American Whiskey - Bourbon

Jim Beam Black Extra Aged Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey [Formerly 8yr Aged]

From: Kentucky, United States Liquor Review Category: Bourbon American Whiskey

Bottle/Rating Data

Rating Description

Tier 1
This is a Tier 1 score in the Whiskey category. It means the spirit has won the highest recommendation at least once and probably many times.
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Awards

San Francisco World Spirits Competition

  • 2005
  • 2007
  • 2008
  • 2009
  • 2011
  • 2012
  • 2013
  • 2015
  • 2016

Beverage Testing Institute

  • 2008
  • 2009
  • 2010
  • 2013
  • 2015

Wine Enthusiast

  • Pre-2004
  • 2015

Proof66 Notes

Jim Beam Black label bourbon was originally aged for 8 years on launch but dropped the age statement for the label beginning in 2015 (going with the term "extra aged"). It was considered a premium edition above the more well-known Jim Beam white label's four years of aging. It's considered a premium bourbon intended to compete directly with the more boutique bourbons that are gaining popularity but offering the black at a greatly improved value for the customer.

In discussing the bourbon shortage of 2013, Anthony Dias Blue suggested Jim Beam Black as a new bourbon to try claiming, "In blind tastings of bourbons lower than 90 proof, I've never seen $15 Jim Beam Black Lose" (Tasting Panel Magazine, July, 2013). 

Jim Beam—today the largest bourbon producer in the world—was founded by Jacob Beam in the 1790s. He's credited for selling his first barrel of whiskey in 1795 "and the legend was born." It was briefly sold off in 1920 during prohibition but was rebuilt in a mere 120 days following its repeal in 1933. The Beam family has been in continuous position as master distillers for the entire history of the facility; additionally, this prolific family has served as master distillers for most of the bourbon producing distilleries in Kentucky at one time or another--the website contains a "distillers tree" that chronicles the myriad relationships among the bourbon producers of Kentucky. In 2005, they produced their 10 millionth barrel of bourbon. Today, the distillery is one of the landmarks of Kentucky and produces several different hand-crafted bourbons as well as its own flagship labels.

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Barcodes

Here are the barcodes we have collected from various sizes of this bottle. If you have additional barcodes please submit them to us!
  • 080686034100
  • 080686034902
  • 080686034612
  • 080686034605
  • 080686034407
  • 080686003403
  • 5010196091534

    Rabble Reviews

    This bottle has 36 ratings and 34 reviews.
    quantumboy7 quantumboy7 (22) (2016-06-06)
    This is a great basic bourbon, and in small bars it's a safe bet. And it's safe to say it's probably one of the all-time best bargains in bourbon out there. But pragmatically speaking, it's lacking in the flavor and complexity that so many others offer.
    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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    lorax735 lorax735 (42) (2016-02-19)
    Not enough complexity. Pretty straight forward. A decent step up from white label though. Unfortunately, Beam has dropped its age statement on this one. Now listed as "Extra Aged". I appreciate the extra aging but miss an 8 year label. I have gone to Devil's Cut as my preferred Beam Bourbon which is much deeper and more complex offering more to the palate. Muncher has very accurate review.
    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
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    Review Comments
    Proof66 Staff (2015-04-25):
    Hi Lorax735... you're right about the age statement. A sad state of affairs! We like seeing whiskey of all kinds offered with an age statement. We adjusted our notes above to reflect that it no longer commits to the full 8 years. Hopefully they'll keep the flavor profile consistent even if it's with less mature stock.

