Before starting his own Tennessee Whiskey company and giving it his daughter’s nickname, founder J. Arthur Rackham spent more than 50 years working in the alcohol industry.
Corn (80%), rye (10%), and malted barley (10%) make up the mash bill, with the former originating from local farmers within 50 miles of the distillery. After the grains have been milled, a 72-hour sour mash and double distillation take place. In a second pot “doubler” still after first passing through a copper column still.
The Lincoln County Process, which involves passing the alcohol through maple charcoal staves, is used as this is Tennessee whiskey. In order to boost smoothness, Rackham does things a little differently by using a light second round of maple charcoal filtering.
After maturing, Daddy Rack is bottled at 40% ABV without any added caramel, colouring, or flavours.
Appearance: Honey gold with an orange hue. A semi-viscous film quickly costs the glass with a thick swirl mark, which slowly morphs into quite a chaotic scene of medium legs and jagged teardrops.
Nose: Oddly, the nose was quite weak at first, but as the glass has sat for a short time, it’s become quite heady. Those familiar bourbon’esque aromas of vanilla, caramel and oak. There’s a definite peppery note too, along with grilled banana. There are also earthy undertones: soil and minerals.
It’s a nose I like and bodes well for the palate, but that’s often the case and the palate doesn’t always deliver!
Palate: Quite a thin mouthfeel, nothing to write home about. Spice (black pepper and hot cinnamon) delivery, with burnt blood orange and a metallic twang. Wrigley’s Peppermint gum, petrichor and pineapple.
The vanilla, caramel and more buttery notes, along with baking spices, appear as the palate acclimatises to the spice. It’s an ‘ok’ palate, definitely a summer BBQ sipper.
Finish: Quite short and sweet. Grilled tropical fruits, spearmint and honey.
Overall: It’s ok. At £33 it’s contending with the likes of WT101, Woodford Reserve, Four Roses and MM46, all of which are far superior.