charred oak and very little warmth to it.

Adding water releases a bit of caramel but doesn’t change the flavor by much.

Overall, the Jameson Black Barrel is a more interesting whiskey than the regular Jameson. More tasty as the charred oak added value to the dram and yet smooth making something that drinks nicely on the rocks.

It tastes like a smooth and sweet version of the Johnnie Walker Black if you want me to draw a comparison.

There are a facts worth knowing about the Jameson Black Barrel:

  • Comprised of a high proportion of single pot still and grain whiskey aged first in a mix of ex-sherry and ex-bourbon casks.

  • Finished in extra charred ex-bourbon barrels.

  • Age ranges from 8-16 years.

  • This whiskey is triple-distilled which is the norm in the Irish whiskey industry. Most spirits are double-distilled but the Irish add a distillation as they like smooth liquors.

Redbreast 12

redbreast-12
NoseVanilla, caramel, ginger, orange peel
PalateRipe fruit, citrus, sherry, baking spice, oak
FinishRipe fruit, citrus, sherry, baking spice, oak
Alcohol content80 proof (40% ABV)
How to drinkNeat or add water
Similar toGreen Spot, Macallan 12

The nose brings a rich vanilla note, followed by caramel, a touch of ginger and a tad of orange peel.

On the palate, the Redbreast feels remarkably creamy with a rich texture that invites you to chew it.

Flavor brings ripe fruit up-front, followed by hints of citrus, sherry wine and a good hit of oak.

Finish is long, bringing pleasing warmth, along baking spice and dried fruit.

Redbreast is a fantastic whiskey better than many famous single malt whiskies.

It strikes a perfect combination between sweet and spicy notes in an incredibly creamy body.

This whiskey drinks nicely neat and doesn’t need neither water nor ice and much less chaser as it goes down dangerously easy.

The price tag seems a bit high but you won’t remember it after a few rounds.

There a few facts worth knowing about the Redbreast 12:

  • The Redbreast is made from malted and unmalted barley.

  • Triple-distilled in copper pot stills to later be aged for 12 years in ex-bourbon and ex-oloroso sherry wine casks.

  • 96 points from Whisky Advocate.

  • Double Gold Medal at the San Francisco World Spirits Competition on four separate occasions.

  • “Irish Whiskey of the Year” at the Irish Whiskey Awards in 2013.

What do the Black Barrel and Redbreast have in common?

Both crafted at the Jameson Distillery

The Black Barrel and the Redbreast are both crafted at the Jameson Distillery as they are owned by Pernod Ricard from France.

Barreling and aging provides enough differences to this whiskeys making them unique from each other.

Jameson Black Barrel vs Redbreast 12: Price comparison

Prices are approximate and stated in USD:

WhiskeyPrice
Jameson Black Barrel$30
Redbreast 12$59

Jameson Black Barrel vs Redbreast 12: Which is better?

Redbreast is a fine sipping whiskey

WhiskeyBlack BarrelRedbreast
Nose
Body
Palate
Finish
Value
  • The Redbreast is one of the best Irish Whiskeys within its range and goes toe to toe with some of the best 12 year Single Malts from Scotland (Glenfiddich or Macallan).

  • The Black Barrel belongs to a different category. This is an upgrade over the classic Jameson, but still far from breaking into the category of sipping whiskeys.

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