The original family recipe
Jack Daniel was known to be a man of refined taste. From his penchant for tailor-made suits, to the way he made his whiskey, the details mattered. And no detail was more important than his mash bill, the delicate mix of grains that help shape our whiskey’s flavor.
Jack Daniel chose a well-considered recipe of 80% corn, 12% barley and 8% rye that we still use today. Using only No. 1 quality grade corn gives the mash an inviting sweetness. An ample amount of rye rounds out the sweetness with robust notes of pepper and spice. And just enough malt brings it all together with a creamy smoothness.
Distillation begins by mixing these grains with the iron-free water from the Hollow. And just like a baker makes sour dough bread, by adding a little bit of starter yeast from a previous batch, we begin distillation by adding a little bit of our own starter mash for consistent, quality whiskey. Using a bit of starter is why Jack Daniel’s is called a sour mash. The mash ferments for a full six days before being single distilled in a large copper still made to our exact specifications. And rather than double or triple-distillation, we vaporize and condense our whiskey only once.
There’s no doubt Jack selected his mash because of its warm, balanced flavor. And we distill the way we do to ensure that the whiskey still retains it.