What happens when you try to make a bottle of your whiskey look like a bottle of Jack Daniel's? You get sued. That's what happens.
So guess what happened to the makers of Lonehand Tennessee Whiskey when they put out a Tennessee Whiskey in a bottle that had a fairly close resemblance to Jack? Jack Daniel's sued them for Trademark and Trade Dress infringement. (Though not for the bottle I bought and show above, the mini bottle doesn't have the same features as the big ones.)
In fact, that lawsuit is the only reason I knew of the brand as I was wandering through my nearest Total Wine location. I first read about the lawsuit/heard of the brand in late April 2018. The Spirits Business, in the course of their reporting on the suit, stated that it was Brown-Foreman's position that the whiskey had received “highly critical customer reviews, indicating that said product is of inferior quality.”
In other words, Jack Daniel's sued Lonehand and their owners for infringement and then called them lousy whiskey on top of it. I find that funny as hell.
So of course, I had to buy a bottle. I mean, not a full bottle, that would be silly. No, I bought a 50mL bottle. Trying bad whiskey is my idea of an extreme sport, it's something I do just for the experience. But it's not like I'm about to jump off this particular cliff more than once, so I did not need more than 50 milliliters.
But all this talk of lawsuits makes one wonder why anyone would think that taking on Jack Daniel's is a good idea. Maybe they read the history of Ezra Brooks, a brand that did the same thing back in the late 1950s and is still around today.
In any case, I don't know if it means anything but the website for the brand owner is not working as of this writing, so maybe the odds aren't great that Lonehand will be the next Ezra. But what do I know? Maybe in 20 years, Sipp'n Corn will be writing a post about how Lonehand took on Jack and survived.
Lonehand Tennessee Whiskey
Purchase Info: $1.49 for a 50mL bottle at Total Wine, Burnsville, MN
Details: 40% ABV
Nose: Grain, light butterscotch, buttered popcorn
Mouth: Spice at the beginning that fades quickly. Dried grains, slight sweetness as it moves back.
Finish: Short. Sweet with lingering notes of buttered popcorn
Thoughts: Hard pass on this one from me. It's not terrible, but there are better Tennessee whiskeys out there. And if the price is the issue, there are also better and cheaper bourbons out there. I
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