    Erzengel Erzengel (49) (2016-01-16)
    Round and woody-nice nose. Full but rough beginning. Much more intense in flavour than the "white" one. More depth with a round and woody-vanilla body. Long remaining on the tongue, vanilla, wood, smooth malt. Nice and full - this is a quite nice one in the lower segment! 3.3
    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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    Cranecreek Cranecreek (42) (2016-01-08)
    There are a lot of Bourbons out there that share that shelf just below the good stuff. This "black" fits there nicely. Good Bourbon flavors and some complexity. At 86 proof it again lifts itself from the diluted 80 proofs. Now if you were to put another $5 to your purchase you could buy the "Single Barrel" which is very good Bourbon. Then continue your journey, stopping at Knob Creek and arriving at Bookers. Having arrived at Bookers, you will have awesome Bourbon at hand !
    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
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    US Spirit US Spirit (47) (2015-11-18)
    My first reaction, when I tried this was "Oh, that's what's wrong with the Jim Beam, its not aged long enough". This is identical to the white label Jim Beam (harshest 80 proof spirit I've ever tried) except its bottled at a slightly higher proof, and aged twice as long [Note at some point in 2015 they've switched from an 8 year label to an NAS "Extra Aged" label. This review is for the 8 year as that's all I've tried]. The difference is almost night and day. At 4 years old, Jim Beam burns like fire and doesn't taste like much. At 8 years, its a pleasant, flavorful whiskey that can hang with Wild Turkey and Jack Daniels (I'm a big fan of JD, for your typical bourbon fan maybe replace JD with Buffalo Trace for that example). I find Beam Black label to be sweet (though maybe not as candy sweet as JD or Evan Williams) and pleasantly woody (I get char and wood without too many bitter tannins, maybe "smokey would applye too)with some nice grassy/rye notes,all around this is interesting and pleasant. Some complain this is still a bit "rough", for a Beam product its actually quite smooth (It has White Label, Devil's Cut, and Knob Creek beat on that count), and while this isn't as smooth as Evan Williams or Woodford Reserve, its not too rough to sip neat imo. A very pleasant bourbon, and one that probably should have been their flagship (with the White Label relegated to the bottom shelf along with Early Times). If I knew about this stuff when I was 18, I might be as big a fan of Beam as I am of JD. Very good, and it goes on sale for a fantastic price from time to time (that's why I have a bottle it was available for $20 one day and how do you not buy this for $20?). Excellent. I hope they manage to get the NAS version to taste as good as this. 4.5 stars.
    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
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    BDanner BDanner (101) (2015-08-11)
    Leaving my original 4 star review in quotes underneath. My fears concerning the age statement are justified. This is the first bottle of the "Extra Aged" I've purchased. In a side by side comparison, the nose is still spot on (temporarily getting my hopes up), but the finish is no where near as good as my bottle of 8 year. I'll finish and enjoy my 8 Year, but I doubt another bottle of JB Black is in my future. Just too many other, better options for $26. It loses a star... "Love the bottle and labeling. Retro feel. Don't even mind the screw off top. The nose on this is by far my favorite of any bourbon I've tried. Heavy caramel, pecan pie, vanilla and a note I can't quite pin down. Almost floral. I had to remind myself that I liked the nose on Beam's regular expression as well, only to taste a two star whiskey. It enters rich and sweet. Nice silky mouth feel. All the flavors from the nose are there. Then, there it is. The Beam aftertaste, but toned down. Earthier. Mellowed. Drop in a couple ice cubes and it amps up the char. The sweet becomes almost banana cream. It reminds me of Dickel 12, which I enjoy. This goes for about $24 in my area which puts it in Buffalo Trace territory. Since I can rarely find BT anymore, this might be a good substitute. 4 Stars."
    2 of 3 people found this review helpful
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    Review Comments
    Phizbin (2015-02-26):
    Yep... right with you. Not the greatest bourbon ever and one of those heavy-char jobs... but from a value perspective, this has to be one of the greatest values on the market. I can get this for as low as $17-$18 sometimes. You just have to drink it at that price.

    BDanner (2015-02-26):
    Phizbin...I live in a state where all sales are made in State Run ABC stores. If I could find this for less than $20, it would be one of my everyday sippers. They were running it on sale this month for $22.50 so I decided to try. Their regular price is $26.50 which puts it only $1 less than BT (when I can find it).

