The Jack Daniel Distillery responded to recent headlines in the United Kingdom that a Welshman has uncovered Jack Daniel‘s original whiskey recipe by saying, “It’s a good story, but one based in fancy rather than fact as the dates don’t match historical record,” according to Jack Daniel‘s Master Distiller Jeff Arnett.
As told in the U.K. story, businessman Mark Evans claims a book of herbal remedies written in 1853 by his great-great-grandmother contains the original recipe for Jack Daniel‘s whiskey. The story cites as proof that one of Mr. Evans’ relatives left Wales for America around 1853 and traveled to Lynchburg, Tenn., where the Jack Daniel Distillery was opened later, and that relative was known as “John ‘Jack the Lad’ Daniels.”
“The people and dates just don’t match up,” said Arnett. “Jack Daniel‘s family was living in America for two generations prior to the 1853 date Mr. Evans suggests his relative came to the United States. His John ‘Jack the Lad’ Daniels is not our Jasper Newton ‘Jack’ Daniel.
“We also know that Jack Daniel learned to make whiskey from a local Lutheran minister here in Lynchburg and not an herbal remedies book,” added Arnett.
“Jack Daniel‘s has always benefited from the fact that people liked to talk about it,” said Arnett. “Its remarkable, small-town founder and the fact it’s made in a dry county intrigue people and get them talking. And so, through the years, it’s drawn all kinds of legend and lore to it. Mr. Evans’ story falls into the category of lore.”