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-The Lincoln County Process- Written by Elijah Arnold

Did you know Jack Daniels Tennessee Whiskey gets its flavor from a technique called the Lincoln County Process which was developed in Lincoln County before part of our county was absorbed into Moore County?

The Lincoln County process is a specific method of charcoal filtering used in the production of Tennessee whiskey, particularly associated with the production of Jack Daniel's whiskey. Nathan “Earnest” Green, an enslaved person, taught Jack Daniel the ancient technique that makes Jack Daniel’s whiskey what it is today. Nathan was regarded as the best whiskey maker in the state of Tennessee and has finally been remembered as the superb whiskey maker he was. Subsequently, this process involves the filtration of newly distilled whiskey through sugar maple charcoal before it is aged in barrels. This process is intended to mellow and refine the flavor of the whiskey, removing impurities and contributing to the smoothness of the final product.

Here's how the process typically works:

1. Mellowing Tanks: The newly distilled whiskey is transferred to large vats known as mellowing tanks. These tanks are filled with stacks of sugar maple charcoal, which is created by burning sugar maple wood into charcoal chunks. 2. Charcoal Filtration: The whiskey is allowed to slowly drip through the charcoal in the mellowing tanks. As the liquid passes through the charcoal, impurities, harsh flavors, and certain congeners (chemical compounds that can contribute to off flavors) are absorbed by the charcoal. This results in a smoother and more refined taste. 3. Aging: After the charcoal filtration, the whiskey is transferred to oak barrels for aging. The aging process contributes to the development of the whiskey's flavor, as it interacts with the wood of the barrels, gaining color, aroma, and complexity over time.

It's important to note that the Lincoln County process is not unique to Jack Daniel's. Other Tennessee whiskey producers, such as George Dickel, also use a similar charcoal filtering method. However, the Lincoln County process is closely associated with the Jack Daniel's brand and is considered a defining characteristic of its production.

While some whiskey enthusiasts appreciate the mellowing effect of the Lincoln County process, others argue that it can strip away certain flavors and nuances that might be present in other styles of whiskey; some even say it’s a bourbon, not whiskey. As with any aspect of whiskey production, personal preference plays a significant role in determining whether one enjoys the results of the Lincoln County process.

So why don’t you come down, try it out for yourself, fall in love with the area, and buy a home with Team Gatlin while you are here? We have you covered!



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