    jeanphilt jeanphilt (32) (2015-08-07)
    Good bourbon for the price, the taste is quite different from Maker's Mark
    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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    EricDrinksLiquor EricDrinksLiquor (41) (2015-03-24)
    A step up from white label, but that's not saying much.
    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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    mynoseknows mynoseknows (33) (2014-09-25)
    This is my go to bourbon. I find it smooth and mellow with lots of caramel and toffee. I love it.
    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
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    Fitzgerald1119 Fitzgerald1119 (34) (2014-09-08)
    Nice for the price. A definite step up from white label in quality. Makes a good cocktail, but is certainly palatable for sipping straight or on the rocks.
    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
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    Muncher Muncher (263) (2014-08-02)
    A light, easy drinking version of the bourbons I like. The ones I favor are bold, oaky, sweet, char heavy, and actually have a lingering finish. Jim Beam Black is a slightly watered down version of that. Definitely a good whiskey, but could be 5 stars with me if it were between 47 and 55 percent ABV; or maybe I'm just nitpicking because this really is some good bourbon.
    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
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    AlfredReece1992 AlfredReece1992 (25) (2014-07-10)
    This is my second favorite Jim Beam product after Basil Hayden's. Its smoother with more flavors than the white label for not that big of a price difference, at least in my area. Highly recommended.
    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
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    Dudz Dudz (3) (2014-07-08)
    This bourbon starts with a very heavy oak aroma with hints of pepper spice. When sipping straight it starts off slightly sweet but quickly changes to heavy oak with no light tones. The finish lingers for a long time with medium heat. The little bit higher proof of 86 keeps it a little to unrefined, it just does not have a clean flavor profile. I normally like long lingering bourbons but with this one all I get is heavy charred oak flavor almost to the point of just tasting like ash. Over some rocks it loses it's sweetness and goes straight to the solid oak and charred aftertaste. It mellows out only after all the rocks melt away and leaves the aftertaste.
    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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    scollings scollings (83) (2014-06-12)
    This was my brand for years and years and years. Simply a good solid all-around expression of bourbon.
    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
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    Storcke Storcke (24) (2014-06-07)
    First of all, please stop saying "better than the white label." Aquarium water and rubbing alcohol is better than the while label. Literally. Black Label is very good--dark, smooth, charred-caramel flavor and rich mouth feel. The problem is, that's all there is to it, and at this price, there are many, many less expensive bourbons with all of this and more complex flavors, to boot.
    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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    Edith MaGoo Edith MaGoo (55) (2014-03-15)
    This is the best Jim Beam label I've tried. For this price, i would definitely try again. It is much smoother than most Beam products. I'd give it a strong 3.5
    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
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    derkerderr derkerderr (70) (2014-01-27)
    This isn't terrible and it isn't great. It's just okay to me. This is very affordable, however, and it could be a nice bourbon to share with friends. Just not your best friends. Save some Blanton's for that.
    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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    JamesCThatsMe JamesCThatsMe (12) (2013-11-22)
    Like liquid candy barrel aged just for me. This is my go to value whiskey. I really dont buy any cheaper whiskey unless l am making 7 and 7s. So much better than the white label they should make this their flagship brand.
    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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    Bisbob Bisbob (2) (2013-10-25)
    My "go to" bourbon for visitors when I don't want to share a premium brand. A great value. Much better than the white label.
    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
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    NeatPour NeatPour (172) (2013-10-03)
    This was a pleasant surprise... Far far better than I expected. The flavor is rich (char?). I can see this being my new go to at bars. The other praise I'll add is that we tried this along side Evan Williams 2003, a good bourbon in its own right, this was the clear winner...
    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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    Ackman Ackman (94) (2013-10-01)
    Better than the white label. Everything is nicely balanced. A must for your bar/liquor cabinet.
    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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    Dakota Dakota (136) (2013-08-07)
    Anthony Diaz Blue the #1 authority on liquor said this 1 beats all bourbons blind...damn.
    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
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    joecobra26 joecobra26 (6) (2013-02-20)
    Im surprised that this does not cost more money. I find this very smooth and quite enjoyable. Perfect for sipping!
    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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    TimeToGoHome TimeToGoHome (32) (2013-01-02)
    A little harsh straight. Smooths out and becomes more complex with a dash of water. 3 stars straight. 4 stars with water
    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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    StanMemTn StanMemTn (101) (2012-09-09)
    I'm just not a Jim Beam fan. Don't know if it's the rye in the mash bill or what but it's always a bit unenjoyable to me. This product definitely benefits from the extra aging and gains some real flavor and complexity. I'd drink this with just a touch of water but would be wishing for some Wild Turkey or Jack Daniel's in this price range.
    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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    bourbob bourbob (24) (2012-05-01)
    Quite nice! Much better than what you think of when you hear "Jim Beam". A surprisingly good find and very reasonably priced.
    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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    magezi magezi (55) (2012-03-12)
    Perfect! Amazing bourbon for the price.
    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
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    aslezak aslezak (27) (2011-09-26)
    As a mixer, this is a good bourbon.  It has too much bite to be had neat, and you'll have to wait for the ice to melt before consuming it on the rocks.  If you really like Jim Beam white, it is a smoother version of the elixir.  But there are many more drinkable bourbons out there in this price range.
    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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    Allan Allan (160) (2011-07-14)
    Reasonable price for an 8yr old bourbon. A bit drier than regular Beam but it makes the best Old Fashioned I've had.
    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
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    Rampage455 Rampage455 (9) (2010-11-15)
    JB Black is a good bourbon with a sweet smell and taste. Although, this is not as smooth as it should be considering it has been aged 8 years (Jack Daniels is actually smoother). Expect fiery dragon breath when taking shots. Mix with coke to remove the harshness and to really bring out this bourbon's sweetness.
    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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    manikmathur manikmathur (18) (2010-09-11)
    Overhyped , did not have the smoothness that you would expect from a 8year aged liquor.
    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
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    jfatt340 jfatt340 (15) (2010-08-05)
    When someone asks for a mixed bourbon drink you will not feel slighted because JBlack is such a great value.
    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
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    Irishman Irishman (269) (2009-05-07)
    This is by far the best bourbon on the planet for the money. An absolute must have for any bar.
    2 of 3 people found this review helpful
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    See an error? We try very hard to have accurate information for every bottle, but sometimes we miss something or just plain get it wrong. If you see any information or data that is in error for this bottle, please report the error to us and we'll get it corrected right away. Cheers!

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