Tag Archives: Evan Williams

Evan Williams White Label

                                                                                             A few weeks back we reviewed EW Black label, the mega seller from Heaven Hill, and gave it a somewhat mediocre rating. We got an email from a reader suggesting we try the White label, saying it was considerately better.  We were skeptical seeing how the White label is only the Black at 100 proof instead of 86.

Evan Williams White Label, also called EW Bottled in Bond, meaning among other things it is bottled at the aforementioned 100 proof. EW White comes in the same shaped, screw top bottle as the Black label. It sells for around $15 or so for the 750ml which is a couple of bucks higher than the Black label. It is at least 4 years old and while widely available, not quite as easy to find as the Black label.

NOSE

Ron:   I do not pick up a lot of heat in this mild mellow nose. I do pick up decent aromas of apricot and wood. Lingering behind is scents of leather, caramel and yellow cake batter.

Todd:   Agree, doesn’t smell like it’s 100 proof. I Also get the caramel but more upfront along with cedar. I pick up secondary aromas of chocolate, leather, praline and a slight mustiness. No apricot or cake batter here.

TASTE

Ron:  Very smooth neat but nothing jumping out. As my ice melts I start to get a spiciness followed by cherries, bread and a slight musty/ethanol flavor

Todd:   Yes, very smooth neat but needs water to bring out some flavors. Even then there is no dominant taste, just a lot of secondary ones. In descending order I get grain, cedar, white pepper, caramel, leather and almonds.

FINISH

Ron:  A medium finish with some warm toffee and yeasty bread.

Todd:   Medium to medium long with a taste I just can’t nail down. I do pick up the yeasty finish that Ron mentions.

OVERALL

Ron:    A good Bourbon for the price and I do like it better than the Black label.

Todd:    A very pleasant drink at a very good price. Not as sweet as I remember the Black label. Will definitely buy again.

Nose     4 out of 5

Taste     7.5 out of 10

Finish    4 out of 5

Total score     15.5 out of 20 barrels

Well we both liked the White label considerately more than the Black label. For just a few dollars more you get a better drink and a higher proof. The higher proof makes it an even better deal, seeing as how you get more for your money. The higher proof also makes for a better cocktail.

Bottom line, most of can’t drink super premiums with every pour. Evan Williams Bottled in Bond White label is a great second glass.

 

Evan Williams

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Up for review today is the standard Evan Williams or Evan Williams Black label. This is their flagship line not to be confused with the 100 proof White label or the Single Barrel.

EW Black comes in an uncorked bottle that will remind one immediately of Jack Daniels. It is bottled at 86 proof, is at least 4 years old and sells for around $12-14 for the 750ML. It can be found just about everywhere. Speaking of Jack, Evan Williams states on the bottle that it is charcoal filtered, we always thought this meant it was a Tennessee Whiskey as opposed to a Bourbon. But the bottle clearly says “Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey”.

NOSE

Ron:  Corn, caramel and spice prevail as first aromas. Just behind that I picked up cedar and a slight whiff of clover.

Todd: Smooth pleasant scent that seemed to belong to a more expensive Bourbon. Dried corn and wood came first. This was followed by hints of caramel, honey, tobacco and almonds.

TASTE

Ron:  Continued to get the spice that I got on the nose along with some oak. Secondary flavors included cinnamon, a medicinal taste and just a slight bit of bitterness.

Todd:  Very smooth and sweet neat though not real complex. Nothing really stands out, just a lot of secondary flavors. I tasted the corn and the wood that I got on the nose along with some white pepper and bread.

FINISH

Ron:  A medium finish with some warmth and a little more bitterness.

Todd:   Not much to add, medium with a slight bitterness.

OVERALL

Ron:  Not bad for the price. However if there is a bottle of JTS Brown nearby, grab the Brown instead.

Todd: I felt that I had to reach on some of the flavors, that said it was not unpleasant to sip on. It has a nice nose and a good price point.

Nose     3.75 out of 5

Taste      7 out of 10

Finish     3.25 out of 5

Total score        14 out of 20 Barrels

As always we take price into consideration on rating Bourbon. Evan Williams Black label is a good drink when you consider it is typically found under $14 for the 750ml and in the high teens for the 1.75 bottle. While a lot of people use it as a mixer, it was a little too sweet with not enough enough kick for us. Having said that it wasn’t bad with a few drops of bitters mixed in.

Our final thought is that you need to have some lower end juice around the house for 2nd or 3rd pours, people who like a mixed drink and for those who are not really into Bourbon but want a glass to look the part.

Other Bourbon’s that we have found at this price point that we also like are Heaven Hill Old Style, which allegedly is not currently produced, and the aforementioned JTS Brown which is also  not usually on the shelf. So it is getting harder to find which could mean Evan William’s Black just might make it into your cabinet by default.