September 21, 2013

Southern Comfort Bold Black Cherry

The industry push to crank out more and more flavored whiskies -- aimed primarily at the female and young adult market niches --  is embracing numerous brands. Here, an iconic old label has joined the rush once more.

Southern Comfort missed the mark in its try for something different in the form of Southern Comfort Fiery Pepper, which debuted last fall. Now, it's back for another go-round, this time with Bold Black Cherry. They may have tried too hard.

As I have found with several other cherry-flavored spirits, the cherry is rather treacly and overpowering.

The sample I received came packaged with a Coke Zero, and the urging to try the two beverages as a cocktail. Even though Coke Zero has no calories, it does have its own sweet taste, and the cocktail ingredients did not enhance either of them. In fact, the various flavors clashed on all levels.

The original Southern Comfort is itself a flavored whiskey -- notes of peach, oak, honey and a tiny touch of spice -- but the distiller doesn't seem to be breaking any real ground with its latest attempts to broaden the product line.

It would, however, be a shame to think that it won't somewhere along the line find a fitting portfolio-mate to the original Southern Comfort created by a bartender in the New Orleans French Quarter way back in 1874.

Bold Black Cherry is bottled at 35% abv (70 proof).

Suggested retail price: $16.99 for the 750ml bottle.

Go to Dowd's Spirits Notebook.

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