Review: Jacob’s Pardon American Whiskey #3 18 Years Old

Review: Jacob’s Pardon American Whiskey #3 18 Years Old

Taub Family Selections introduced their Jacob’s Pardon line back in 2021 with a unique focus on the somewhat obscure category of light whiskey. As a refresher, the first Small Batch release was a blend of MGP-sourced light whiskey and Tennessee whiskey sourced from George Dickel. A line of single barrels drawn from those same 15-year-old light whiskey stocks also joined the party. For Small Batch #2, Jacob’s Pardon changed it up with a higher abv blend of entirely Tennessee whiskey, so I suppose it’s not all that surprising that Batch #3 is now going in the opposite direction. This latest offering, like all Jacob’s Pardon small batch releases, has been blended by well-known spirits writer Paul Pacult, and it is comprised entirely of MGP light whiskey, now aged 18 years and bottled at a scorching barrel proof. Let’s see if we have any tastebuds left after this one.

Even at such a towering proof, the aroma isn’t as volatile or eye-watering as one might expect, and with ample time to open, it becomes remarkably approachable. Light whiskey, in my experience, is often sweet, but this shows a savory side, as well. Notes of caramel-covered green apple and Cracker Jacks give way to earthier straw and mowed hay with a persistent lacing of butterscotch and taffy. The palate is certainly zesty with a prickly warmth, but once again, it’s not the lighter fluid quality one might anticipate. The texture is surprisingly round, almost creamy, with chewy caramels, vanilla fudge, and buttery cinnamon toast. Water is unsurprisingly a friend (frankly, a necessity), but it doesn’t really change the flavor equation, just rounds the edges and subdues the chili pepper warmth. The finish is generous and simmers with notes of vanilla frosting, butterscotch candies, and lemon meringue. A fun and surprisingly agreeable “hazmat” whiskey but still not for the faint of heart.

142.7 proof.

B+ / $195 /

Jacob's Pardon American Whiskey #3 18 Years Old




Drew Beard is assistant editor for Drinkhacker and winner of several booze-related merit badges, including Certified Specialist in Spirits and Executive Bourbon Steward. A former federal employee turned hotelier and spirits journalist, he looks forward to his next midlife crisis.

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