Hybrid whiskey, as I’ve touched on before, is a bit of a weird bird in the greater whisk(e)y world. It seems to attempt to bring together through different means the best characteristics of different styles, such as bourbon and Scotch, into something new which may or may not be acceptable to drinkers of the more individual varieties. Examples of this have included the recently launched Dewar’s Scratched Cask, and now Beam-Suntory is getting into the mix, debuting Jim Beam Kentucky Dram.
Jim Beam Kentucky Dram is, as the name implies, a premium bourbon infused with “a touch of peaty” Highland Scotch whisky (the latter reportedly is pulled from Ardmore distillery stock). It differs from other hybrids in that those have tended so far to be just Scotch all by its lonesome that’s gone through special American oak cask aging, whereas Dram is an actual blended whisk(e)y offering. The resulting creation was bottled at 40% ABV and seems to lack an age statement.
Now you might be wondering what this will taste like. From what’s been described over at DFNI, one should expect the “smoky flavor” of the Scotch will enrich “the smooth vanilla and oaky notes of the bourbon.” Dram will be housed in special packaging that spins a tale of T. Jeremiah Beam and “introduces consumers to the seven generations of Jim Beam master distillers since 1795.”
In terms of pricing and availability, it is set to hit global travel retail markets in July at a price point, reported a few months back, of around 35 euros ($40 USD). There was no immediate mention of whether it would be available in regular US markets at some point.
Nino Kilgore-Marchetti is the founder and editor-in-chief of The Whiskey Wash, an award winning whiskey lifestyle website dedicated to informing and entertaining consumers about whisk(e)y on a global level. As a whisk(e)y journalist, expert and judge he has written about the subject extensively, been interviewed in various media outlets and...